Submitted by bginley on Tue, 12/02/2008 - 11:19.
metalwork by Don Drumm - Artist from Akron
Boundless Flight's White Knight
Gary Baney has scripted some prose for our Blog:
Here is his first post addressing local co's for holiday shopping ~>
The Times ...
they are a changin'!
It is a most interesting exercise to sit back and remember the unravelling of the mostly fake economy that was built up by the Vietnam war as a parallel to what is going on now. I was in Chicago in the construction trades during most of that dip and used the decline to justify taking a few programming classes at Elgin Community College which then led to a tenure at Judson University and then to Kellogg. The rest is a whirlwind. Now that I am in Cleveland with my own company, I am pondering how to respond to this current mess that is doing its damnest to swallow us all with either discouragement, financial ruin, or downright depression. Being a natural-bornfighter with nary a hint of downside thinking, I say FIGHT! and I have figured out how I and my little company are going to fight back over the next few weeks. I am tired of investing in very large corporations over which I have no real control. Look what Ford has done with our hard-earned $$$. I don't know a single person on the senior executive management team of Ford (unless you include their pseudo-CTO/top software architect in that group - but that is a stretch) and I certainly don't personally know anyone sitting on their board. When they started sliding, I had no voice. They had my $$$, but I had no voice. No more. Boundless Flight, Inc. is going to start supporting and investing in companies that WE KNOW! We are going to buy the stock of companies we have a chance to really influence; if I know their CEO, CIO, or CTO, we have a chance. When given the chance, we are going to buy products from the same companies. NO MORE buying merely the "best value" product when that repeated activity by th emillions(?) of us in N.E. Ohio puts "our own" at jeapordy.
Some examples of things we will do over the next few weeks:
1. We will only buy American Greetings/Carleton holiday cards. If we don't see one of these brands on a card, it isn't going to be purchased. If we don't find what we want on those shelves, I'll be giving my IT compatriot Doug Rommel, one of their marketing gurus, Art Bergstresser, or my former student Kyle Ludwick a call.
2. One of the corporate gifts we will be giving will be Malley's giftbaskets. Adele, if we don't find what we want, I will be giving you a call. Remember me, I used to be a friend of Dianne Walsh ... 'nuff said. (;>)
3. For my friends with children, I will be buying STEP2 products. STEP2, by the way, enormously supported the efforts of our own Nivi Engineer's Summer Santa project by donating TRUCK LOADS of toys the children in Iowa during the summer flood disaster.
4. Two of my friends are doing remodeling. Paint? ... Sherwin-Williams. Tom, if my friends give me push back, I'm giving YOU a call.
5. Adult gifts for those around me who might (or might not!) appreciate such? I am told Ambiance has quite a selection. Again, if I can't find a reasonable stock of tasteful and reasonable items, I'm calling Jennifer Downeyto let her know.
6. One of our favorite corporate gifts is to send our customers packages of high-quality coffee with the tag line "Call Boundless Flight for GREAT Java!". Corny, I know .. but I actually had a fellow board memeber of the CITe Board at Akron U. tell me he thought it was really a nice idea. Our favorite local coffee? PHOENIX !! We love their roasting, their bean selection, and their staff. We even like Sarah Wilson-Jones .. but will not hesitate to hold her accountable if the goods aren't up to our expectations.
7. I know lots of folks in the Smucker's senior IT team and will specifically select their products from here on out .. but also let them know if I get any negative reviews.
8. Know any teenage girls who need a something special under the tree?? Bonnie Bell - you can't go wrong. As a father of three daughters, they LOVED their lip smacking products and would be really upset if they couldn't find them. We've been to the top of the marketing group at Bonnie Bell; no problem walking right over there and making a point if needed.
9. Pat Catan's has always been one of the area's class acts. I will be going there for all our decoration and crafty goodies this year. You can still find several of the Catan family directly involved in the business. Even going back to Pops, I could always get his ear with recommendations if I could keep up with him bringing in carts from the parking lot!
10. Holiday food preparation? It will be Heinen's for us this year. We have had a Boundless Flight check cashing card from Heinen's almost sinceday #1 - we just haven't used it enough. Jeff, if anything doesn't look quite right, I'm coming straight to you.
11. Brewski's ... we are going with Great Lake Brewery . My son, Ben,is the "President of the Great Lakes Brewery Club" at Illinois State University. He graduates from there this December and when he leaves, that whole school is going into depression because there won't be any more Papa Baney Dortmunder beer trains coming in from Cleveland. Papa Baney will also be going through withdrawal ... there are some cute, cute, CUTE girls at that school that I will lose contact with ... . Anyway ... Mark Hunger, if the quality EVER starts slipping, we will let you know right away!!
12. Candles? LOTS of people have never heard of AI Root down in Medina. It is one of the most memorable browsing experiences you will ever have as the place ALWAYS smells perfectly heavenly!
13. Having been born in Walla Walla, WA, I have always supported the outstanding wines of the Columbia Valley. This year, though, we will be focusing on our OHIO vinyards . If the taste isn't quite competitive with a CA syrah or WA merlots, I am going to bite my tongue and remind myself that my dollar only went 60 miles away and not 3,000.
14. Last but not least, we will be buying lots of gifts this year from the artist community in Cleveland. This has *nothing* to do with our recent hiring of Bridget Ginley! (;>) The Don Drumm Gallery is a GREAT collection of local artwork. River Arts is another and maybe the best is the Museum of Contemporary Art . As these times get tougher and tougher, let's do our best to see that our local creatives stay well fed!I think you get the idea.
1. BUY LOCAL - support the people around us and enable local prosperity.
2. GET TO KNOW YOUR LOCAL COMPANY'S MANAGEMENT TEAMS - keep them accountable. Excellence will draw in more business and foster loyalty. Mediocrity willjust extend the status quo.
3. INVEST IN LOCAL COMPANIES - we are going to start really focusing on this. It is one of the few ways remaining for us to have an effective, direct voicein our own destiny.
I am confident the government will be taking a larger and larger portion ofour profits AND our income going forward. As of January, 2009, the U.S. will instantly become more focused on wealth redistribution and socialisticbehavior than China. You think I am kidding???? They are CELEBRATING overthere!! If we continue in the direction we are going, i.e., harboringenormous and gross economic in efficiences with government-sponsored bandaidsthat IGNORE the consequences of the social mediocrity it will bring, theChinese are going to be buying our land, our companies, and financing our children's debt to an even far greater level than they have ours!One of my duties this next month is to analyze and ponder our company'srelationship with China, India, and Vietnam. We have three offices in China,we are in dialog with Vietnam (they need trainers to evolve their technical base quickly), and I am pulled at weekly to initiate dialog with Indiancompanies. One of Boundless Flight's original principals, Xiaodong Yang, hasdone an OUTSTANDING job of recruiting some of the better .NET developers Ihave yet to see. It is a tough call - I am going to seek input from ouradvisory board regarding the decision. We'll keep you up to date on all decisions. FREEDOM!!!!!!!!!,