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Children increase productivity
01 August 2012
“I’m more productive since I’ve become a mum,” explains Annalise Law, when I ask her in a recent Ruby interview about having a business and a young family.
“I may have had the time before children,” she continues, “but I didn’t use it wisely. I’d put doing things off. Now, I’m focussed and do things immediately and the business benefits. I was also more selfish before the kids. I’d do what I wanted when I wanted, sometimes at the expense of business.”
Annalise has had a number of promotional products designed to meet the specific needs of her clients. At least one of those products, she believes, has also directly benefited from her being a mum.
“The pharmaceutical company Glaxo Smith Klein, which does Children’s Panadol, wanted a ‘travel case’ on shelf for mums and dads to buy knowing they could put the product in their bag or pack it for travelling and it wouldn’t break or leak over everything.
“We designed a green travel case into which the Children’s Panadol and dosage syringe would fit. The case is designed to open with one hand and you can remove the contents with one hand. I made sure of this because I understand what it’s like to be in the dark in the middle of the night with an agitated child on one arm and only one hand free.
“We’ve supplied more than 1.2 million cases in 2 years and the travel case is now part of the permanent range.
“A lot of the time, people view the promotional product industry as Trinketisation, useless plastic objects wasting money and resources, but it doesn’t have to be. My aim is to increase credibility and integrity,” says Annalise.
Based on staff numbers The Kanga Group is classified SME (small medium enterprise). Annalise employs a number of GenY women. The business champions diversity and, Annalise notes, is in an industry that attracts females.
“We have amazing young women driving the business but some GenYs have been very challenging in the workplace. It’s the attitude of entitlement they have. This generation want it all today, and they don’t always respect older, more experienced people in the business,” finds Annalise.
“I look at the way younger staff have grown up: with all the technology, everything moving so fast. Keeping up means doing things at such a pace. It’s no wonder they think they’re ready for everything. I wish things would slow down a bit – give us all time to breath and look around. This is a fast moving business anyway.”
Her advice for those starting out in the entrepreneurial workspace – in fact any job – is to “back your ideas and have a fluid plan”. Survival, she notes, is not a plan.
“Young people today have been told too many times: everyone’s a winner, everyone gets a prize. At some stage, there has to be a winner and someone has to come last. To cope with success and failure you need a plan. In business you do fail. Understanding what that means and that it’s okay is very important. In fact, failure is often better because you learn more from making mistakes than getting things right all the time. It’s about resilience,” finishes Annalise.
By Louise Upton, Ruby Editor