Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 19

FROM THE EXECUTIVE’S DESK

BY STEVEN FEINBERG

Be the Change You Want to See

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An old parable states, “Many are called, but few are chosen,” and when it comes to the leadership of the ERA, the adage rings true, with a subtle wrinkle. The reason is that the process for attaining a leadership role within our volunteer organization begins by one choosing themselves – to step up and take an active role with our industry non-profit. This is a decision I made some four years ago, culminating with the privilege of acting as Chairman of the Board in a tenure that concluded last month. I’d like to express my gratitude for being given the opportunity to serve and to share parts of my journey in the hopes that I might inspire you to embark on a similar path. First, allow me to dispel the idea that leadership within ERA is a closed society. It is, however, a process. Like any volunteer organization, it relies on an active membership to maintain its vitality and, frankly, it is a handful of truly committed individuals who make the time and put forth the necessary effort to be deeply involved. Whether you are passionate about government affairs, enjoy educating others, or simply want to collaborate with and get to know colleagues, there are a multitude of opportunities to get involved. By supporting ERA through sponsorship, participation at the committee and council level, and by way of thought leadership vehicles such as panels, presentations, and ERA’s flagship publication Electronic Retailer, there are countless ways to demonstrate your support and distinctive talents. Since marketers are the life’s blood of our industry, a concerted effort has been made to involve as many of these leaders at the board level as possible because without them, all of the suppliers who rely on them for their livelihood, could not survive. As a supplier myself, I’ve seen how, through networking and participation, anyone can have the good fortune of ascending to the top ranks of leadership. The same opportunity to become an agent of change awaits you if you desire it. But you may be wondering, is it worth the effort? Let me assure you that by committing yourself to the betterment of the industry, you will not only be serving the common good, but will raise the profile of your company, and your own station among your peers. I’m proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish during my time on the board. In concert with a dedicated Board of Directors and officers, as well as a first-rate staff led by President and CEO Julie Coons, some of our major achievements include:

• Navigating through an arduous economic crisis so that we are running in the black. • Significantly strengthening our government advocacy program, and doubling participation in the ERA Government Affairs Fly-In. • Moving ERA headquarters into Washington D.C., and a heartbeat from Capitol Hill. • Presenting the most dynamic trade gatherings in the industry, including record attendance and trade show floors that possess an unprecedented level of dynamism and vibrancy. • Upgrading the level of all communication, with a special shout out to the marketing department. Having said all of this, there is still much work to be done. Just as I have migrated the focus of my own company, SF Global Sourcing, to a much more worldwide sourcing and manufacturing operation, there is a desire to expand ERA’s global reach. And with the threat of online sales tax continuing to loom, ERA’s role in government affairs will continue to take center stage. Still, there are other challenges ahead that have yet to be identified. But it’s going to take a broader coalition, not just a handful of individuals. That is where you come in. As Gandhi stated, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” I understand you’re busy and that you play a vital role in your company. I also know that you would not be reading this if your curiosity were not piqued. So I challenge you: Find your niche within ERA and go forth. Reach out to the staff and discover how you can use your singular talents to effect change. I will welcome you, because I’m not going anywhere. I’ll be chairing this year’s Nominating Committee for the Board of Directors and staying actively involved. Trust me when I say that your business will be rewarded at the same time that you are personally enriched. While the transactions you are likely to consummate are vital, it is the relationships that reap more infinite dividends, and there is no better path to mining both, than active involvement within your ERA. Steven Feinberg is the CEO of SF Global Sourcing (www.sfglobalsourcing.com) and the Immediate Past Chairman of the ERA Board of Directors. Steven can be reached at 1-855-SF-GLOBAL or steven@sfglobalsourcing.com.

October 2012 | electronicRETAILER

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Electronic Retailer - October 2012

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Electronic Retailer - October 2012

Calendar of Events
Your Association, Your Bottom Line
Industry Reports
FTC Forum
IMS Retail Rankings
Jordan Whitney’s Top Categories
Ask the Expert
From the Executive’s Desk
It’s All About the Numbers
Media Attribution Goes Mobile
Marketing to Teens: Not All Fun and Games
Guest Viewpoint
Guest Viewpoint
DRTV
Teleservices
Fulfillment
Member Spotlight
Bulletin Board
Advertiser Index
Classifieds
Rick Petry
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - cover1
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - cover2
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 3
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 4
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 5
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 6
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - Calendar of Events
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - Your Association, Your Bottom Line
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 9
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - Industry Reports
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 11
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - FTC Forum
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 13
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - IMS Retail Rankings
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 15
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - Jordan Whitney’s Top Categories
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 17
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - Ask the Expert
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - From the Executive’s Desk
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - It’s All About the Numbers
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 21
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 22
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 23
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - Media Attribution Goes Mobile
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 25
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 26
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 27
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - Marketing to Teens: Not All Fun and Games
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 29
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 30
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - Guest Viewpoint
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 32
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - Guest Viewpoint
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 34
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 35
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 36
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - DRTV
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - Teleservices
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - Fulfillment
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - Member Spotlight
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 41
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 42
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - Advertiser Index
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - Classifieds
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - 45
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - Rick Petry
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - cover3
Electronic Retailer - October 2012 - cover4
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