vehicles, he reaches 56 million households and 7 million listeners in 105 radio markets, respectively, every day. As an author of four books, an advocate, a political analyst, and a lecturer, Smiley himself is the only brand/product his Los Angeles-based firm offers.
Shawn Buchanan, President And Ceo, All American Meats Inc.
On intergenerational management
I find that it’s easier for young people to adapt and change because they haven’t been driven in a certain direction. Older people may have a great deal of experience, but I think you have younger people leading companies right now because of their ability to adapt and change very quickly.
I have a few employees in their early 60s. They were mentors before I started the business. Now that I’m running it, I treat them as allies, as well as integral parts of the operation. It’s very important to earn the respect of all those that you work with and who work for you. For example, the people in my organization know that I work 16 hours or more a day, every day, even Sundays. And because I also showed them that I wanted to learn their way of doing things in addition to applying more innovative ideas to the way we do business, I earned their respect.
My advice to those who have younger managers or bosses? Understand that even though they may be young and “in charge,” they still need to maintain the same work ethic as someone older. They need all kinds of people — a mix of younger and older individuals on staff and in management positions — to make them and the operation grow and be successful.
Shawn Buchanan, 31, launched All American Meats Inc., a $15 million food-processing firm in Omaha, Nebraska, in 1996. He was drafted by the Atlanta Braves out of high school, and was later drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in his junior year at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln. After graduation, he played for six years with the Chicago White Sox before retiring in 1996.
On reinventing yourself
Reinventing yourself requires that you keep an open mind. Yes, find out what you’re good at [doing]. You have to. However, always keep your eyes open to other things that you can do. A career is ever-evolving; it’s always moving, it’s always changing.
Find out what other groups — philanthropic organizations, for instance — will support your future career endeavors, and volunteer in the area you want to be in next. Remember that people first judge you by the way you look, so make it a point to look like you belong in that area. For example, when I was the assistant district attorney in Brooklyn, it was important for me to dress a certain way so that when I walked into the courtroom, I had an extremely commanding presence. That helped me to get the high-profile cases and get noticed for television. Investigate what you need to know about the next step, and find out what can make you stand out from everyone else. Then, play