PPAI Names Diversity Development and Engagement Officer
Promotional Products Association International (PPAI), Irving, Texas, announced the addition of Seth Barnett as the association's first diversity development and engagement manager. According to a press release in PPB, Barnett served for more than three years as the association's government relations manager.
With this new position, Barnett will focus on strategic integration of demographic diversity in PPAI's programs, messaging and outreach. In his previous position, he supported the association's Legislative Education Action Day (L.E.A.D.), and helped develop and grow L.E.A.D. Local.
"The diversity challenge of our industry primarily focuses on generational demographics," Barnett said in a Q&A with PPAI. "The global economy is at a crossroads where, within the next 10 years, most of the workforce will be nearing retirement and there will be a tremendous need for young leadership. Our industry is no stranger to this demographic challenge, as it priorly employs baby boomers and Gen Xers."
Barnett added that his two primary objectives will be to address the industry's generational divide between baby boomers, Gen Xers and Millennials, and to better understand new demands set forth by younger customers to compete in the marketplace as it grows toward the younger generation.
"During the first 90 days [in my new role], I will work to establish a foundation and begin to help those in the industry have necessary conversations about their employment demographics and their visibility in the marketplace," Barnett said in the Q&A. "It is our goal to establish long-term plans that address potential future industry demographic shifts as this position progresses. Many industries have begun to forecast the ways demographics will affect business several years down the road. It is my hope that as the research, conversations and education about this issue continues, we will be able to better predict economic and demographic challenges."
“The association, our industry and our thousands of member companies must continue to evolve to reflect and meet the needs of an increasingly diverse workforce and marketplace,” said Paul Bellantone, CAE, PPAI's president and CEO. “PPAI is taking a leadership role in helping our members understand the trends and issues facing their businesses and turn them into opportunities for growth. PPAI's new diversity development and engagement manager will focus on helping our members attract and retain a younger, more diverse workforce, and understand the challenges and needs of an evolving buyer and marketplace.”
For more information on PPAI, visit www.ppai.org.