business alignment

Term of the Week: Emotional Alignment


Gilbert, Arizona-based Marshall Atkinson is one of the leading production and efficiency experts for the decorated apparel industry.  He is the owner of Atkinson Consulting, LLC. As a coach for shops in the industry, Atkinson focuses on operational efficiency, continuous improvement and workflow strategy, business planning, employee motivation, management and sustainability. He is a frequent trade show speaker, article and blog author, and is the host of InkSoft’s The Big Idea podcast. 

For more information go to, email, or call (850) 445-3155.

Emotional alignment is about being on the same page as someone. Now more than ever, we are searching for that human-to-human connection. We want to matter. We crave being included in a tribe or group. It’s how we label ourselves, and this happens in many different ways.

It can be the political party you belong to, the band that you follow, the sports team you cheer, the food or drink you consume, and even the shared experiences we have attending an event or going through challenges in our lives. These connections are why people bond after finishing a project together. We want to know where you are from, how you grew up, what movies you like, or where you went on vacation. We are looking for that emotional alignment constantly, which is why you need to share your story.

Look at your website or social media channels. Give it a critique. Are you telling your story? Is it flavored with your shop’s unique perspective and viewpoint? Are you sharing your journey? People are your customers. They relate to things that matter to them and want to identify and be in emotional alignment with the businesses around them. Be you. Share what’s going on. People buy on emotions more than they buy on facts or benefits. These are the sticky things.

Think about businesses you are in emotional alignment with and consider the “why” behind it. Is it because the owner has a son serving in the Marines? That they support and donate to cancer research? Do they have a shop dog that greets you when you walk in the door? Now, compare that to the story you are telling about your shop. Are you sharing stories so that others can get that emotional alignment with your business? Or are you only talking about some print or the latest sale on fleece?

Share your "why." Tell your tale. Describe your journey. Trust me; people want to know because they are looking for things to identify with and make that connection.

For more on how to culturally, financially, and physically align you and your business, check out Marshall's article in the November issue of Printwear