What do Aretha Franklin, Jackie Robinson and Rodney Dangerfield have in common? They all sought and emphasized the need for “respect”. Respect of others and respect for self.

In the business world and in our everyday lives, how do we attain and command respect? Respect is intangible; it is a feeling; and, it is an earned position. Respect is earned by words and by actions. Things like keeping promises, appointments, providing services, or just doing what you say you will do.

It applies to students, instructors and to employers and employees. Students can gain the respect of the instructor by handing in assignments on time, asking questions in class that are respectful of the instructor’s position, and treating fellow students with kindness and sincerity. Instructors and employers can gain respect by treating students and employees fairly and following through on promises. Employees can be thorough, complete projects when due, and take on responsibilities that are not necessarily theirs. It can also be earned by being personal. How personal are you in your communication? The more personal you are the more respect you will earn?

But there’s a secret to respect. If you master this secret you will be able to create respectful atmospheres in any environment you encounter. The secret is: In order to earn the respect of others, you must first respect yourself. And if you respect yourself that means that you have confidence in yourself. You have to like what you do. You have to be willing to serve. You have to like yourself. And you have to love yourself for what you are, what you believe in, and what or who you seek to become.

The secret is easy. Do the right thing all the time and respect will be yours. Say the right words, take the right actions and believe in your heart that you’re doing the best you can do – for yourself first, and for others second.

Margo Moore teaches BE 261 Starting a Small Business, CEO 001 Setting a Course for Your Business, CEO 002 Knowing Your Market, and CEO 003 Formulating Your Financial Strategy.

My Idea Will Be Stolen If I Market — Part 2

How can you protect yourself?

Name your product, service or concept. Then trademark it. Someone can steal the product idea but they can’t steal the name.

Copyright, trademark and patent the idea itself if you can. You are completely defenseless if you don’t. (But be aware that many fashion “ideas” are not easily defined in ways that can be trademarked – that’s why a trademarked name is important). Many questions of ownership and rights are determined by the date a trademark was filed.

Copyright is often determined by usage: if you’re using it, it’s yours.

By owning a patent, you are protected.

These solutions are all great but be aware that to go after someone for infringement can be expensive and often large companies are well aware of the financial advantage they have over you when “borrowing” ideas. So above all, speak with an attorney so you know exactly where you stand in this area.

AND MARKET. MARKET BIG. MARKET FAST. Get your name out there…
eventually all ideas are picked up by others, so being first and loud is your best defense.

Sandra Holtzman teaches CEO 035: Licensing.



Hey Fashion Designers!

I know you have tons of fabric that don’t make the cut at the end of your seasons or semesters and that you have fabric that’s been laying around for ages because you “one day want to use it” or you had a “great idea for a project” a year ago.  Let’s face it, it’s just taking up space in your little apt.

The solution? MATERIALS FOR THE ARTS!  This amazing reuse center takes designers unused fabrics and trims (and pretty much all types of art supplies) and donates them to schools and non-profits that don’t otherwise have access or funding to these much needed materials.

So next time you are doing some spring cleaning head over to the MFTA and support local schools and non-profits!

33-00 Northern Boulevard, 3rd Floor
Long Island City, N.Y. 11101
Email: info@mfta.nyc.gov


Dinna Soliman teaches CTB 012 Microsoft Excel 2: Fashion Design, CTD 131 Creating Complete Tech Packs in Illustrator, and various TOT: Fashion Design classes.

Advance your career. Pursue your passion.