New year opportunities
By Alyssa Dalton
“We think, mistakenly, that success is the result of the amount of time we put in at work, instead of the quality of time we put in,” Arianna Huffington, co-founder and former editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post, writes in her book, Thrive: The third metric to redefining success and creating a life of well-being, wisdom, and wonder.
With the start of every new year comes the opportunity to assess how your business has performed the last 12 months. It’s a time for reflection and analysis, goal setting and future planning.
As entrepreneur, investor, author and speaker Gary Vaynerchuk says: “You have to understand your own personal DNA. Don’t do things because I do them or Steve Jobs or Mark Cuban tried it. You need to know your personal brand and stay true to it.”
What are your priorities for 2019? Is this the year your business will invest in new equipment assets to expand your product capabilities and offerings? Or maybe you and your team have decided to focus on operational efficiencies in an effort to minimize makeready times, costs and waste. 2019 might also serve as the year to refocus your company culture.
“If you try to implement tools and techniques before setting your priorities, you’ll do it wrong,” recommends Bulletproof 360 founder Dave Asprey, in his book, Game changers: What leaders, innovators and mavericks do to win at life.
At the top of most organizations’ new year resolutions – in spite of sector and mandate – is the constant goal of ensuring the customer remains at the heart of the brand experience.
“Whether via service interactions, product quality or overall brand, experience has become the deciding factor that determines whether or not a customer will do business with a company. In order to capitalize, small businesses and startups looking to grow must build a culture that cares about the customer. And to really succeed, there can be no fake-it-till-you-make-it. Customer experience has to be a part of your company’s DNA,” Peri McDonald, Regional Vice President of Customer Success at Salesforce writes in the article, How to make customer success the heart of your small business.
Caring for and ensuring the happiness of one’s own employees, she notes, comprise the pivotal first step in the pursuit of satisfied customers — a directive that is truly relevant to organizations of any size.
“Why? Because an employee’s experience directly affects a customer’s experience. When employees are happy and actualized – and this is especially important for smaller businesses with smaller teams – it compounds their desire to help others. Besides, a ‘culture of caring’ shows no limits: You cannot legitimately care about customers if you don’t care about the people serving them,” she explains.
As author and motivational speaker Zig Ziglar simply puts it: “If people like you, they’ll listen to you, but if they trust you, they’ll do business with you.”
This year PrintAction will once again push our offerings to best serve this creative and dynamic community. Our mandate is to be your invaluable industry resource, and we strive to achieve this by refining some of our existing initiatives, while testing out a few new ideas as well.
On June 13, the fourth annual PrintForum returns to The International Centre in Mississauga, Ont., with engaging educational sessions and a robust tradeshow. Designed to help printing companies build their business, the event provides attendees with the opportunity to explore new technology trends and revenue streams, learn from thought-leadership panel discussions, and see demonstrations of new products and solutions on exhibit. We want you to leave inspired and armed with knowledge.
As well, our annual Canadian Printing Awards opens its call for submissions this summer. Though 14 years in the running, things are never stagnant with the nation-wide program — we continue to finesse the application process to help make it easier for you to submit your entries, and work to deliver a gala experience that tops the previous year’s.
And as always, we work to keep you informed on the latest news with timely and authentic editorial. This is where I need you, dear reader, to help. You are the expert, entrenched in the everyday happenings of the print world. Reach out and tell me what I should know about. Do you have a suggestion on what PrintAction should cover? Perhaps you are looking to learn more about a certain press technology, or have a story to share. Better yet, invite me to your facility and share your latest successes with me. Let me help tell your story.
Consider tech startup investor and entrepreneur Tim Ferriss’ bold advice for this new year: “It isn’t enough to think outside the box. Thinking is passive. Get used to acting outside the box.”
From all of us at PrintAction, we wish you a happy, healthy and prosperous 2019.
This editorial was originally published in the January/February 2019 issue of PrintAction, now available online.