The Value of Creativity in Business and the Print Industry

The Value of Creativity in Business and the Print IndustryHave you ever thought of the value creativity in business brings to you, to others, and to the print industry?

Without creativity in business, we would not have ink jet printing, digital presses, or web-to-print software. There would be no apps for phones and tablets, nor would we have bar codes.

There wouldn’t even be unique labels and packaging that make a product stand out from the crowd.

Creativity helps us advance our businesses and ourselves. But we sometimes get so caught up in the day-to-day we do not employ our creativity in our print business.

Here are several reasons to consider focusing more on creativity in business. When we do these things, we will bring more value to the print industry.

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Culture: The Print Industry Leader’s Best Growth Opportunity

Culture: The Print Industry Leader's Best Growth OpportunityWhat creates the greatest opportunity for long-term success for a print industry company?

Culture.

Culture, as defined by Merriam-Webster, is, “the beliefs, customs, arts … of a particular group,” and, “a way of thinking, behaving or working that exists in a place or organization.”

It is the print industry leader’s responsibility to set the culture.

It is the responsibility of the other members of the team to support and propagate the culture.

Culture is critical to long-term success.

Because people come and go, having a strong culture that drives the way the company conducts its business is the best way to keep the company values strong. That way, even when people leave, the culture will remain. Read more

Why You Should Blog: Reasons for Print Industry Leaders

 Print Industry Leaders: Why You Should BlogHave you ever thought about why you should blog—or perhaps, why you should not?

The act of blogging must be much bigger than simply writing a blog. It must be part of a mission you are passionate about. Without that mission, blogging becomes drudgery.

If you have your eye on a goal and a blog is part of executing that goal, then it won’t just be about cranking out a blog. But the thought must be about working toward your mission.

In the same vein, blogging cannot be about just making money. That’s like saying the goal of a business is to make money. In my opinion, the goal of a business is to serve others. Without money a business cannot survive, but making money is not its ultimate goal or its purpose for being.

Similarly, we wouldn’t say the goal of life is to eat. We need to food to live, but that is not our purpose.

Find your purpose. Whether it’s serving and helping others or something else entirely, if blogging is part of how you accomplish your purpose then that’s why you should blog.

Keep that purpose in mind and blogging will be something you will want to do, as it takes you toward your purpose.

Here are a few less-commonly cited reasons why you should blog:

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Changing Leadership Styles in the Print Industry

Changing Leadership Styles in the Print IndustryLeadership styles are always evolving—changes have been especially notable in the past ten years.

It used to be that the most effective leadership style was “Command and Control.” This style was inspired by the way we led our troops in World War II. This method has continued to find favor right up to the present moment in the print industry.

However, this leadership style has given way to a more effective style we can label “Inspire and Engage.”

In a command and control environment, leaders decide to tell everyone what to do, and subordinates are expected follow orders.

On the other hand, leaders can choose an inspire and engage style. In this environment, we communicate to our team the vision, mission, values, milestones, and plans that will inspire them. Then we ask them to personally get engaged in helping the company to achieve those print industry goals.

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The Lifetime Value of a Customer in the Print Industry

The Lifetime Value of a Customer in the Print IndustryHave you ever thought of the lifetime value of a customer? Have you ever thought of why that would even be important to understand or calculate?

The lifeblood of any business is its customers. They are the purpose of our business—and any purpose other than serving your customers puts your company in a vulnerable position.

The fact is, demanding customers make us better. Their needs help bring about never-ending improvement as we make changes for their benefit.

Since customers are the purpose of our business, it’s important to understand and calculate the lifetime value of a customer.

There are many ways to look at the value of a customer—here is one way: Read more

Prune Your Print Business for Better Efficiencies

Prune Your LifeWhen was the last time you pruned your print business? Or your time and activities? Or your focus?

Pruning may be one of the most important activities you can spend your time on in order to accelerate your progress toward your goals.

As we prune away those items that do not bear fruit, we have the opportunity to re-allocate and re-focus our time and effort on items that really make a difference in reaching the vision and goals we have for our print business.

Here are several ideas and ways to prune your print business or your own activities:

  • Review Your Vision and Goals. When we do this, we refocus our minds on what we desire to achieve. This creates a better alignment between what we want to achieve and the activities we spend our time on daily.
  • Define Your “Why. Once we have an understanding of our vision and goals, it is important to define the why—the reason we want to reach our vision and goals. The “why” or the purpose provides the fuel and motivation to keep going when progress becomes challenging. Knowing our purpose will aid us in figuring out what activities we want to spend our time on daily.
  • Conduct a Time Inventory. Go online and find a weekly time inventory sheet or use an Excel file that is broken into 15 minute increments. Take the time to record what you are working on during that week. If we are going to spend more time on what matters, we first have to know where we are spending our time so we can prune what does not help us reach our goals from our schedule and activities.
  • Review the Time Inventory. Examine the time inventory and highlight those activities that are not contributing to the vision and goals you have for your print business. This will give you a sense of what you can prune.
  • Delegate or Eliminate. Create a list of those activities that you want to stop doing. Next, decide whether the activity is even worth being done by you or someone else in your company. If the activity is not worth doing in the sense that it does not take you or your print business where you want to go and there are no negative consequences of not doing it then eliminate it. Next, review all the remaining activities and decide how you can possibly delegate it to someone else and delegate it. If you need additional support for the important activities, consider contacting a company that you can contract for a part-time person such as eaHelp.

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