Promoting the industry ~ Focused on Members Success
What a great time to be in the printing industry! I am very excited, and yet very nervous, about taking over as chairman of PICA. Why, you may ask? It is because there are some really big shoes to fill in this position. Most of the successful printers in the Carolinas have been Chairman of our organization. Their companies have more staff and resources than my company, and that can be intimidating. Then I think about what my company has gained by being part of PICA, and I realize that we all have many resources available to us that most of us never use.
As a member of PICA, you are also a member of PIA. These two great organizations have the ability to answer almost any question you can ask. Do you need a spill plan? How about OSHA questions? Human Resource answers? These are real problems that members face every day. The answers to these and many, many other questions are just a phone call away.
I am out seeing our customers weekly, and one of the first things they ask is, “Why did you join PICA in the first place? You are a trade printer -- what can PICA do for you?” My answer is networking. I have made more friends and business partners through this organization, and what I spent on dues could never have paid for that much marketing and one on one conversation. The Summer and Fall Conferences are probably two of the most valuable networking opportunities there are. I have enjoyed and learned a lot about printing at these events (not to mention honing my photography skills).
This year’s Summer Conference will be held at the Grove Park Inn, and I think this is one of the greatest destinations for our Summer Conference. Our Fall Conference will be put on hold for one year, and then we will bring it back in 2013. Economic hardship and low participation have taken a toll on our conference events. I would like to see our three major events continue to be enjoyed for years to come, but without membership help, this may not be an easy task. We are working harder, and with less staff, than we had just a few years ago. It is hard to get away, and you think, “I can’t leave my business now -- we are right in the middle of a large job! What if something goes wrong?” I have found that our staff can handle almost any problem that comes up, and I am willing to bet that everyone on your staff is as capable as ours. A Friday away from the business at a conference will no doubt do you some good, help clear your mind, and get you ready for your next project. Come to the conference and learn, talk to your competitors, and relax. I am sure it will be a worthwhile weekend.
As your Chairman, I will put on my shoes and do the best I can to bring you information that will help your business, and give you direction and resources that will serve your company.
BCE of Charlotte