Preparing for Recovery: Become an Employer of Choice

By Andrew Paparozzi
In April 27, 2010

As the recovery takes a firmer hold on the economy and our industry, many of us will begin to search for talent to support both the increase in business activity and our growing adoption of new services and technologies. We’ll need people with skills, such as financial analysis, strategic planning, marketing, IT/programming, consultative selling, and business development, who traditionally have not considered employment in printing. Furthermore, as NAPL has long warned, we will have to compete not only with other printers but also with other industries for these skills because they are in demand economy-wide.

Competing successfully will require that we make a strong case for both our companies and our industry. We can begin by becoming an employer of choice. Among the characteristics of an employer of choice:

1. Performance-based cultures. Demanding organizations with high standards and consequences if those standards aren’t met. Have rigorous employee appraisal programs to assess employee development, identify top performers, and just as important to a performance-based culture, identify underachievers.

2. Hire up. Owners aren’t afraid to hire people who have greater expertise than they do and share responsibility with them. “Hire up. You get a pretty dysfunctional organization when no one is smarter than the boss,” notes one NAPL Leader.

3. Build their employer-of-choice brand. Promote company as an industry leader, financially stable, progressive, contributor to the community, and a place where performers thrive.

For more information on becoming an employer of choice and what you should think about when hiring the next generation of printing industry employees, please see the NAPL State of the Industry: Strategic Perspective 2010, available in May.

Andrew Paparozzi

Epicomm's Andrew Paparozzi, Vice President/Chief Economist, is well-known for his accurate and thoughtful discussions on the economy and US commercial printing industry. A foremost author and speaker on economic business trends in the printing industry, Paparozzi heads Epicomm's Printing Economic Research Center.

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