I had worked for some of the largest print and packaging companies in the UK, learning invaluable lessons about the industry. My journey started as a trainee platemaker and printer, progressing to print production planning and purchasing. I was eventually let loose with customers and my knowledge expanded from the technical aspects of printing to understanding the needs of suppliers in the fresh food sector.
As my career progressed in sales, I learnt the importance of customer relations built on reliability, honesty and trust. Sadly, these important elements were not consistently adopted by some of the businesses I had worked for. When I started hearing this from my customers there was one choice to make… stop moaning about it and try to do it better.
Well not immediately! I had the plan and the vision but no money, accreditation or an expensive thing called a press! Fortunately my path crossed with my business partner Nigel Tollman who was already operating a successful carton printing facility. Nigel had a wealth of experience, BRC certification, skilled staff, trading history, a similar ethos as well as the same drive to succeed. What we needed now was a press that could manufacture labels. After a Dragon’s Den style meeting, finance was applied for, our necks put on the line and Promo Labels was born.
This arranged marriage wasn’t easy, my now business partner had another business to run, my first oversight, the second was that the phones didn’t ring. Gone were the days of plush, glass retail head offices – I now found my brogues inch deep in fertile soils meeting the UK growers of fruit and veg. How the mighty had fallen! Except it didn’t feel like that. It was humbling and informative and allowed me to adapt our business model to really suit the people who dealt with packaging labels day to day.
We put our customers first, became flexible, uncomplicated and hopefully easy to deal with.
My shoes are now clean, I don’t print during the night and sell during the day. We have more presses, a great committed team and together we are determined to move our business forward and become the printer of our customer’s choice.
Hopefully you will join the journey.