Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Take On More

"Unless a man undertakes more than he possibly can do, he will never do all that he can." Henry Drummond (1851-1897) Scottish theologist and scientist.

One of the basic concepts of goal setting is to set oneor two BHAG targets. A BHAG is a Big Hairy Audacious Goal. A BHAG would be to grow sales at double your historic rate, to reduce set up on a machine by fifty percent or to land the top five large prospects in the coming quarter. These are goals that are not easy to hit - they are stretch goals.

Jim Collins in his book Good to Great discusses in detail the BHAG.

The reason for pursuing a goal like this is to stretch your mind and your abilities. When the human mind begins to see a goal like this, the first reaction is to reject it as unattainable. After the subconscious mind spends some time processing the goal, it begins finding little ways to get the goal accomplished. Then after a few brainstorming sessions and some back and forth with people that share your vision, the goal can be attacked.

Some believe it's better to plan for 5% growth and hit 5%. Others believe it's better to plan for 20% growth and hit 14%. Without a BHAG you are almost guaranteed to be in the 5% or less range.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Corporate Sustainability Report

In our plan to let all of our clients know what we are doing to go green, we are putting together a Corporate Sustainability Report. This is a marketing piece that covers the seven distinctive programs we have in place to reduce waste and also to save money and materials.

One of the programs that has the most impact is our solvent recovery unit. This isn't a glamorous machine but it is a machine that has given us a great impact with reducing our waste. In the printing process, a chemical is used to clean the printing presses. In the past we would buy the chemical, use the chemical and then dispose of the chemical using a waste disposal company. It would result in many barrels a year of waste. Now we are still using the same amount of chemical, but instead of using it and then disposing of it, we run it through a machine that is able to recycle the chemical and we are able to reuse the same chemical multiple times.

We are also a major recycler of paper waste. During the printing process, there is waste paper that is a result of the normal printing process. This waste is shredded, bailed and sent to a recycling company to allow the paper to be reused as part of new printing paper and other paper based products.

Our goal is to look for any area within the company that is producing waste and work to eliminate that from our processes. Not only is it good for our children and grandchildren, but it is also generally good for the bottom line. Our goal is to be around for decades to come and we believe this is part of what we have to do to be a company that not only sustains the environment, but also sustains a solid company for all of our owners. Being a 100% employee owned company, that means for all of our employees.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Ongoing Education

One of the new parts to my life is going back to school. I decided that if I had an MBA, I would be better prepared to grow and improve over the next ten years. After meeting with a local school, Ohio Dominican University, I am taking two prerequisites and then beginning my MBA in May.

My first class was Accounting which went pretty smooth. Many of the concepts are things I have used during my time at Hopkins Printing. The instructor did a great job helping me tie the concepts to my day to day operations.

Now I am taking a Statistics course. It is an eight week course and tomorrow I will complete the sixth class. One more take home test and then the final. Because of the level of detail, there isn't as much in this course that is applicable to my daily work. There have been a handful of things that I am able to use, so I am glad that I took the course.

My plan is to begin the MBA program on May the 12th and be done by April of 2010. I think it is going to be a rewarding journey.

Monday, April 7, 2008

A New Start

This is my first post to the Waterhouse Weekly Graphics blog. My goal is to share thoughts and ideas about graphics, printing, communication and personal effectiveness. For the last 18 years I have been working in the graphics world for a commercial printer in Columbus, Ohio - Hopkins Printing. We focus primarily on business to business communication using full color printing presses.

At Hopkins Printing, I serve as the V.P. of Sales & Marketing. I spend my time helping customers, helping our sales team, helping our Customer Support Team and doing some marketing. It is a position full of variety and full of opportunity for growth. It has been a fun and challenging 18 years.