The mantra to create top notch print jobs

Apsi Forbes of Jak lays out the five commandments, infused with his blend of humour, humility and unerring discernment; about what makes this award-winning firm, the masters of print. WORDS: Apsi Forbes

08 Oct 2013 | By PrintWeek India

1. Never open a client discussion with a quotation
Some printers start dialogue with a customer quote; and the conversation remains stuck in that space. It never grows. There are exceptions, to this rule. But printers must ensure its not only about the money.
2. Avoid technical prologues
They can be confusing for a client; and at times, annoying. Just because you have visited Drupa and Fespa and know which specialty chemicals are included in a printing ink, and how additive concentrates and compounds can improve the gloss of a coffee table book; doesn’t mean the client is interested. Technical inputs are the back story, and you can drop it in anywhere you want.
3. Make notes about everything. Stay open, listen
Yes, there are print rules but sometimes rules can be broken. Sometimes a client wants a book with a mango bark cover page; or a rare type of binding. That’s nice. Set the rules aside and create some new magic. Scribble notes in a secret book – about all the really crazy ideas that you hear – for your own joy. Sometimes, some of these ideas actually come alive.
4. Be in love with print
Something that you feel will find its own form. Be crazy about every print job; and every piece of paper and kit that comes your way. It’s these little things that creates infinite possibilities in the mind. Be proud of the beautiful visions that your press is able to create. You may have not time to write poetry but that is exactly what your press is creating.
5. Believe in the power of print
The moment you start lamenting about it; and saying what a struggle it, then that vision remains intact in the mind of the customer and print buyer. Therefore don’t think (and highlight) only the obstacles. Help the client see the picture better. As a printer there is no fear or shame in the dignity of your experience, expertise and knowledge. 
The final commandment. When you print, always remember, you are printing for the world. Therefore make it worldclass.