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FLEXO Magazine : February 2010
FLEXO FEBRUARY 2010 www.flexography.org sessions. This means listening to their customers and sup- pliers, and filling the sessions with content that is relevant in today's challenging environment. We're talking about CPC expectations, Lean Manufacturing, prepress applications, raw material selection, application efficiency, emerging tech- nology and game changing insights to make flexography the process of choice. I believe they have all risen to the occasion, and this year's program is filled with insights that will lead to engaging discussions. Coffman: Being a session chair last year gave me a new perspective on the work that goes into preparing for each. Again, listening to the feedback from previous Forums, we asked each session chair to come up with speakers and con- tent that is relevant to today's flexo industry. They are all well known and respected in our industry and have put together some great sessions that should give all attendees their money's worth. Q: What feedback have you received from the session chairs that has generated some excitement for the upcoming show? Engelke: We initiated the team right after Forum 2009. From the start, the chairs were excited and engaged with their challenge. Don't get me wrong, chairing a session at Forum involves work. But, it is a labor that we all take on will- ingly and enthusiastically because we want to be part of the solution, and receive the rewards experienced by success. Coffman: All of the session chairs have worked hard since the end of last year's Forum and continue to give us positive feedback on our Forum Committee conference calls. What is exciting for me is to see how so many different individuals who have full time jobs spend so much of their time in putting together these sessions. And, because of their hard work, it is all coming together very nicely. Q: What feedback have you received from past years' Forums that you tried to address in this year's event? Engelke: This will be my third year directly involved in Forum planning. Each year we have learned, and every sub- sequent year we will continue to learn. As stated earlier, we have addressed multiple aspects of membership feedback. The message here is that each Forum committee is charged with meeting the challenges of a changing and dynamic glob- al economy and marketplace through Forum content. This is accomplished through participation of the membership itself. My co-chair, Mark Coffman, is on board for next year. Seek him out and volunteer to be part of the solution in 2011! Coffman: We do listen to feedback and try to act on as much of it as we can. That is why it is so important to provide the feedback when asked. We do not know what adjustments or changes are needed unless we hear from the attendees. I will be available at Forum 2010 and will listen to what you may have to say so we can continue to make improvements in the future. Q: What do you consider the greatest challenge in the flexographic printing industry today? How does the content of Forum 2010 seek to prepare attendees for such challenges? Engelke: In my opinion, the challenges for the flexo industry are not inclusive. All print processes are being challenged by other communication media and productivity expectations. What print does have is substance. Print and the premium package convey brand integrity, shelf appeal, information and product protection. It may some day be possible, but I've not yet been able to retrieve an actual piece of string cheese from an e-mail ad or a podcast! The challenge is to keep the process evolving as technology advances, anticipate new products/needs in the market to advance the goals of the CPCs, and to respond when called to any challenge. This year's Forum contains content in all of these areas. Seeing is believing. Coffman: There are many challenges in the flexographic printing industry today and it would be hard to say which is the greatest. I am sure that most printers believe the chal- lenges they currently have are the greatest or toughest. That, in turn, makes it the Forum Committee's challenge to come up with an Annual Forum that addresses many concerns. Please let us know how we did in 2010 with your feedback. Q: How has your role as Forum chair/co-chair improved your knowledge of the industry and enhanced your professional career? Engelke: It has been an honor being chair for Forum 2010. I have been able to network and participate with a multitude of the FTA membership. This brings a sense of industry support "We have several consumer product company representatives lined up on this year's program to evidence what flexo means to them as a company, talk about shelf appeal and color management, and help the design and converter community anticipate, develop and innovate their brand management solutions." ---Jean Engelke, FFTA Forum 2010 Chair