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FLEXO Magazine : February 2008
and change it. In particular, it's one of the strongest sessions, due to all that's happening in this area. We've heard a lot about the problems that are occurring. How do you expect Forum 2008 to best meet printers'/convert- ers' needs and expectations? How will it address the most critical needs of the flexo printer today? Gilbert: We're banking on the "by the people, for the people" approach. Our goal is to have attendees leave with a notepad full of to-dos. That's the advantage that having the printers chair will bring. Mazur: This Forum, I'll say again, is for printers by printers. All of the session chairs are representing big converters. There is very little supplier influence. The FTA was formed by and for printers/converters, so we worked hard to make sure that we are addressing what they want to hear. Every aspect of this Forum has been designed with what printers want and need. If a printer attending Forum is looking for advice/ideas/how- to instruction on achieving color quickly, controlling the vari- ables, waste reduction initiatives, or productivity enhancement tools, what sessions require his/her attendance and why? How can he/she develop the right agenda to maximize efficient use of his/her time? Gilbert: This will be addressed in a lot of sessions, particularly FIRST/FQC. Part of FIRST's mission is to provide procedures and specification to achieve just that. Emerging Technologies will also address this, though. In addition, Business Management, while not focused on on-press matters, will also assist in issues of train- ing, SOPs, etc. The best thing to do, really, is bring more than one person so that you can bring more information back. Mazur: In terms of the everyday pressroom type of thing, the Faster, Better Cheaper Session is where that's going to be. In ad- dition, though, sustainability is going to influence the way we produce products, and so there is valuable information in there too. Prepress is also important in that area. Ultimately, I don't want to put one over the other. How can a printer/converter use Forum 2008 to his/her advan- tage in working to keep his/her operation competitive in today's ever-evolving business climate? Gilbert: The first thing to do is attend. The competitive advan- tage is going to be found in every one of the sessions. There is a lot of pressure on the printing business to be faster, better and cheaper. In addition, hearing other printers/converters address how they are coping with these factors, and listening to their an- swers to other issues, might give an attendee a great idea of how to apply similar solutions in his/her own plant. Just being in this environment, whether during a Q&A or at dinner, is a great net- working opportunity.