Rising star: Emily Clarke, key account executive, Graphic Packaging International, Leeds

Thursday, July 23, 2020

Emily is 26 and has just notched up her fourth year in print, having joined the industry by chance. This year she became the first person to achieve a BPIF Level 5 distinction in her chosen qualification.

"No two days are the same"
"No two days are the same"

What did you study, and did you have a particular career in mind?

After joining Graphic Packaging International as an apprentice, I studied for the degree-level BPIF Level 5 Operations/Departmental Manager qualification, which I completed in 2020 and obtained a distinction. I was also the first person in the UK to achieve this qualification

How did you find your way into the industry?

I fell into the print and packaging industry by chance after I took a career break to travel the world. When I came back, I accepted the first job I was offered, which was an internal customer service role at Graphic Packaging International

Did you know anything about print beforehand?

I’d never thought about it before, so I didn’t know anything

What does your role entail?

My role is very varied, I travel a lot visiting customers, managing customer expectations and chasing new business opportunities. I work closely with internal operations and customer service teams

What’s the most enjoyable or interesting thing about it?

I love my job as it’s so varied, with no two days the same and I’m constantly learning something new. There are so many technical elements to print which is why it’s so interesting

Do you have an ideal career path mapped out?

No, I take every opportunity I am offered to develop my skill set further. I am ambitious but open minded as to my career and the path I take

What would be your dream job (not print related)?

Professional horse rider

What’s top of your playlist at the moment?

Rüfüs Du Sol ‘Innerbloom’

What’s your most-used app?


What has surprised you most about working in the printing industry?

How technical print is and the evolving technology/science behind the scenes, printing is very skilful and requires a lot training

What could the printing industry be doing more of to entice millennials into print?

Personally, it would be great to see the industry become more interactive. Perhaps going into schools, educating them on the prospects a job in print could deliver. I fell into the industry not realising that print is everywhere, not knowing how much impact it has on our daily lives

If you ruled the world...?

Woman empowerment would be top of my agenda


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