New year predictions: Charles Jarrold, BPIF

PrintWeek team
Monday, December 28, 2015

12 months into the job as the Fed’s chief executive, Charles Jarrold, is pretty happy with the way 2015 panned out. Next year, however, his hope is that the industry turns its perceived threats into opportunities.

What’s at the top of your Christmas wish list this year?
A Norfolk Christmas for us, I’m just looking forward to a few days off, and time with friends and family.

What trend (business or technology) do you think 2015 will be remembered for?

Within print, the on-going shift away from generic and high volume, towards more bespoke and higher value, and an appreciation of the unique ability to engage that print has. MarketReach’s Private Life of Mail seemed to sum that up with some brilliant research.

Away from print, it seems like the year of Uber, but that maybe due to the fact that I’m now spending a lot more time in London.

What do you think will represent the single biggest opportunity for printers in 2016 and why?

Not a new theme, but moving away from “how cheap do we need to be” towards “what are you trying to achieve as a business – as trusted partners”, it’s a healthy trend.

What do you think will represent the single biggest threat for printers in 2016 and why?

In a sector that’s undergoing so much change, the biggest threat is finding out that your key customers’ business model has changed, and that you haven’t anticipated that. But if you have, it’s an opportunity.

What’s the one thing that the industry should do more of, or do better, in 2016?

I’ve mentioned the trends in printing, and how they present a great opportunity. If I were to pick one just one thing though – business is about people, and training is key to developing people. I’d like to see staff at all levels in our sector considering their training and development needs, and then taking action.

What was your biggest disappointment in 2015?

Obviously England’s performance in the Rugby comes to mind, especially the game against Wales (well done Wales!).

What was your highlight of 2015?

First year at the BPIF, and I’m pleased to say it’s been great and I remain impressed with the work the BPIF does. The absolute best bit had to be the graduation on our Members Day was genuinely moving – a tribute to the Graduates, my predecessor Kathy [Woodward], and all the team here who delivered the training.

What are your hopes for 2016?

I’m more convinced than ever about the role that the BPIF can play as a valuable resource for the industry – whether that’s through training, membership support, legal or business advice. Training is, and will remain a key part of our activities, but we’re also developing a wider range of services, from Vision in Print and legal services through to health, safety and environment. We’re going to be working hard on raising awareness of these services, and I hope, encouraging our membership to take advantage of what we have to offer.

What was the best piece of advice you have ever been given?

I could probably write an essay on this alone! Two ears, one mouth – use in that ratio isn’t a bad place to start.

What was the most important thing that you learnt in 2015?

I’ve met so many great people this year, in our sector, in our organisation and in other Trade Associations. They’re people whose brains I will continue to pick, as we continue to develop the BPIF

What if anything will you do differently in 2016?

I really like getting out visiting members; it’s interesting, and invaluable in understanding what we can do to help – more time doing that, I hope!

If you’re thinking of going to Drupa next year, what are you keen to see?

I’m particularly interested in the overall trends in the industry, as much as any individual technical innovations. It’s that overall impression – who’s there, what’s the mix, and what seems to be interesting people most, that I find valuable.

What was the best Christmas present you ever received?

Waterproof cycling socks were a pretty big hit with me last year – weirdly!

Are you making any New Year's resolutions? If so, what?

Probably, but not sure what, yet – a glass or two of wine over the festive break should help me think them through.

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