New year predictions: Victoria Hart, DCB Group

By PrintWeek Team , Monday 31 December 2018

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DCB Group managing director Victoria Hart will pursue balance next year after a turbulent 2018 for the country.

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Hart: business leaders should "listen and take a step back in order to make an informed decision"

What’s at the top of your Christmas wish list this year?
Personally, that all of my nearest and dearest are surrounded by those they love and have a peaceful Christmas and New Year. Professionally, that all our clients and colleagues have a fabulous Christmas and New Year and enjoy some quality time with their loved ones and have a well-earned break. 

What trend (business or technology) do you think 2018 will be remembered for?
For us, the digital side of our business has grown exponentially and we are now printing on a far wider range of substrates than ever before. GDPR caused alarm and the reality was it seemed to have a positive impact on the industry rather than a negative. Brexit was, and still is, a hot topic for 2018 with people bracing themselves for the unknown and therefore being unwilling or unable to commit to bigger pictures. 

What do you think will represent the single biggest opportunity for printers in 2019 and why?
Looking at your carbon footprint as a business and trying to manage it. With the focus being on plastics this year and environmental impact, we need to be mindful in print that we are doing all we can to look after the environment. I also think, with GDPR regulations coming into force in May, that in 2019 we will see more personalised print (once consent for marketing is gained) and hopefully less spam emails/physical junk mail. 

What do you think will represent the single biggest threat for printers in 2019 and why?
Brexit due to the uncertainty it presents and the impact it could have on the industry such as paper sourcing issues and price hikes. 

What’s the one thing that the industry should do more of, or do better, in 2019?
Invest in its employees and their well-being. Encourage apprenticeships or work placements to ensure that school leavers find a passion for print and want to learn the skills of the trade.

What was your biggest disappointment in 2018?
I don’t want this to be a political interview but my answer would be the UK government and how the Brexit vote/discussions/negotiations have played out in the press. Industry-wise – the continued increase on paper and board prices. There does not seem to have been, nor can I see one on the horizon, any let up or stabilisation. 

What was your highlight of 2018?
A client that left us to move to be a larger print management organisation in 2017 asking to return to us as they missed the service and personal touches we provided for many years.

What are your hopes for 2019?
That our clients continue to prosper and that we continue to do a fantastic job for them. That we secure new business to keep the team invigorated and also see our business grow. That we gain clarity and certainty on the subject of Brexit.

What is your one-word view on Brexit?
Uncertainty/confusion. 

What was the best piece of advice you have ever been given?
Seek first to understand – i.e., listen and take a step back in order to make an informed decision. 

What if anything will you do differently in 2019?
Take more chances. 

What’s your favourite Christmas cracker joke?
Who is Santa’s favourite singer? Elf-is Presley. 

What was the best Christmas present you ever received?
Holiday to New York – love the city and was a fabulous present to receive last Christmas and enjoyed my week there in October. 

Are you making any New Year's resolutions? If so, what?
To strike a more balanced work/home life. To maintain perspective. To be more active.

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