Executive Interview
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   Executive Interviews   
An Interview with
Edward BOCK
President
ALL4LABEL

All4Labels is one of the world’s leading label companies and a pioneer in sustainable and digital packaging solutions with a specialization on the home and personal care as well as food & beverage markets. We are recognized by our customers as a preferred provider of pressure sensitive, shrink sleeve and security labels as well as flexible solutions. All4Labels has been a long-standing partner for major local and international companies in Europe, Latin America, Africa and China.

Publish Date: 
9 March 2022

Tell us about your background, and what are you most passionate about?

Intra-prenuer with demonstarted success accomplished for Europe and USA multinationals. Broad management know-how in scale up to 160+ people and multiple locations with dual functional expertise in Sales+Business Development and Supply Chain Management+Procurement over USD100m P&L. Private Equity Portfolio leadership and Public company experience.

Significant experience includes:
#P&L responsibility
#Strategy Development
#Sales Executions
#Operations Management
#Supply Chain Management
#Procurement and Sourcing
#Change Management and Restructuring
#Acquisition integration

Solid record of top line growth, operational performance improvement, cost reduction programs and corporate acquisitions in multiple industries covering Consumer Goods, Retail, Promotional premiums, Paper Products/Print/Packaging, Toys and Apparels.

 

Passionate about investing in the areas of Sustainability, Circular Economy and AgriTech.

Describe a time you had to make a tough decision (e.g. budget cuts, organizational restructuring, market withdrawal, etc.). What did you do and what was the result?

Downsize, layoffs and/or salary cut?

 

And I am sure that many of my fellow readers have faced the same predications in the last 24 months of running their organisation.

 

1. Forced to act - as that impact the survival and existence of the entire company. Take the hit while minimising the impact as much as practical.

2. Top-To-Bottom - take a haircut on salaries across the board

3. No layoffs BUT take unpaid work leave

 

And the boat is still floating and progressing.

 

 

How would others define your communication style? Do you prefer to be close to your employees or maintain a healthy distance, and why?

I have over the years, incorporated my leadership methodologies with Holacracy, Distributed Management and Lead-To-Serve as my brand of management that crafts my communications style.

 

I view organizations as - 𝘼 𝙡𝙞𝙫𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝙨𝙮𝙨𝙩𝙚𝙢 𝙩𝙝𝙖𝙩 𝙙𝙞𝙧𝙚𝙘𝙩𝙨 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙛𝙡𝙤𝙬 𝙤𝙛 𝙚𝙣𝙚𝙧𝙜𝙮, 𝙩𝙧𝙖𝙣𝙨𝙛𝙤𝙧𝙢𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝙩𝙝𝙖𝙩 𝙛𝙡𝙤𝙬 𝙞𝙣𝙩𝙤 𝙙𝙚𝙨𝙞𝙧𝙚𝙙 𝙧𝙚𝙨𝙪𝙡𝙩𝙨. In line with this, open communications, employee enpowerment and organisation transparency is at the centre that translate into driving the 6 core organisation activities:

 

✔️ People: through maximizing their energy contribution

✔️ Business Processes: by minimizing energy loss

✔️ Markets & Innovation: driving demand and revenue

✔️ Financials & Metrics: providing the right feedback system

✔️ Culture: setting the context

✔️ Leadership: bringing it all together

 

How has the industry been changing in recent years? What do you think are the biggest challenges your industry will face in the next 5 years?

I can already see the following for the future of this industry:

 

1. Sustainability and purpose-driven technology will be higher on the agenda

As organisations accelerate their sustainability initiatives, manufacturers and channel partners must deliver technology services with a lower environmental impact. This can be achieved through enhanced data analysis and reporting, along with circular products and services, carbon data analysis, and process automation. For instance, IoT sensors and cloud-based platforms can unlock new opportunities for measurement and monitoring of environmental impact in smart building and office environments. In addition, cloud print services can play a part here – shifting customers from many on-premises servers to the cloud presents the opportunity to reduce IT consumption of energy and related carbon emissions.

 

2. Cloud momentum will boost cloud print services adoption

Cloud has been the lynchpin of rapid digital transformation for many organisations. Scalability, reduced IT burden and agility are seeing more organisations accelerate their shift to the cloud. Oragnisation should build cloud expertise to enable and extend their legacy infrastructure to cloud environments but also give access to new technologies and future proof the IT environment.

 

3. Advanced analytics will unlock digitisation opportunities

Print industry leaders must become data driven and embed a data-driven culture across their organisation. This goes beyond data analytics to becoming insight-driven to gain true customer intelligence.  Manufacturers must use their goldmines of data – across products and customers – not only to improve product design but also to deliver new business models and drive better customer engagement.

One of the many challenges facing the print industry is understanding the changing digital customer and connecting disparate data silos to predict customer needs. Predictive analytics is key to turning disparate customer data into coherent insights and provides a means for organisations to uncover further revenue opportunities for digital workflow automation services.

 

4. Intelligent automation will become more accessible boosting workforce productivity

Intelligent automation will help organisations reduce cost, mitigate risks and improve user experience. While intelligent automation, enhanced by artificial intelligence (AI) can help re-imagine or optimise existing business processes, robotic process automation (RPA) can automate existing manual and repetitive tasks. As such, intelligent automation can free up employees to focus on high value tasks. Over the next year, RPA will become accessible to more businesses, bridging the gap between manual interaction and full automation.

 

And one more,

The metaverse promises to create an immersive, interactive and shared digital world that brings together mixed reality – augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) – along with 3D holographic avatars, IoT and digital twins. While it may seem early days for the business metaverse, immersive and interactive technology like VR and AR looks set to change the face of virtual collaboration.

What personality traits make a good leader?

For me personally, I adhere and advocate to these 6 factors as a practicing leader myself.

 

1. Intelignce - both EQ and IQ

2. Integrity

3. Concientious

4. Self-Esteem

5. Extraversion

6. Openness

 

One may not have it all, but can aspire to acquiring them over time.

What does the future hold for your company?

The consensus are that big changes are coming for the industry.

 

EMBRACING INNOVATION

As companies merge and streamline in record numbers, there will be fewer manufacturers, merchants, and printers. However, the ones that vigorously adopt new technology will thrive and grow. There are a surprising number of new opportunities, but these companies must be willing to make significant changes to take advantage of them. A well-positioned printer is really becoming a communications company, offering solutions above and beyond a traditional print facility. It’s certainly not traditional print work. When you look around today, everything you see is printed, but people don't connect that with the printing industry. And that's the future.

 

INTEGRATING WITH DIGITAL TECHNOLOGY

Print will also increasingly team up with digital media. There’s an interconnectedness . We're not apart from the 21st century; we are very much a part. Case in point: a game on the  Nintendo Switch uses printed cardboard costumes to enable the user to experience being a robot. Both AR and VR present great opportunities for print down the road.

 

Even the way we print has become digital, and the presses are getting smaller and more efficient.Printers that take advantage of new digital technologies will forge ahead at record speed.

 

3D printing is another way that print and digital will continue to collide. 3D printing takes current technology and leverages it in innovative ways to create new technology. For instance, it uses the same heads as inkjets, with a different medium. So this is repurposed technology that takes us into the next decade or so. That's what makes it sort of fascinating. We can reuse that technology and adapt it for future applications without having to reinvent the wheel.

 

GETTING MORE CUSTOMIZED

As technology evolves, marketers will continue to drill down to more finely customize pieces for specific customers. For instance, there will be smaller runs that are highly customized. This is a win-win for all. Customers will receive more relevant information, and companies won’t waste money trying to cast larger nets. The traditional, mainstream blast-out-a-million-copies of something—I see that just dying a slow death.

Contact

Edward BOCK

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