I have a soft spot for Kodak. So news that they are exiting Chapter 11 was a bright spot for me. I started my print selling career in a division of Kodak, called Itek Graphics. Since I knew nothing about print at the time in 1975, I was sent to their training centre in North London and spent a couple of weeks getting to grips with offset lithography. I was amazed to find that all the colours that were being printed on a sheet came from only three colours and black.
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When I was a young salesman, in the days before mobile phones, the internet, social media and open neck collars, my old boss gave all of us in the sales team a tie pin. It was in the form of a gold bar with the letters YCDBSOYA in a prominent position across it. You can imagine it always caused a comment when customers saw it as they wanted to know the meaning of the acronym. It was in fact a reminder to us young sales people that “You Can’t Do Business Sitting on Your Axx”.
Monday, 26 August 2013 | By Gerry Mulvaney
News that the world’s first test tube beef burger has been produced in Europe has dominated the front pages recently. It appears that scientists in the Netherlands have managed to grow stem cells taken from a cow into a form of beef.
A traveller stops on an Irish country road and ask directions from a local. “Well Sir, if you are heading there, I wouldn’t be starting from here” is the reply. This rather apocryphal story came back to me recently when I was looking around the Landa Digital Printing facilities in Rehovot.
I didn’t need a wooden snail. I didn’t actually want one either, but I have got one now!
Let me explain. I have been on vacation in Spain and most days when on the beach, we are visited regularly by “looky looky” men.
Telling an Israeli that they cannot do something is unlikely to achieve the expected result. The same applies to telling them they cannot do something within a given timescale. Telling an Israeli that something is impossible just sets a challenge that has to be overcome. These are the immediate lessons that I have learned from my recent trip to the Landa head office and factory in Rehovot just south of Tel Aviv.
They say that you can’t make an omelette without breaking an egg. Judging by my recent trip to Landa in Israel, Benny has used up a whole hen coop setting up Landa Labs and Landa Digital Printing. The Landa facilities are in Rehovot, 40 minutes from Tel Aviv, on the way to Jerusalem and home to the Weizmann Institute of Science, from where many of the Landa team have graduated.
One of my early lessons as a salesman was that I had two ears and one mouth. They should be used in that proportion – in other words you should be listening a lot more than you are speaking. You should also be aware that waiting to speak is not listening.