Text: Kateřina Misiarzová
WHY “For a cup of coffee”?
- we are still growing from a small printing company with 19 employees, we’ve become one of the biggest printing houses in Europe with an international impact and more than 600 employees.
- despite our size, I still want to keep the family atmosphere in the company. I used to know every employee earlier but now it’s almost impossible.
- with a good coffee and in an informal atmosphere the discussion is much more easier and interesting ideas come up.
- I am interested in your opinions and suggestions.
- I want you to be informed directly from the source.
- we are an open society and we talk about the issues we care about and we need to discuss them together and openly.
- I don’t want important things to go unaddressed and potential problems to be covered up.
- I want to personally answer your questions or issues related to our strategy and look for opportunities how to involve all of us.
- Want to share my thoughts, key news or explain steps we are taking and planning at FINIDR.
During August, the first informal meetings of employees with the owner of our printing plant, Jaroslav Drahoš, took place. For the first, so-called pilot “coffee”, he visited the logistic department and the bindery at FINIDR B.
The discussion with a good coffee and refreshments was held in a nice atmosphere. These informal meetings allow staff to ask the owner any question, suggestion or comment. In addition to the main topic which is the company’s strategy, operational matters, informal issues and working atmosphere were also discussed. Many of the questions came in advance so that Mr Drahoš could get prepared for them properly. There were also straight questions on the spot. Interesting suggestions subsequently emerged from the meeting. These were resolved in a very short time. After a week, Mr Drahoš met with the heads of these departments again and briefed them on the way forward and on the resolution of key issues and proposals.
And what questions for example did the owner answer?
What made you decide to plant trees in the Beskydy Mountains for every order? What was your path to this philosophy of FINIDR?
I am convinced that it makes sense to produce sustainably, to be in harmony with the environment and to look for ways to continuously improve in this area. The latest printing machines we have purchased are CO2 neutral, where all the emissions generated in the production of these machines have been offset as part of compensation programmes. With this considerable money, trees are being planted in predefined locations. I confess, however, that this model was not very gripping for us, because the money generated by this compensation programme was used to plant trees somewhere in Bolivia. It was very elusive for us, so we decided to create our own programme to support the planting of trees right in our region where we live. We have committed to plant one tree for every order that is despatched of our printery. In addition, with the guidance of a professional non-profit organization which helps us to select the appropriate location and type of seedlings, we are able to see how each planting is doing. Since 2021, we have added more than 31,000 new trees to the Beskydy. At the last planting, we even learned that the sage grouse has returned to our forests thanks to the reforestation. These positive stories also prove that what we are doing really makes sense. I look forward to continuing our planting efforts this fall.
We´ve heard there won’t be a company party at the end of the year. Can you give us any more information on that?
For two decades, the Christmas party has always been held just before Christmas, but as it happens at this time of the year, it is a very busy and hectic time for most of us, when we also long for a well-deserved rest after the Christmas market. For this reason, we have decided to move our company parties to March. However, after the covid came, there was a period when we could not do events at all. However, as soon as the covid restrictions were called off, we took the first opportunity and decided to have an exceptional party again before Christmas. And when will our next company party be? Normally, it would be in March 2024. Because we are also celebrating our 30th anniversary as a printing house this year, we have decided to bring the party forward to June 2024 to join it with this important celebration.
How long will we be in FINIDR B? Is there any plan to build a new hall?
Although the historic Prochaska Printing House is over 200 years old and the logistics here are far from ideal, we have managed to set up processes together so that we are able to produce efficiently even today. I very much appreciate the approach of the employees in both FINIDR “A” and “B” and I believe that we will continue to produce in these premises in the future years. As for the construction of the new hall, we are currently working on obtaining a building permit. However, today’s uncertain times do not favour such large investments being made now. Above all, we need to invest with minimum risk. That is why we now expect to produce in the FINIDR “B” for at least another five years.
And how do the employees themselves evaluate this informal meeting?
The Expedition team:
“We appreciate the time Mr Drahoš gave us. It is not at all common in all companies and not everyone is lucky enough to sit down with the owner of the company (during working hours and with rich refreshments) and openly discuss the problems of their workplace or department.”
“We felt comfortable and relaxed. Open welcoming atmosphere, owner in good mood. The seating area was designed to make us feel comfortable, plus in our workplace. If it was in a boardroom, everyone would feel it as a work thing (less personal).”
“For me, the most beneficial theme was Strategy. What we appreciated the most was Mr. Drahos’ information on FINIDR’s long-term strategy.”
“It was beneficial and conducted in a relaxed atmosphere where one could ask Mr. Owner anything, even personal matters.”
Bookbindery team, FINIDR B:
“Sitting down for coffee was very nice. Both the place and the way of sitting on pallets, refreshments, good atmosphere. We were very pleased to hear that everyone is important to the company – we are pleased that you see us and take us as co-workers.”
“I really enjoyed the “For a cup of coffee” meeting. I would like to have more meetings like this.”
“I wanted to thank you for the opportunity to meet together with the cup of coffee. I believe that when there are more meetings like this, employees will be more courageous in talking together. It was new for all of us, but in a very positive way.”
And we want to thank you very much for your ideas and openness, and we look forward to seeing you in the next department.