Everything you need to get your business running safely
International Women's Day: Celebrating Women in Print

International Women's Day: Celebrating Women in Print

Read Time: 10 Minutes

instantprint

06 Mar 2020

This International Women’s Day, we’re celebrating the achievements of some of the fantastic women behind the print at instantprint. As well as getting a snapshot into what it’s like working in the print industry as a woman, we also wanted to know what inspired the women in our team to give it their all each and every day! Here’s what they had to say… 

 

Amy the artwork support coordinator at instantprint with a quote about working as a woman in print

 

Who are you and what do you do? 

My name is Amy, and I am the Artwork Support Coordinator here at instantprint. 

 

What’s been your biggest achievement of the year so far? 

I believe that I have become more self-confident in my role and although it has taken a while, I now accept that people do look to me for advice and guidance and see me as a leader. I look forward to see where the role takes me and my team and how we can grow to make our service even better than it already is! 

 

What advice would you give to women looking to get into the print industry? 

Don’t let ideas of what you think people are looking for hold you back. Be yourself, let your personality show, who knows where it will take you! 

 

Have there been any obstacles to your career because of your gender, and if so, how did you overcome them? 

I would say no. I believe that you create your own obstacles. In this day and age, nothing should hold you back because you are a woman. Everyone should be treated as a person rather than categorised by a gender. Is there any such thing as a ‘man’s job?’ No! 

A quote saying is there such think as a man's job? no!

Why did you choose a career in the print industry? 

I have always been a creative person and have always been fascinated by the processes of print. I love to see the artwork created by our customer’s which I get to do every day. The thing I have been waiting for which is now here (almost – can’t give it away just yet, but keep your eyes peeled on the website!). It is an understatement to say I am excited! 

 

Who’s your biggest female role model? 

That is a very hard question as there are so many women around me who are inspirational. I try to surround myself with these people both in my personal life and in the media that I consume to better myself and hopefully to inspire others. 

She is fictional but a role model all the same: Wonder Womaaaaaan! She is a very powerful, attractive, independent woman who doesn’t let her status affect her. She is very caring and will do anything to help anyone around her. She will stand up for what is right and make her voice heard.

 

What woman in your life is bossing it in their career right now? 

In my current role, my Team Leader Jasmin, Alice, the CX Manager, Jess the Studio Team Leader and Leanne the Studio Manager inspire me on a daily basis. All different levels in the business, and all great at what they do!

 

What changes (if any) do you believe are needed in the print industry to make it more attractive to women? 

As I said before, I don’t believe there is such thing as a ‘man’s job’ so if you want to go down a certain career path, get going! 

 

 

Vicki the head of team experience at instantprint with a quote about gender and print

 

Who are you and what do you do?

I’m Vicki, Head of Team Experience. My role is to develop our all-important Team Experience strategy which covers everything from training, development, recruitment, engagement and team culture.


What’s been your biggest achievement of the year so far?

Without a doubt, it’s helping others to develop. There’s no greater sense of achievement than contributing to someone’s personal development and watching that person flourish. 


What advice would you give to women looking to get into the print industry?

Like any other manufacturing industry, print may seem like a daunting industry to get into, but there are so many career opportunities and paths within print which I never imagined were possible until I joined the sector; opportunities in web development, training, compliance, project management or HR!

 

Have there been any obstacles to your career because of your gender, and if so, how did you overcome them?

Regardless of gender I think we all have our own battles, whether it be something like self-doubt or a lack of confidence in a certain area. The key is to recognise these personal obstacles and tackle them head on rather than shy away from them.

 

Why did you choose a career in the print industry?

I’d be lying if I said that I chose a career within print; instead I chose a career with a company that I could see was going places, and one that I could grow with. That was eight years ago and now I couldn’t see myself working anywhere other than in print!

 

Who’s your biggest female role model?

It has to be my mum, Denise. My mum has had a massive influence on my personality and outlook on life. She’s made me strive to be independent, find my voice in the world and, most importantly, see the lighter side of life! Eighteen months ago, she battled a very serious illness and I have been so inspired with how strong she is.

 

What woman in your life is bossing it in their career right now?

I work with so many women who bring their A-game every single day! I’m also incredibly proud of the women within this business who have developed into leadership roles or those who are in what might be considered as traditional ‘male’ positions. These are great role models for the younger women and men joining our business today – our leaders of the future.
 

 

Joanna from the sample pack team at instantprint with a quote on working in print as a woman

 

Who are you and what do you do?

I’m Joanna and I work in the Sample Pack team at instantprint. Our sample packs show off how fantastic our print quality is, and we take a lot of care to make sure the packing and delivery of these samples is just as high quality. I am also a proud working mother!


What’s been your biggest achievement of the year so far?

This year, I have been promoted to a new role (Senior Operative) in my workplace. Being given the chance to progress is one of the reasons I love what I do.

 

What advice would you give to women looking to get into the print industry?

I’d give the same advice to anyone, no matter their gender: be positive, professional, hard-working, and you can achieve everything that you want.


Have there been any obstacles to your career because of your gender, and if so, how did you overcome them?

I’m a very positive person, so obstacles don’t phase me. I actually believe I have the ability to turn any obstacle in my favour, regardless of my gender!

 

Why did you choose a career in the print industry?

I love a challenge, and saw the print industry as a fantastic way to test and grow my skills. 


Who’s your biggest female role model?

I’m surrounded by various women in my life who inspire me, especially those who keep working hard and never give up, no matter where they are or what they’re going through in their personal lives.

 

What woman in your life is bossing it in their career right now?

 I think all the women who I work with are bossing it! I see my team make big and small achievements to help move the company, and their professional development, forward. 


What changes (if any) do you believe are needed in the print industry to make it more attractive to women?

As I’ve already mentioned, I’ve faced very few barriers as a working mum in the print industry, and instantprint offers an enhanced maternity and paternity package as a benefit. But I’d love to see more changes in the print industry, and in businesses across the UK as a whole, like free childcare for working mothers and more workplace creches or nurseries.

 

Leanne Head of instantprint Studio team with a quote for international women's day

 

Who are you and what do you do?

My name is Leanne, and I’m Head of Studio at instantprint. We check all of our customers’ artwork before it goes to print to make sure it will print perfectly.


What’s been your biggest achievement of the year so far?

Can I be cheeky and go back to December?

We did a presentation to the board of directors about what we had achieved since starting leadership and management training. I was so nervous but I received some amazing feedback for the things I’d put in place. Afterwards, I felt so proud and really valued by the company.

 

What advice would you give to women looking to get into the print industry?

Stay curious and ask questions, there’s always something new in print so don’t assume you know everything!

 

Have there been any obstacles to your career because of your gender, and if so, how did you overcome them?

I definitely had my own doubts being a female manager. I thought I had to be confident, know all the answers and not show any emotion. But actually, instantprint taught me that showing vulnerability isn’t a weakness; it can be a really good way to connect with people. 

 

 

Why did you choose a career in the print industry?

I studied Graphic Design but I loved seeing my work as a physical print for the first time. I couldn’t imagine working in any other industry now, there’s so much to learn and the future in print is so exciting.


 
Who’s your biggest female role model?

I know it’s cliché but my Mum! She’s so calm and level headed. If I had a problem, she would tell me to think of it from another person’s perspective. It’s advice I use in my role almost every day.

 

What woman in your life is bossing it in their career right now?

My friend Kirsty! She started in my team but followed her dream to become a graphic designer for instantprint. Her work ethic inspires me – she is so determined, and even learns skills in her spare time to help with her role!

 

quote that says we need to raise awareness that there are no gender restrictions in print

 

What changes (if any) do you believe are needed in the print industry to make it more attractive to women?

We need to raise awareness that there are no gender restrictions in print. There are a lot of transferable skills needed, especially patience, communication and a keen eye for detail – it’s not all about lifting heavy stacks of paper and getting covered in ink!

 

Jennie the creative lead at instantprint with a quote about working in a male dominated environment

 

Who are you and what do you do?

I’m Jennie, the Creative Lead for instantprint. This means that I’m responsible for the look and feel of the brand through anything designed. The creative team I lead works closely with the marketing team to support all of the channels in which our customers interact with us through.

 

What’s been your biggest achievement of the year so far?

Part of my role is to improve the user’s print journey. As part of this, I have implemented a change in how our customers select their print options to improve the experience for them. 

 

What advice would you give to women looking to get into the print industry?

Don’t be afraid. It’s becoming more and more normal to see women in more ‘male-dominated industries’.

 

Have there been any obstacles to your career because of your gender, and if so, how did you overcome them?

Whilst at university, I was told as part of a seminar that the graphic design industry is very male orientated so being a woman would work in our favour. At the time I thought, great news, I’ll get a job easier, but on reflection now it’s quite sad to be told that as a young designer. I hope that every job has considered me purely on my skills rather than my gender.

 

Why did you choose a career in the print industry?

The print industry has always interested me. I actually printed my business cards with instantprint for my degree show back in 2013 and realised they were based not too far away from my hometown. I followed them on Instagram and the rest is history!

 

Who’s your biggest female role model?

The women that I’m surrounded by on a day to day basis – this includes my family, friends and colleagues. If you surround yourself with positive influences it not only helps you but helps you help other people.


What woman in your life is bossing it in their career right now?

(Jess, our copywriter, is going to proofread this and laugh but…) my girls in the team are smashing it right now! At the minute we’re embracing the girl power vibes as we’re currently an all-girl team producing some amazing work. I can’t wait to see what 2020 has in store for our team!

 

What changes (if any) do you believe are needed in the print industry to make it more attractive to women?

Print can be such an important part of small businesses; I don’t think the print industry need to change anything apart from getting away from the idea that print is dead.
 

 

Lucy business development manager at instantprint with a quote about supporting female colleagues

 

Who are you and what do you do?

I’m Lucy and I work as a Business Development Manager on the instantprint Account Management team. This involves leading a team to help businesses who need more print options than what’s offered on the instantprint website, like higher quantities and bespoke orders.

 

What’s been your biggest achievement of the year so far?

I recently bought a house, which I couldn’t have done without working hard and excelling at what I do.  

 

What advice would you give to women looking to get into the print industry?

The same advice I would give to a man! Work hard, keep your head down and do your job. I think there can be a misconception that you don’t know as much as your male colleagues, so just make sure you know your stuff and if you don’t – don’t be afraid to ask and learn.

 

Have there been any obstacles to your career because of your gender, and if so, how did you overcome them?

I haven’t really come across any, mainly I think because of how inclusive instantprint is. As the only female Business Development Manager in my brand, I feel supported by my male colleagues, and totally equal. 

 

Why did you choose a career in the print industry?

It was more the company than the industry in all honesty, I had read about the values of the company and plans for growth, and wanted to be a part of that!


Who’s your biggest female role model?

Chrissy Teigen. She uses her platform to speak about important issues for women (fertility, sexism, body positivity, depression). She isn’t scared to laugh at herself and doesn’t take herself seriously. She shuts down trolls with sass and humour – I love her!  

 

What woman in your life is bossing it in their career right now?

All my girls. They all do different jobs, from teaching, accounting, to being a mum, but they boss it all day, every day!  

 

What changes (if any) do you believe are needed in the print industry to make it more attractive to women?

I think just a stronger support network for women. I do think print and sales can sometimes be considered a man’s game, so just be as supportive as you can to your female colleagues. Build each other up and shout about each other’s achievements.

 

 

Becky project manager with a quote about being a woman in the print industry

 

Who are you and what do you do?

I’m Becky – Project Manager. My main responsibility centres on operational projects throughout the business – which in a nutshell means I help get machinery and processes into the business that deliver our promise of being a customer-centric, fast-turnaround printer.


What’s been your biggest achievement of the year so far?

Becoming a Project Manager! At the back end of 2019, an opportunity came up within the business to become a project manager as part of our core team in the business. 

Having worked in marketing for 8 years, I was a little apprehensive to make the leap from commercial to operations – and scared I wouldn’t be considered given I’d lacked experience as a project manager. 2 months in, and I’m loving the change. I’m back to learning a ton of information and trying to get my head around the complexities of the company that makes us a UK leading printer. 

All I can say is I’m feeling very lucky to be exposed to this side of the business because I get to work with so many talented and clever individuals that make instantprint amazing.

 

What advice would you give to women looking to get into the print industry?

At instantprint, there aren’t really any barriers regardless of gender, age or even skill set. I think my shift from marketing into operations is a gleaming example of this. My only advice to anyone would be to show your passion and enthusiasm in all that you do!


Have there been any obstacles to your career because of your gender, and if so, how did you overcome them?

I wouldn’t say I’ve had any obstacles. I’ve had a handful of questionable comments from old school traditionalists throughout my working life. When I was younger, I’d say I’ve ignored them, but as I’ve matured, I generally call people out. 

 

Why did you choose a career in the print industry?

I pretty much fell into it! I’d worked down south within the toy and hotel industry for 5 years. A relocation back to Yorkshire ignited a search for a new career, and I was very lucky to fall into instantprint – a forward-thinking brand with an amazing culture. 


Who’s your biggest female role model?

I’d probably say my mum. She’d been a carer all her life before suffering a stroke at the young age of 50. This limited her ability to be a carer and she was redeployed into an admin role. Baring in mind my mum had never turned a computer on before, she went through years of training to learn the basics of typing, Microsoft skills workshops and lots more. She’s totally thriving now, and she wouldn’t have achieved as much as she did without her determination.

 

What woman in your life is bossing it in their career right now?

An old friend in my life who’s always had a hunger for the fashion industry since school. Having doing some pretty tough internship work (for free) and getting her degree and masters – she’s now working on her doctorate which is all around making fashion more sustainable with a plant-based replacement to leather. Pretty crazy stuff, but something she’s working so hard on. I can’t wait to see what she creates!

 

What changes (if any) do you believe are needed in the print industry to make it more attractive to women?

I wouldn’t say there’s a barrier for women in the print industry. But I do believe there’s a misconception that print workers are a dying breed. Print has changed an exceptional amount over the past 50 years with the growth of digital print technologies. instantprint is a shining example of the next generation of print – we’re a young workforce compared to traditional print shops and we have big teams of people you wouldn’t have seen years ago like; web development, business analysts, database managers and digital workflow managers. 

 

 

Jasmin senior team leader at instantprint with a quote about the changes for women in the print industry

 

Who are you and what do you do?

My name is Jasmin and I’m a Senior Team Lead within our Customer Service department, leading our Artwork Support and Live Chat teams, which offer support through a number of channels including email, telephone, chat and a little social media.


What’s been your biggest achievement of the year so far?

The highlight of my year so far is when two of my team members were shortlisted for awards. Nathan from our Chat team was shortlisted for Agent of the Year and Shannon from Artwork Support was shortlisted for a Special Moment award – they’re absolute winners in my eyes!


What advice would you give to women looking to get into the print industry?

The print industry is forever changing, so don’t be afraid to get your voice heard and contribute to the changes that are happening. 


Have there been any obstacles to your career because of your gender, and if so, how did you overcome them?

I’ve been lucky enough to work within a team where gender doesn’t get in the way of opportunity or progression! 


Why did you choose a career in the print industry?

Print definitely isn’t in decline; it’s such a booming industry that’s creative and progressive. This is what’s kept me within the print industry for almost 5 years now – I’ve been able to contribute my ideas, and help develop the processes and amazing people that make up our fantastic customer service team today.  


Who’s your biggest female role model?

Lizzo because she makes me feel “Good as Hell!” – She’s the complete embodiment of self-empowerment and body confidence, I love her. 


What woman in your life is bossing it in their career right now?

Without a doubt this is Alice, our Customer Experience Manager, she inspires me, motivates me and encourages me to push boundaries daily! She’s absolutely smashing her career and has helped us create a world-class customer experience.


What changes (if any) do you believe are needed in the print industry to make it more attractive to women?

I feel as though changes are already happening, from exhibitions based on women in print to print future awards that encourage young people within the print industry to invest in their print careers.  

 

 

instantprint brand manager laura with a quote about getting to grips with printing terminology

 

Who are you and what do you do?

I’m Laura and I’m the Brand Manager for instantprint. I head up the Marketing, Creative, Web & Product Development teams for the brand. It’s our job to make sure small businesses have everything they need to order promotional print and look awesome. 


What’s been your biggest achievement of the year so far?

There’s been a lot of changes at instantprint HQ as we’re growing really quickly. Keeping the team on track, motivated and eager for the next challenge has been the best part of 2020 so far.


What advice would you give to women looking to get into the print industry?

Don’t be afraid to ask questions and jump onto the learning curve. Print is like any other industry where everyone has to start somewhere. The lingo will come as you get stuck in – so don’t be disheartened if you don’t know your litho from your digital on day one. There’s constantly new technology being developed, so even the most experienced member of the print industry will have something new to learn every day. 

 

quote saying instantprint is quick to recognise talent whatever gender


Have there been any obstacles to your career because of your gender, and if so, how did you overcome them?

I’ve not felt any obstacles because of my gender. instantprint isn’t as male dominated as what people may perceive of the print industry. There might be more of a male weighting to the more experienced team members in our production facility, however I believe it’s more of a generational thing and instantprint is quick to recognise talent whatever gender. 

There is a male dominance at a board level, but this isn’t unique to print and is common across all industries. Women need to be confident that times are changing and board rooms are getting more and more women inside. Women need to be confident that they are capable at all levels of management, and the print industry is recognising that. 


Why did you choose a career in the print industry?

I love how fast paced it is at instantprint and how quickly the business is growing. For an industry many people think is “dead” – we’re certainly proving otherwise and it’s an exciting place to be. 


Who’s your biggest female role model?

Serena Williams is incredible. She’s the most successful tennis player of all time, has a family, has a sense of humour, and she isn’t afraid to make mistakes and let out her fiery side. She’s also massively involved in getting other younger girls to get active and play tennis too. Someone who is as dedicated and passionate at anything should be looked up to. 

 

What woman in your life is bossing it in their career right now?

One of my closest friends has landed a job at global Environmental Consultancy helping large corporations and the government make smart environmental decisions when developing new structures. As someone who has known how obsessed with the ocean and nature she has been since we were 5 years old, seeing her take this passion through university and now be able to do this in her day to day over 20 years later is amazing.  


What changes (if any) do you believe are needed in the print industry to make it more attractive to women?

It is down to individual companies to give women the confidence that they will be supported and not discriminated against. Offering flexi-time for parents as standard is one way the industry can attract more women, along with good maternity packages. Private companies across all industries have to compete with the benefits offered within the Public sector. 


 

Jessica Lindley

About the Author

Hi, I’m Jessica and I’m instantprint’s Content Executive. I enjoy writing content to help small businesses succeed and inspire them to get creative with their print marketing.