Name: Deborah Corn
Title: Principal and Intergalactic Ambassador to The Printerverse
Company: Print Media Centr
LinkedIn Profile:

Did you choose print or did print choose you?  

I started off my career as a sales assistant and knew that wasn’t for me. I moved into the creative services department of a corporation and then into advertising agencies and found a new world of career possibilities through print, but didn’t consider myself part of the print industry. In 2009 when I started Print Media Centr I began to see there was a significant need to help people connect and get information. My perspective of the industry through the eyes of a seasoned print customer helped me to open doors others could not, and provide insight and intel back to the industry from the end-users. It also presented an opportunity for me to help the printers, manufacturers and industry vendors to get the information and feedback they needed, and help them connect and network with each other. ‘Print’ had provided a space for me to occupy, I didn’t seek it out… that is why I believe print most definitely chose me.

How do you establish credibility with customers, colleagues, and bosses? 

I would say that credibility is built upon trust, and to establish trust you have to earn it in every interaction. After you have been working a while hopefully your good reputation proceeds you, early on it is harder to establish but here is some advice… when you have an idea or something to say don’t be afraid to speak up. When possible get support from people with established power and use them to help give YOU credibility until you can stand on your own. Don’t forget this when you move up the ladder, and help those that follow!

What advice can you offer regarding negotiating salary raises/ addressing fair pay issues? 

I was never any good at salary negotiation until I understood and BELIEVED what I was worth. That is power, and power creates options. Fair pay wasn’t a topical issue when I was coming up, but I am now asked about it often from a mentor perspective. My advice is to go into the negotiation KNOWING what the industry salary range is for that position regardless of gender, believe in what you are worth and ask for more than the range, then negotiate from there.

What advice did you receive early in your career that you wished you had followed? 

So much… but listening before speaking is always poignant. Picking your moment to address an issue also comes in handy as well as don’t BURN bridges!!! All of these I still work on… every – single – day!

Happy #PrintHERstorymonth!!!