women's print herstory month girls who print

Name: Melissa Jone

Title: President

Company: Graphic Arts Association

Company URL: www.graphicartsassociation.org

LinkedIn Profile URL:https://www.linkedin.com/in/melissa-jones-26205612/

Please share advice for young women considering or starting a career in print.

My advice would be to learn everything you can about print – the techniques, the equipment, the substrates…everything. This industry is constantly evolving and just when you think you know all there is to know about the impact of print and everything the print industry can do – you quickly realize that there is so much more to learn!

Also, the more you know, the more valuable you are to your employer, your colleagues, and your client. Knowledge is power. Keep being creative, curious, and forward-thinking! Print will always be a valuable medium of communication.

How have mentors helped your personal and career development?

I have been very fortunate to have several mentors throughout my career….some mentors offered to help me and others, I approached, asking for guidance. During my lifetime, my mentors have shaped me to be able to look at situations from a different point of view than my own and have blessed me with the ability to be empathetic to others’ opinions, emotions, etc. even if I did not agree with them.

Being empathetic allows me to remain objective in my decision-making and always open to receiving bits of wisdom from others which, especially for those in a leadership position, is extremely important.

Mentors bring with them not only legacy experience but often alternative ways of viewing situations and circumstances since they bring to the table a totally different set of qualifications & perceptions than you. It’s easy to have tunnel vision regarding an experience when you’re in the moment but if you pause and actually listen to a mentor’s guidance, you may view the experience in a completely different manner and acquire a whole new array of skills that are applicable in your personal and professional life.

Mentors can appear in all forms – young, old, novice, expert – you can learn valuable lessons & skills from everyone you meet. Be open. Listen a lot and speak little – that lesson from my mentors has served me well.

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