Experience Speaks: Jason Grossman

◆ President of Paragon Label Co.

Motto: Treat customers and employees even better than you expect to be treated. Go the extra mile to make somebody's day better.

  • How did you get into the converting business? I was purchasing manager for Mrs. Grossman's, using an outside printer to produce our stickers. It got to a point where it was more economical to print our own. I started with one press, then purchased four more. After seven years I decided to diversify by printing wine labels. We are surrounded by great wineries requiring high-end labels, so this was a great fit.

  • What is the biggest mistake you made, and how did you fix it? I hired a couple of people who didn't work out and that was a great lesson learned. Now I focus on growing people from within and hiring people with very solid references.

  • How do you retain good employees? It can be difficult to find good employees in this area because we live in a very expensive county. We like to train people and bring them up through the ranks. I am very proud to say that we have very little turnover.

  • What is the biggest threat to the converting industry right now? First is the constant pressure to reduce prices that could seriously undermine and affect quality control and top-of-the-line production capabilities. Second is the amount of manufacturing that is going overseas.

  • Are there any business books that have influenced you? I tend to like books by Peter Drucker. I really enjoyed The Tipping Point. I especially like books about our founding fathers and just about anything on history.

  • What's the best advice you ever got? Some of the best advice has come from Andrea Grossman, an extraordinary businesswoman who just happens to be my mom. She taught me to have very high principles and stick to them, no matter what.

  • What sustainability efforts has your company made? We recycle all of our printing waste (setup and matrix), filter our waste water in our own treatment facility, and have recycling bins for employees and visitors. We've been practicing smart conservation methods long before green became a buzzword, and we've won energy savings awards from Pacific Gas & Electric.

  • Do you have a personal hero? George Washington. He was a man of tremendous courage and conviction. He never let the worst odds get the better of him and sacrificed everything for his beliefs. As our first president, he had almost unlimited power but constantly gave it up because it was in the best interest of his country to do so.

  • How do you spend your spare time? I am an avid outdoors person. My wife and I have a cabin on 40 acres in the Rocky Mountains. To me there's nothing better than taking my ATV up old, forgotten mining roads and ending up at the top of these incredible mountains.

About Paragon Label Co.

◆ 3810 Cypress Dr., Petaluma, CA 94954; 707-773-4363

www.paragonlabel.com

◆ Founded in 1998; 1 plant; 90 employees

Specialty | High quality flexo-printed labels, including hot foil stamping and embossing

Who is your personal hero? Share your perspective. Write to yolanda.simonsis@penton.com.


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