Digital Magazine

Experience Speaks: John Rebecchi

  • Senior Vice President of Disc Graphics Inc.

  • Hobbies | Besides golf and motorcycles, I am nearing completion of my Ph.D. program at Walden Univ.

  • How did you get into the converting business? Started as the controller for the Disc Graphics div. of American Can and was part of the LBO team that acquired the company in 1983. Under the direction of our CEO, Don Sinkin, we made the leap from printing labels to carton converting.

  • How would you describe your management style? Our style is “participative management,” in which we encourage all levels of our company to analyze problems, develop strategies, and implement solutions.

  • How do you retain good employees? We were honored this year as Best of the Best Workplace in America by the Printing Industries of America. The designation speaks volumes on our multifaceted approach, including competitive salary and benefits, a culture of open communications, fostering a learning environment, and a corporate value statement that we follow: Make a positive difference in the lives of others.

  • Do you have a personal motto? Find joy in the little things, and encourage curiosity in yourself and others.

  • What is the key to growing a business in a bad economy? Don't look in the rearview mirror; stay focused on the road ahead. You need to be looking for the next customer and order while having a robust customer service team that handles your current business. Most of all, you need to be innovative and creative without being pushed by the customer.

  • How do you handle a difficult customer? Start by listening carefully. Be factual with your responses, since most difficult customers would rather deal in emotion, and work through the problem. Consider separating yourself from chronically difficult customers. They end up costing the organization too much time and energy.

  • What sustainability efforts have you made? We invested in equipment that minimizes or eliminates the creation of hazardous waste and/or reduces energy consumption; established a recycling program that captures over 98% of all paper waste; developed DISCover Green, our eco-design program for customer packaging; created DISCover Green tree-free paper; and published our eco-resource guide that outlines the ecological efficacy of various materials.

  • What is the biggest threat to the converting industry right now? A declining economy intersecting with printing/converting overcapacity; this will be a death blow to many companies.

  • What is the biggest mistake you made, and how did you fix it? We did not recognize the rapid decline in the music industry, which was our primary market. Now we have become specialists in several niche markets.

About Disc Graphics Inc.

  • 10 Gilpin Ave., Hauppauge, NY 11788; 631-234-1400

  • www.discgraphics.com

  • Founded 1983; 2 plants; 250 employees

  • Specialization | Folding cartons; printing; mini-flute packaging

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