The striking sales campaign poster with the colourful writing catches Sandy Wilke’s eye. From there she looks across to the long checkout queue that has formed ahead of her. She only has a few small items in her own basket today, but many others are doing their large weekly shop this Saturday. The poster promises “DIY Discounts”. Anybody who has a coupon on hand can attach it to a product of their choice and benefit from the individual discount. To make sure that customers always obtain their coupons in good time, Sandy Wilke occasionally stops time.
Having joined the company as a trainee, Sandy Wilke has now been with Mohn Media for over 12 years. She shuttles between desk and print shop, makes customer calls and organises the workflows from order to flyer delivery. Frequently, everything needs to be done incredibly fast, but she remembers to have a laugh with her colleagues every now and again. Working elsewhere has never occurred to Sandy Wilke. Although it initially took some time to find her way around the convoluted paths on the extensive premises, her own path at Mohn Media has always been straightforward.
A special bestseller
Today, Sandy Wilke marches purposefully through the huge print shop and greets her colleagues at the end of the web offset machine. Her ears are ringing from the familiar rattling. This is where the next major order will be printed in a few days’ time: advertising flyers for a supermarket chain, a print run of 5 million. Everything is perfectly scheduled. First the layout will be agreed, then the printing will be done, and the following week the flyers will arrive in customers’ letterboxes. 5 million copies – that’s the same number as the copies of “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone” sold in the first eight years. The key difference between the two publications: flyers are not sold; their purpose is to sell. A discount coupon can act as a popular “magic trick” to this end.
Flexibility and spontaneity are the most important things in our job. We surprise ourselves sometimes when we manage to fulfil large print orders despite tight deadlines.
“Sandy, it’s time for some teamwork again,” announces Viktoria Görzen, who sits across from Sandy Wilke. She has just received an email alerting her to a special challenge: The customer who placed the order for the special print job would now like to add some extra coupons to the flyers. The fact that the two of them have been working hand-in-hand for years is now paying off. Not only privately in the ladies’ football team but also at Mohn Media. To master the additional task in time, fast and flexible action is required. The best thing would be to stop time, as Harry Potter’s friend Hermione Granger manages to do with her magic timepiece. Sometimes it seems truly miraculous the way the two colleagues manage to meet the print deadline despite the high volume and the narrow time window.
Sandy Wilke rushes to the shelf where all the project data is assembled and coordinates the next steps with Viktoria Görzen. While Sandy is still speaking to the purchasing staff about the paper and to the print shop planners to determine the new print schedule, Viktoria sorts out the new schedule for dispatching the flyers. The plan can only come together if everything is coordinated perfectly. Of course it is understood that all this must not jeopardise the high quality standards. Step by step, hour by hour, the two customer managers are getting closer to the print deadline.
Our work is a race against time. So it’s brilliant that we’re a well-attuned team – both at work and privately.
Sandy Wilke hears a little voice asking “Mum, can I have some sweets, please?” But the young mother ahead of her in the queue shakes her head. “That’s too much money this time. And I left my discount coupons at home.” Once again, Sandy Wilke is quick to act and reaches decisively into her handbag. She offers the coupons that she found in her own mail yesterday to the woman. After a quick look at the paper – the colour quality has come out perfectly once again – the sought-after coupons are promptly attached to some products in the trolley. “Go on then, get yourself some sweets, we’ve been able to save some money now after all,” laughs the mother and winks at Sandy Wilke. Should there be an award for an especially huge print run similar to the award for a bestseller like the one received by the Harry Potter author? That would be great. But for now, Sandy Wilke is happy with seeing a little girl’s shining eyes.
Flyers printed at Mohn Media per week: over 75 million
Ultra-modern offset presses for printing flyers: 7
Sandy Wilke’s experience at Mohn Media: 12 years
Sandy Wilke and Viktoria Görzen working together: 3 years
Copies of “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone” sold to date: 100 million
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