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President's Post - June


As I am sitting at my desk writing this, I understand that this will be published during our upcoming conference in Napier, on 13-14 June. I am looking forward to this year’s conference as the town of Napier is a special place for me. It is where my parents and one sister live, where my signwriting journey started, and now (due to spending most of my time in Wellington) the weather in Napier is generally very good. I hope I have not put a commentator’s curse on our few days there now.

The numbers for conference this year are a little bit lower than previous years, but there was a large amount of interest just before the closing date, ensuring a fantastic event. I know that trading, and trying to squeeze a bit of profit out of the market has been a bit harder over the last 6 – 12 months. I cannot encourage every sign shop owner, manager, senior staff, team members, apprentices enough to make the effort and investment to attend these events. It is the best opportunity to meet other people in exactly the same situation as you.

We have a great program this conference to meet and question some industry leaders, people that have been there, done that, dealt with this etc. They have expressed an interest in offering their experiences to others. I am particularly looking forward to this. We are touring a collection of old signs (which is going to be awesome for us sign geeks), there are great speakers arranged, and we have the very important social networking during meals out and about, where you get to meet other people that have lots of things in common with you.

Those that have not been able to make it this this event, please put a note in your diaries when the dates for next year’s event are announced. I would really love to see the numbers increase. The more people that attend, the better the experiences for everyone, and for our industry.

At the end of conference is the NZSDA Awards of Excellence evening. This is the night to dress up a bit, enjoy a delicious meal, wines, beers of which Hawkes Bay excels in, have fun, and see the award-winning entries that showcase the exceptional talents of people in our industry here in New Zealand. While the evening is a hell of a lot of fun, if you have put in an entry, you may even leave with a well sort after and rare award.

I was one of three judges for this event, and it was one of the most challenging and rewarding experiences that I have ever had in this industry. The quality of the work is just outstanding, and it was very hard to make final decisions on some entries. I am looking forward to seeing the winners’ reactions when their names are announced, that is always a huge highlight.

This year, I particularly enjoyed looking through the ‘self-promotion’ and ‘works by an apprentice’ categories. Clearly our industry is going to be the best-looking industry. The caliber of people completing their apprenticeships, and their quality of work, shows that our industry is in such a strong position, and will only get better. An industry I am very proud to be a part of.

I look forward to meeting many of you in (hopefully sunny) Napier soon, and those that cannot make it, please make the effort to join us in 2025. It is worth it.

Until next time,

Kind regards,

Shae Goom
Wise Studios

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