FESPA UK announce the continuation of The Next Generation project in 2024.

After a busy year working hard to support our Next Generation, FESPA UK will be starting 2024 off with a large event taking place on the 21st of February at Coventry Transport Museum.


FESPA UK’s Next Generation project has been so well-received and successful in achieving its goals. Projects like these often play a crucial role in fostering innovation, collaboration, and the development of new talent within the industry.

The initiative started in January 2023 with two training days at Amari which looked at different vinyl materials and their applications as well as getting hands on and having a go vinyl wrapping. This was followed by a large event held at The British Motor Museum in Warwick which looked at different styles of networking and how they can be achieved, as well as an inspiring workshop from The Apprentice Winner Mark Wright who talked about progressing within career roles and building a strong skillset, attended by over 45 young people within the industry.

Throughout the remainder of the year FESPA UK organised 3 more localised events, including a workshop on social media and marketing in the print industry, as well as getting hands on with the latest printer technology, held at Liyu UK, a talk panel involving the Next Generation Committee on getting more young talent into the industry, held at The Print Show and a day going head to head in teams, overseeing the design and production, build and sale of desk organisers, held at Zund UK. Throughout 2023 FESPA UK Next Generation events have welcomed over 100, 18-30’s within the print, graphics, and signage industry, allowing them to elevate their skills and network, ready for the future.

FESPA UK plan to go bigger and better in 2024, starting with a large-scale event being held at Coventry Transport Museum on the 21st of February 2024. This event will welcome 18-30’s of all areas of print, signage and graphics and offer key take away skills from workshops focusing on building sales and communication skills. Alistaire Jama, Managing Director of Kennedy Ross will be providing close knit workshops on February the 21st along with his team.

The workshops will be in small groups and give FESPA UK delegates key insights and offer upskilling on sales and communication in two modules: “ ‘Ensuring your Words, Music and Dance are aligned so your sales message lands correctly every time’, and ‘How to get on well with everyone you meet within the first 7 seconds’– Psychometric profiling.

Both modules, will increase confidence in communicating clearly and help to build relationships quickly. All of which is based around the premise ‘people buy from people they like’. The workshop is designed for anyone who is customer facing, has challenges around communication, finds certain types of people difficult to sell to, wants to increase the quality and quantity of their conversations. This workshop works just as well in helping you manage your internal customers (people throughout your business) as well as external customers. It will remove your bias and finally explain why you like and dislike certain people when communicating and create a plan to ensure you maximise on every opportunity.”


The rest of the year will offer training days in smaller groups, in various locations up and down the UK to allow accessibility for everyone no matter their location. The training days will focus on a range of topics, including:
– Positive mental health
– Workflow
– Customer Service
– Technology and innovation
– Marketing
– Sustainability

These events will be focused on educating young people, and then 2-3 of the localised events will see a new concept for 2024 where the business owners can join their young team members and will be able to learn together and discuss key topics that effect the daily running of a business.

Focusing on educating young people and facilitating a “Learning Together” concept in which business owners can join their young team members to discuss key topics is a brilliant way to foster collaboration, mentorship, and knowledge exchange. Bringing different generations within a business together for shared learning can be mutually beneficial. It allows experienced business owners to share their insights gained over years of experience, while younger team members can bring fresh perspectives and ideas, contributing to a more dynamic and innovative work environment.

As a result of funds raised from FESPA UK’s events and the help and input the 2023 supporters HP, All Print Supplies, Compass Business Finance and Vivid Laminating Technologies, FESPA UK have been able to contribute for 3 members of the Next Generation committee to attend FESPA Global Print Expo, Amsterdam in 2024, as ambassadors for the young people they are helping to support with the project. This opportunity will allow them to network with the Global FESPA community, gain insights from around the world, develop their networking skills and will help to create content for marketing and social media that will be used to promote the industry to others who haven’t considered print and signage as a viable career.

Jay Burfield, Membership Development Executive, and Chair of the Next Generation Committee at FESPA UK commented: “We have been blown away by the support and recognition that The Next Generation Project has received within the very first year of being up and running, but we are keen to press on into the future and support as many 18-30’s within the industry as possible.”

Sarah Lee’s, Head of Communications from Compass Business Finance commented: “Attracting, supporting, and retaining young talent within the industry is vital, not only for the future but also for today. Having a diverse industry, in all respects, increases the strength, resilience and creativity, of the industry enabling it to offer even better products to businesses throughout the UK, and further afield. Compass enjoy being part of this initiative because of its belief in building a stronger industry – we know that many successful businesses have been started by people within this age range, including our own. It’s exciting to meet and encourage members of the Next Generation Network, to hear their ideas and to learn more about their perspectives. In 2024, we look forward to seeing the network grow and develop further, particularly as it seeks to raise its profile outside of the industry and shine a light on the wide-ranging career opportunities available for younger people.”

More information will be available from FESPA UK on their website here. Alternatively, Jay Burfield can be contacted via email: jay.burfield@fespauk.com or phone 07918407022.

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FESPA UK Association

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