This week Chris McConnell, my associate in the Mid-America communication department, and I were guests of Pacific Press in Boise, Idaho–the place where Outlook magazine is printed. The purpose of the visit was to familiarize ourselves with the publishing process and discuss how we might optimize it, in terms of maximizing quality, minimizing expense and increasing advertising income.
Chris’s wife, Candice, came along (not at Mid-America Union expense) and contributed her insights to our discussions with Josh Hey, production manager at the Press, and his assistant Donna Dewey. As we toured of the publishing facility, several things impressed me.
First, the obvious spiritual commitment of the Pacific Press workforce, not only the leaders but the production line team. Some of the staff I’ve been privileged to interact with for three decades, as an editor and author.
Besides the spiritual tone at Pacific Press, I was also impressed with the efficiency of its operation. In recent years they have managed to significantly reduce the number of employees, focusing on retirement and attrition. This works because production workers have been trained to perform multiple roles, and the administrative staff has been streamlined as well.
As a result, Pacific Press has been able to operate “in the black” without denominational subsidy–even contributing funds to the church while producing first rate books and publications.
Seventh-day Adventists can be proud of Pacific Press and also emulate its example of missionality and efficiency.
By the way, you might want to keep your eye on the video section of this website; we’ll soon be posting the printing process of Outlook magazine as recorded on our iPhones.