In 1989, mother-and-daughter Phyllis Lynch and Dawn Little teamed up as the owners and operators of their Minuteman Press franchise in Florence, Kentucky. Located at 7830 Hwy 42, Minuteman Press continues to proudly serve their clients with design, marketing, and printing products and services that remain in high demand.
For Phyllis and Dawn, owning a business together for thirty years means they must be doing something right. Phyllis jokes, “We both opened the doors of our new project together. Thirty years, and believe it or not, we are still speaking to one another.”
Of course, it is the people behind the business that make it successful and having the doors open for three decades speaks to their customer service and product capabilities as well as the stability of Minuteman Press and printing as a whole. Dawn says, “Being in business for thirty years shows customers we are dependable, reliable, and trustworthy. They drive by our shop every day and see that we are open. When they come in, they see the press going and phones ringing. It gives people a sense that the shop is always busy, and lets them know that we will be there to help them down the road.
“We have seen many businesses come and go in our strip mall, but our customers have seen us here throughout the years, and they know we are here to stay.”
The wide variety of clients that Phyllis and Dawn gladly serve include local schools, manufacturing plants, restaurants, government offices, non-profit groups, sports teams, and many more. Dawn says, “You never know who is going to come through these doors and we personally feel that no job is too big or too small for us to handle.”
Working in the community and making a positive difference is important for any business, and Minuteman Press is no exception. Dawn explains, “Community service is huge. People like to see that your business is trying to help out. We have participated in local holiday events, give two scholarships to local schools, and make our share of donations. If it wasn’t for the community, we wouldn’t be here so we like to give back. I am a Board member in the Grant County Chamber of Commerce and my mom is involved in BNI, New Perceptions, and Give Where You Live.”
Why Minuteman Press? Dawn explains, “I was a secretary in Norfolk, Virginia, and my husband was in the Navy. My mom called me up just as my husband’s term was up and said to me, ‘I have a great idea.’ Mom chose Minuteman Press because she was an office supply representative and she had asked around about getting into her own business. She liked printing because it was compatible with her background. Luckily, there was a Minuteman Press for sale.”
Phyllis adds, “We knew nothing about the printing industry. But my husband and I both wanted to invest in a business. When a local business owner told us about the printing industry, Michael decided to check a few shops out. We came across Minuteman Press as one of the first shops we saw. Sometimes when you are mining for gold, you actually find uranium. From there, we met our Regional Vice President Gary Nowak and he explained the industry and the advantages of going with a proven franchise. We especially liked the fact that they had (and still have) a cap on royalties.”
As part of the Minuteman Press franchise family, Phyllis and Dawn have the freedom to run their business independently while also receive ongoing support that has helped them through the years. Dawn says, “The support we get from Minuteman Press is helpful. We learn plenty at their World Expo conventions, and having Minuteman Press behind us gives us better pricing. Gary Nowak and the local team as well as the corporate office are very supportive whenever we need them.”
Rewards of Owning a Business
The most rewarding aspects of owning a business hit close to home for Dawn and Phyllis. Dawn says, “There are multiple rewards in this business. I have been given the chance to work with my mom for thirty years, which is as rewarding as it gets. The chance to be with her daily and work beside her is priceless. The friendships that you make with your customers is another reward. I love to joke and have fun with them. It makes my job fun and their experience here more personal and positive.”
Phyllis echoes Dawn’s sentiment, saying, “Working with my daughter every day is the real plus of my ownership and knowing that she is more than ready to pass on our legacy is also important. She is really fantastic with the customers and always ready to learn and embrace newer technology.”
Dawn adds, “And when you see that customer is having a rough day, your shoulder is sometimes needed to help them through. When my son was younger, I was able to leave the shop and support him at his football games. Working for anyone else wouldn’t have allowed me to easily be there for him like that.”
Being in business for thirty years also means that the business has adapted over time. Dawn says, “Technology has changed tremendously since we first opened. More is done digitally with the Internet and computers than when we started. The fact that our graphic designer can create brilliant designs on her Mac and things can be done so quickly is incredible. We used to have a typesetter that would take two days to get proofs back to us, and today we can do what we need to do much more rapidly.
“The business is at a much faster pace, and Minuteman Press is great at meeting that fast demand while retaining quality and service.”
Advice for Others
As Dawn Little explains, “There is no secret to this business. I treat people the same way I would want to be treated. Personable customer service will bring you repeat business. If you make a promise that the job will be done on time, keep the promise! If you don’t, customer will find someone else.”
Phyllis chimes in with her own words of advice: “For new owners, there is a reason you invested in a franchise. It is already a proven tactic and method. Do not try to recreate the wheel.
“Also, never judge a book by its cover. In our first week, a gentleman came in and ordered a sizeable order. He gave me a check for [50 percent] down. I could not wait until he left so I could go downstairs and ask the bank if the check was any good. When I did, the teller, laughing hysterically, told me that ‘yes’ it was good. That gentleman owned the bank and the building we were leasing!”
Dawn concludes, “Laugh with your customers and treat them with the respect they deserve. Word of mouth can make or break you! Once you have a dependable staff, keep them! We have had our pressman for twelve years and our graphic designer for sixteen, and our shop runs so smoothly. They are an asset to our success and knowing that I can count on them makes the office run as it should.”
For more information, call them at (859) 371-0191 or visit https://www.florence.minutemanpress.com.