40 YEARS AND COUNTING
FROM FIRED TO BUSINESS OWNER I worked my way up the ladder in corporate America for most of my career, and as I took on more executive and leadership roles, my family and I grew accustomed to my schedule and our lifestyle. But as the saying goes, we make plans, and God laughs.
Steve Recounts His Journey to Purchasing Digital Print Ink
really had to tighten down. We had bills to pay, and I was attempting to run a printing business for the first time. When my new peers in the printing business found out I bought Digital Print Ink, they all asked what I was thinking. Their concern centered on another phenomenon happening during this decade. From 2007 to 2009,
More than 12 years ago, the owner of the company I was an executive with told me they were selling the company. In order to make the business look like a lucrative option, they needed to take me off the payroll.
To make a long story short: I was fired.
the internet was coming of age, which meant we were facing challenges on two fronts: the economic crisis and the digital boom. Both could be killers for a printing business.
It wasn’t how I had envisioned I would leave that job, but I didn’t have a choice. To this business owner’s credit, he was very cordial about the situation, and he became a big part of my next venture. I was given more than a few weeks’ notice about my pending termination, and on
During my early years with DPI, we learned a lot. We focused on customizing what we do and making sure our customers were treated in a way they couldn’t be treated online. We wanted to create products they couldn’t get anywhere else, and we diversified what
the suggestion of my former boss, I began looking into businesses I could buy. That’s when I found Digital Print Ink. I knew nothing about printing and the delicate business it can be, but my former boss encouraged me to take a plunge. With his financial and personal support, I bought Digital Print Ink in May 2007.
we were able to offer. Throughout this time, I used my past business experience and leaned on the experts within our company to help me. In fact, I had a stipulation when purchasing Digital Print Ink that Laurie McCulley, our vice president and production manager, had to stay with the company if I purchased it. She was too valuable of an asset for our company to lose, and she continues to be every day. Still, it was challenging. At the end of the day, our success over the past 12 years has been about solving problems and finding ways we can improve our customer experiences. That’s why we have made our foray into signs. It’s one of the products we’re really focusing on in 2019, and we’re looking forward to seeing the ways it can grow.
“I come in early, stay late, dive into projects with my team, and am passionate about continuing to grow this company. ”
Some people will shudder at the mention of that year. Even
417.881.5309 Even after working for decades in various businesses, I still find myself excited by what we can do with Digital Print Ink. I come in early, stay late, dive into projects with my team, and am passionate about continuing to grow this company. I’m grateful for the opportunity to help this 40-year-old company expand for the past 12 years. I would have never imagined getting fired could lead me here, but I’m sure glad it did. –Steve Counts 1
though the Great Recession wasn’t identified until the fall of 2008, experts have determined it began in April 2007. A month later, I became the owner of a printing company I had paid top dollar for. Needless to say, we were hanging on for dear life in the beginning, and we
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