Cheryl Armstrong is a strong woman and business owner. Her client Jon Eddy has stuck with Cheryl’s Minuteman Press franchise throughout his baseball career as well as his entrepreneurial endeavor, JEP.
“I have owned my own business since June 18, 2018, but I have been in the printing industry for more than thirty-four years. I am drawn to the creative side of things and while part of the reason I quit my job for entrepreneurship was the long commute, I was also ready to run things in my own way.” – Cheryl Armstrong, owner, Minuteman Press, Colorado Springs, CO
When Cheryl Armstrong says she’s going to do something, there’s an immediate sense of calm that it will be done. It’s not just because she has a history of keeping her word and being so dedicated to her job as a graphic designer that she commuted one-hundred and five miles away from her home each day, it’s a feeling. Call it a hunch that you’re in the presence of a natural leader in her element, now that she left the workforce and bought Minuteman Press on the south side of Colorado Springs, CO.
Cheryl says, “I have owned my own business since June 18, 2018, but I have been in the printing industry for more than thirty-four years. I am drawn to the creative side of things and while part of the reason I quit my job for entrepreneurship was the long commute, I was also ready to run things in my own way. My way is more efficient (especially when combined with the Minuteman Press franchise system) and it lets me approach every situation with a smile, an attentive ear and the ability to turn questions and problems into finished projects and solutions for the people in our community.”
She was the only designer for a music association in Boulder and drove many miles to give them her talents, followed by 18 years as an employee for a water association headquartered in Denver, where she played a role that foreshadowed her digital print, design and franchise ownership today. “I was a print buyer and the graphic designer, then I returned to print buying for the company before becoming a production editor and I laid out periodicals and books for them. We printed technical manuals and handbooks for the water industry as a national association for American Waterworks in Denver, which was founded around 1870.”
In every position she earned, trust. Great respect was fostered upon her because her ability to get the job done well was always clear as was her inventiveness. “Whether it was computer design or walking into a house and noticing the countless ways presentations can be improved creatively, my mind is always working for new possibilities. I did leave my job because I was tired of the commute, but also because my boss, while a wonderful person, was scattered and I simply did not like being late on projects. It adds too much pressure and being late eats at me. I knew it was not how I wished to continue my career.”
Cheryl also refused to flounder in monotony, sitting all day in front of a computer. As much as she loved design, she began the hunt for new ways to earn a living as her own boss. “I saw this opportunity come up to buy a printing business and I wondered what it would take to actually own a Minuteman Press. Jack Panzer (Regional Vice President) contacted me when I messaged in response to an ad and we talked over a period of weeks, but my family didn’t support my decision to buy a business, so I backed out at the time.”
Fortunately, Jack was persistent because he spent enough time with her to present the possibility that she would be the perfect owner for an existing location that needed fresh, strong, organized leadership. “I decided to go forward and listen to the people from Minuteman Press International who were positive and supported my decision to be my own boss and promised local support. We had a really good beginning, but it was by no means easy. There were a lot of jobs behind when I took over and a lot had been lost or never ordered. By a month in, it seems we are on top of everything and I have had so much support from my Field Representative, Todd Golberg that I am confident going forward.”
“The minute I met Cheryl, I knew that no matter what she chose to do, she would be successful at it. She is hard at work at Minuteman Press in Colorado Springs and as a result I anticipate great things for her and her clients in the future.” – Jack Panzer, Minuteman Press International Regional Vice President, Colorado
Buying an existing franchise can be a fantastic chance to get a jump on a new venture, but it takes the kind of business intelligence and bravery that Cheryl has to take that initial leap. “If it were not for our local support from Minuteman Press with Todd coming in every day as we reorganized the center from top to bottom, we would not have been able to make it. My clients are enthusiastic when we work with them now, happy with how we have transformed our service in a way that is at the heart of my belief, that each of them should be made happy by partnership with us, no matter what it is they need. It was my aim to transform customer service for the better and bring in the positivity everyone deserves while getting things done on time.”
“We are following the Minuteman Press International way and running a cleaner, more efficient and more organized center. I am establishing a culture here that fits what I have always found gratifying, making people happy.” – Cheryl Armstrong
Her staff is in full appreciation for their boss and Cheryl takes good care to make certain they know their voices are heard as they work together to create a strong reputation in the local area. “Sean Vigil worked here prior to my ownership and I retained him because he knows all the equipment and all the current customers know and like him. He always has a smile on his face, a good story and options for them, plus an extensive background in the products and services we provide. Melissa Waples is our new customer service representative and handles all situations calmly, in an organized way and makes sure to follow through with her duties”
Cheryl admits it took her many years to craft management skills that are now prime for employees to feel at home, work hard and help her strengthen her business. True to the spirit of the best Minuteman Press franchise owners, she shows the desire to be a mentor. “I like to help people, but in the past, my expectations of my staff were too high, leaving me frustrated many times. I don’t work that way anymore and I realize that we are all human, have families, and sometimes a job is just a job. I want my employees today to see their positions here as a career path. I really enjoy our new team.”
She is not a new player in the print arena and she applies years of skills developed from her career in printing to her marketing services center today. “My first experience with the printing industry was in college, in Denver, back in 1984. I had a job collating paper and my Japanese boss taught us her own tradition’s method for working quickly, efficiently and accurately. Simply, I learned the faster way of doing things from my time with her. From there, I moved into proofreading as I was noticing a lot of typos all the time, so the typesetting department wanted me. In time, they taught me how to set up business cards, forms and I worked my way up to supervising in a printing company not far from campus.”
Cheryl feels happy herself when she produces final products and they are received with relief, delight and appreciation. “When the customer is clearly happy with the final product, it is a personal victory. I have always been a people-pleaser, so if they are happy, I am happy, too. This has been true since I was a kid, but now I am older, wiser and in the business of making people happy for reasons that contribute to growth.” While it has been said business and personal lives should be separate, it seems she blends them with a winning effect, adding, “Being a business owner is very personal. While this is all new to me, I have the perspective that business is what you make it and I make it personal.”
JEP is a marketing firm, event Management Company and a production company all rolled into one. They are building business together with Minuteman Press in Colorado Springs.
JEP works on “creative and fun ways to make business exciting for both the consumer and the local businesses”. Cheryl and her staff make certain plenty of options are at their service, beginning with flyers and the perfect promotional items for each event. Cheryl recalls a time when her staff came through with a save at the last moment, “Jon was on his way from one venue to another and, en route, he called our shop because he forgot tent cards for the second event. He was in his car and sent the art from his phone and by the time Jon arrived here, 500 tent cards were printed, and scored, and cut to size.”
On a personal note, she adds, “Jon is as tall! And, he is professional and friendly. His work is usually rush jobs and he doesn’t mind waiting if isn’t finished when he arrives to pick it up. I do enjoy talking to him about his different venues he is working on.”
Jon Eddy already knew that Minuteman Press was to be trusted when he needed to promote his business, even before he owned his own production company. When he was playing baseball for The Colorado Sky Sox, he recalls how the team scored the best design and printing. “We used Minuteman Press and they were always reliable and they did an excellent job. I remember useful things were printed for our team like pocket schedules and entry forms. We were able to order items to help our fans have a better time and want to come back to our games. We never had to worry because the job always got done.”
After he moved on into his own entrepreneurial adventure, Jon Eddy Productions, there was no need to worry about marketing services. He simply called upon Minuteman Press in Colorado Springs. “We produce concerts and live music with top notch bands and we need to let people know about it so we call Cheryl and her staff to produce sharp-looking posters and everything we need to connect our fans to the events we offer. I loved Minuteman Press before, when I was playing for the Sky Sox, but Cheryl Armstrong, in particular, is great. She and her team get everything done professionally and her background of experience bodes well for her company.”
To learn more about joining the #1 rated Minuteman Press franchise family, call us at 1-800-645-3006 or fill out the contact form on this page.