Thursday, February 10, 2011

Reprographer (LSG) in North Carolina apparently scores success with PlanWell.

This afternoon, I found on the Internet the “meeting minutes” of a very recent meeting of the “HUB Advisory Committee” of Guilford County (NC) Schools. (“HUB” means, “Historically Underutilized Businesses – and that’s a new term for me; I’ve never heard that term before.)

When you can get “your customers” to talk about “the products/services” you are offering them, that’s fantastic.

First, here's a portion of the "minutes" from that recent meeting:

Guilford County Schools (mentioned throughout the document as “GCS”)

712 North Eugene Street, Greensboro, NC 27401

Phone: 336.370.8100

HUB Advisory Committee Notes January 25, 2011

Present: Committee Members – Anita Bachmann, Cynthia Barnes, Bo Chisholm, Alan Duncan, Tammie Hall, Jarvis Harris, Deena Hayes, Tyrome Holloman

Staff – Gerald Greeson, Andy LaRowe, John Mann, Julius Monk, Sharon Ozment, Monica Walker

Chairwoman Deena Hayes welcomed those present at 11:45 a.m. and led the group in introductions.

GCS Green Initiative

Wayne Branch and Shawn Dees, LSG, LLC, presented information regarding the (school) district’s PlanWell initiative. PlanWell is a web portal that houses construction plans/drawings. Contractors can visit the site at no cost to view construction plans. Contractors can also order printed copies (for a fee) of plans for the projects they are interested in. There is no registration or membership fee to contractors to access the site.

GCS staff can view the order history of projects/plans to determine which contractors have ordered copies of plans. This allows staff to see inquiries for projects and to ensure contractors have appropriate information for projects for which they are interested. PlanWell also links to other websites throughout the state that list projects/bid information.

LSG has trained Facilities staff on the website and will continue to hold such sessions for staff and contractors/vendors as needed.

Tammie Hall, GCSMWBE Coordinator, shared that a press release/email blast regarding the PlanWell website was being written and would soon be distributed.

Second, here’s some information about LSG, the reprographer mentioned above: (they have a really nice web-site):

“Large & Small Graphics”

A reprographer with locations in Raleigh, NC and Greensboro, NC and with affiliate locations in Wilmington and Greenville (all are in North Carolina, USA.)

From the “our history” page on LSG’s web-site:

“A Franklin County, North Carolina native, Wayne Branch (the owner), graduated from Fayetteville State University in 1991 with a B.S. degree in Criminal Justice. He always had a desire to serve others as a law enforcement officer. After a short period as a teacher’s assistant, he became a deputy with the Franklin County Sheriff Department. After working with the Sheriff Department for two and a half years, he made the leap to the North Carolina State Highway Patrol. He continued as a State Trooper until mid-1995 when his life transitioned to a new career path, which at times, was uncertain.

Wayne then made the leap to the North Carolina Highway Patrol in 1993-94. Wayne often says college gave him the education he needed to get started. However, the State Trooper Patrol School gave him the life lessons that would soon lead him down the path of what is now Large and Small Graphics.

After being a state trooper for some time, Wayne’s life transitioned to a new career path which at the time was quite uncertain. After experiencing a brief stint in a few other jobs, unbeknown to Wayne the opportunity for LSG was right around the corner.

The foundation for what is now LSG began in 1996 when Wayne accepted the position of Production Specialist with Plain Paper Solution(s). He operated and managed the production equipment, dedicating long hours to meet deadlines for many clients he still works with today. During this time his work ethic and ability to foster relationships with his clients began to take shape. The seed to learn the reprographics business from the ground up was planted in Wayne and he became committed to one day managing his own reprographics business.

While employed with Plain Paper Solutions, Wayne became knowledgeable and more involved in the A/E/C industry and the technical aspects of running a multimillion dollar business.

After nearly five years with the company, Wayne was presented the idea of running his own business. Although reluctant at first, Wayne seized the opportunity to go out on his own and LSG opened it’s doors in March of 2001. The first invoice under Wayne’s leadership came three months later for a whopping $30.78 from Simplex Grinnell, a popular sub-contractor; still a client today.

From two employees in an 800 square foot building in 2001, to thirty six employees in a 14,000 square foot facility in 2009; Wayne has never forgotten how he was able to reach such a dramatic milestone in his life. With a combination of determination, a solid team, strong values, cutting edge technology and the ability to establish and maintain long term relationships is what makes today, Large and Small Graphics.”

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