Keith Fisher didn't always envision having a career in the business sector and running his own small business, although he always had the interest after having worked briefly in sales at a friend's company in the 1990s.
Fisher, who lives in Brewster with his wife and their two daughters, worked in law enforcement before making the career switch. In 2006 he started researching ways of opening his own franchise. Since then his life has dramatically changed, he said.
The man opened up PostNet in Somers on Jan. 24, 2008. PostNet is a neighborhood business center, which specializes in the print and copy needs of small businesses and consumers – from color copying, to printing and finishing services such as binding, folding and cutting.
They are also an authorized shipping center for FedEx, UPS and the U.S. Postal service. The store also has notary and fax services as well as mailbox rentals.
What attracted Fisher to the business was the hours and the ability to spend more time with his family – something he couldn't always do while working in law enforcement in the city and often having to work on holidays.
"I like seeing a project from beginning to end," Fisher said referring to his company creating business cards or logos for businesses, for example.
Fisher is a member of the Yorktown, Somers and Mahopac Chambers of Commerce and networks with other businesses at chamber meetings.
He prides his business in being able to provide good customers service to everyone who walks into his store – from listening to their needs, to getting them what they asked for and in some cases tracking a package for his customers and personally calling a customer to let him or her know the package has arrived to its destination.
"They're paying me a little bit more to ship it so it's my responsibility to call," he said.
Even though he opened in 2008 – at the height of the recession – and continues to operate at a time when small businesses are struggling in this economy, Fisher said his business is doing well each year.
"The key is good customer service," he said. "My reputation is everything – it's the same for my business. I feel if I'm good to the customers, they'll be good to me. It's not about the dollars. To me it's as if finding a dollar on the street – it's more important to find the person to whom the dollar belongs than putting it into my pocket."
This holiday season, Fisher's business can create holiday invitations, Christmas cards and photo books and calendars, and can take care of all Christmas shipping and any printing needs.
Here are some tips for customers before heading over to PostNet, according to Fisher:
- If you have a prepaid label on a shipping item, they ask customers to have the package sealed with the label attached.
- If you need graphic design done, then have in mind what you may want designed and bring any ideas to the graphic designer, which can lessen the time and cost spent on the project.
- Fisher is a notary public and tells his customers to call the store before they come to make sure he is there. "I hate it if they have to waste a trip," he said.
Fisher's parent company PostNet has 400 stores around the country. Several of those store locations will be featured on CBS' hit reality TV show Undercover Boss on Friday. Steve Greenbaum, CEO and Co-Founder of PostNet, will go undercover and visit several of the company's locations to meet with employees and to see what's working and what's not out in the field.
Even though, Fisher's store in Somers is not featured on the show, you can still tune in to see Greenbaum meet a former Marine working as a packing specialist while adjusting to civilian life at another location. Greenbaum also encounters a family that is struggling to keep their franchise alive, and another franchise owner who vents about failed marketing attempts.
Undercover Boss airs on Friday, Dec. 7 at 8 p.m. on the CBS Television Network, channel 2.
PostNet is located at 80 Route 6, in the Somers Commons shopping plaza. The store is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
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