75 years, four generations, a legacy of commitment

/, Events, Integrated Marketing, Printing, Uncategorized/75 years, four generations, a legacy of commitment

10644316_924012434290386_1303522866360767011_o “The only justification for our Company’s existence is our collective ability to satisfy customer wants and needs on a profitable basis” Ray Lawton, circa 1988

Lawton Printing Services has a unique distinction in that it is celebrating its 75th anniversary this year. Only 7% of businesses survive longer than 25 years and the average life of a business is 40 years. For family-owned businesses, only 3-5% survive to the fourth generation.

Our anniversary prompted me to reflect on this accomplishment and to research the common attributes of other companies that have achieved this milestone. An article from The Economist, December 2004, states that “most older firms also have to evolve in order to keep pace with the times.” An article from Family Business Magazine, October 2012, states “Families with a transgenerational orientation….place their emphasis on the founder’s entrepreneurial spirit, attention to the marketplace, flexibility and sense of stewardship.”

Our history follows closely with the ideas cited in the articles. My great-grandfather (Frank H. Lawton) and grandfather (Frank A. Lawton) worked for Sunset McKee, a regional sales book manufacturer, who chose to consolidate their Spokane operation into their Oakland, CA operation in the late 1930’s. They chose not to move with the company but to open their own business in Spokane. My great-grandfather already owned two small presses which he used to print religious material for the Gideons. In 1940, they opened F.H. Lawton and Son in the chicken coop behind my great-grandfather’s house, sold printing during the day and produced the jobs in the evening.

The company’s philosophy in the beginning was to become a complete service printer for each of our customers. This philosophy is still valid today- we exist to be a valuable resource for our customers in all aspects of marketing. As we look ahead, we continue to look at how technology can enhance what we offer our customers and we remain interested in finding new opportunities to diversify our business.

Throughout the year, we will be celebrating the legacy that my great-grandfather and grandfather started. Every Thursday we will be posting a trivia question on our Facebook page. Old photos from our archives are posted at lawtonprinting.com/our-story.

Join us as we celebrate where we’ve been and anticipate where we are going.

Look for my next blog in February, The Lawton Advantage – Commitment to Our Customers

Laura Lawton

 

 

 

 

2017-07-21T23:54:12+00:00 January 28th, 2015|Brand Building, Events, Integrated Marketing, Printing, Uncategorized|4 Comments

4 Comments

  1. Barb Zenewicz February 5, 2015 at 6:35 pm - Reply

    Truly amazing. Wishing Lawton Printing another 75 years of success.

  2. Lawton Sales Team February 18, 2015 at 7:57 pm - Reply

    Congratulations, nice blog!

  3. Lisa VanMansum February 18, 2015 at 8:48 pm - Reply

    This is an outstanding milestone of which Lawton and the Lawton family should be very proud.

  4. Chadd February 18, 2015 at 11:56 pm - Reply

    Congratulations on 75 years! It has been a pleasure working with your team for many of them, and look forward to many more.

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