A Chat with Paulette Jarvey, Owner and President, Hot Off The P
Jarvey: Managing the growth and learning the ropes! It was a major learning experience and we did experience a few bumps along the way, especially because the growth was so phenomenal. We eventually partnered with catalog expert Herrschners, who now does our fulfillment out of Wisconsin. The creative and buying is done here.
Catalog Success: What has been your biggest career challenge and how did you deal with it?
Jarvey: Over 26 years you can imagine there have been lots of challenges! Managing growth is always a tricky one. When we first developed papers for scrapbooking nearly 11 years ago, our business quadrupled that first year. We were running so hard and so fast we had no time to develop and implement systems—it was all we could do to make the product and ship it out the door. And while that kind of growth is a fun and exciting challenge to some employees, it's scary and stressful to others. Looking back, there are lots of little things I would have done differently, but under those frantic circumstances I think we managed pretty well. Now, of course, we have systems in place—and those systems have proven invaluable in getting us through quite a few challenges.
Catalog Success: What sets your company apart from others?
Jarvey: Hot Off The Press has two really key competitive advantages. First of all, we know our customer—and we develop product to suit her needs (even before she knows what her needs are!). We know our customer is a busy woman who wants great-looking scrapbooks, but doesn't have the time or inclination to search all over town for the newest supplies. Second, we make top-quality, color-coordinating products—all of which are developed under the watchful eye of our product development and quality control. We have the capacity through our product development team, graphics department and close relationship to our printer (who's just a few miles away from us) to create papers and embellishments that coordinate—and for a scrapbooker, that's a big deal. After all, she's creating handmade keepsakes that she plans to pass down to future generations—quality is very important, but so are ideas and creativity.