Employee Spotlight: John Depa

Author: Camille Lehmann, Marketing

Nahan’s vision of making eye-catching marketing materials come to life in print is only possible because of our amazing team. One of those amazing team members is John Depa, our Press Shift Leader (2nd shift). I had the privilege to get to know John, learn about his time at Nahan, and how he enjoys his time outside of work.

John Depa
John Depa and his wife, Laurie.

“Gary Primus once told me that if you’re never making any wrong decisions, you are not making enough of them.”

John, when asked to share the greatest advice he’s been told

Over Two Decades of Commitment to Nahan

Immediately after high school, John dove into the printing industry, working for a small family-run printer by the name of May Printing, alongside one of his friends. Later on, his friend applied to work at Nahan and encouraged John to do the same. John joined the Nahan in 1990, starting by working in the warehouse of the old Nahan location, spending 7 years on the team. After some time away, John rejoined the Nahan team again in the late 1990s and has been with us ever since. Over his years at Nahan, John credits his greatest accomplishment to having been a part of a team to install three presses and the knowledge he gained from those experiences.

“I really enjoy working with all the people at Nahan and the customers that come in for press checks. It’s amazing to see the products we produce – the quality is second to none.”

Life Beyond Nahan

When he is not leading his hard-working team, John enjoys spending time with his family. John lists his wife, Laurie, as his greatest inspiration, describing her as always keeping a positive attitude no matter the situation. He also spends as much time with his children and grandchildren as possible. In his spare time, John enjoys spending time outdoors playing a round of golf or adventuring by camping and boating.

Careers at Nahan

If you are interested in learning more about a career at Nahan, visit our careers page or contact us to learn more.

Bio: Camille Lehmann is on the Marketing team and started with Nahan in January of 2020. Camille is responsible for assisting in Nahan’s marketing strategies and goals. She is currently pursuing her master’s degree in Marketing with a specialization in Project Management. In her spare time, Camille enjoys writing, going to coffee shops, and spending time with friends and family.

Employee Spotlight: Dan Peterka

Author: Camille Lehmann, Marketing

For thirty-two years, Dan Peterka has been an employee of Nahan. After over three decades of spending his time in both the Customer Service and Sales departments, Dan will be retiring as of early August. Dan has been such a pleasure for the entire team to work with and we are excited to share more about his time at Nahan and what his future plans hold.

Dan accepting his Newbie Award in 2013 for having the most new accounts in a month.

Looking Back on His Nahan Career

Dan began his career at Nahan in the Customer Service department where he spent approximately twenty-two years. He credits this time for helping him grow in the field and eventually helped him move into Sales, where he has spent the past nine years.

What Did Dan Enjoy the Most?

When asked this question, he responded that working with and getting to know clients on a variety of projects. One of the benefits of working in the print industry is the ability to meet so many interesting people and help bring their vision to life through print. Dan says that relationships have been key to his success and joy at Nahan, not only with clients but with his Nahan team. Having the opportunity to work with a group of dedicated people is something he will always be thankful for and will cherish as he moves into retirement. One of Dan’s fondest Nahan memories is “Quality Days” where everyone in the company would come together in an auditorium to do department report-outs. He enjoyed how everyone was together and how great of a time it was.

“To any of our new employees or those considering starting a career at Nahan, Nahan is a great organization – and if you want to grow and develop, you will get the chance here.”

Dan Peterka
Dan (left) and other Nahan team members accepting an award at our 2018 Sales Recognition Event.

Plans for the Future

On his first day of retirement, Dan plans on creating a master list of everything he wants to do before Thanksgiving. He also plans on cooking a special dinner for his family with the help of his granddaughter. Overall, Dan is looking forward to being able to have more time to be present in the moment and available for family and friends. He is excited to start checking off things on his list to get done,  and also to be able to volunteer and give back to the community in new ways.

I had the opportunity to work with many outstanding customers, and to them I want to say ‘thank you for the opportunity.’”

Dan Peterka

Careers at Nahan

If you are interested in learning more about a career at Nahan, visit our careers page or contact us to learn more.

Bio: Camille Lehmann is on the Marketing team and started with Nahan in January of 2020. Camille is responsible for assisting in Nahan’s marketing strategies and goals. She is currently pursuing her master’s degree in Marketing with a specialization in Project Management. In her spare time, Camille enjoys writing, going to coffee shops, and spending time with friends and family.

Get to Know Nahan’s Marketing Manager: A Q/A Session with Melissa Fransen

Author: Tracy Tougas, Account Executive

Keeping Nahan’s name and quality reputation popping up on Social Media, planning events, creating eye-catching and poignant external marketing materials, and helping to retain Nahan employees is just part of the short list of what Melissa Fransen does here at Nahan. She is a burst of positivity and is always working two steps ahead. I’ve had the opportunity to get to know Melissa and thought you would all enjoy getting to know her a bit too!

Marketing Extraordinaire

Melissa, why did you choose the marketing field?

I love to think differently. I love to create. I love to push boundaries and drive results. That is what I love about marketing and why I chose the career.

What is your favorite part about working at Nahan?

I can’t pick just one. First, and foremost, I love the people. The people at Nahan are truly outstanding and I’m thankful to be surrounded by great co-workers.

Secondly, since I love marketing, there is just something about seeing something come to life. Seeing a brand’s artwork go from a design to a beautifully crafted tangible marketing piece is something truly awesome. Day in and out I get to see what goes through the doors at Nahan, and it’s really something! I’m blown away with what we do. (Interested in seeing some of our work? Request a sample pack).

Tell us about one of your favorite Nahan capabilities?

I’m truly amazed at the capabilities of Variable Data Printing. I’ve been in the marketing field my entire career and before starting at Nahan a little over three years ago, to be honest, I didn’t know that technology like VDP even existed in print technology. It’s amazing how the power of data can be utilized to create a truly customized marketing piece. Instead of doing a campaign of 50,000 of the same exact artwork to 50,000 customers, you can do 50,000 customized unique pieces to 50,000 people and each one will be customized to that specific individual. I love data and the technology component of VDP. API integrations, CRM systems, and custom marketing programs get me excited since there is so much potential with it! 

Melissa Fransen with her husband.

What is the favorite project that you’d worked with in the last year?

I’d say it was our website launch.  We launched our new website in Sept. of last year and as anyone in the marketing field knows, it’s A LOT of fun and it is A LOT of work. I’m really proud of what the team accomplished and we worked with a fantastic partner to bring our vision to life! It was also really fun to discover some really amazing talent we have on our team from awesome photographers to fantastic writers and editors that are contributing to our blog. Check out our website!

On which social media platforms does Nahan appear?

We are on LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Follow us to stay in touch!

What do you like to do outside of work?

I love spending time in the outdoors! I like to fish with my husband Mark and we spend a lot of time with family and friends. We have large extended families and live an active life and I’m very thankful for that! There is always something or someone to celebrate. I enjoy traveling. I also like to play the piano and have played since I was six years old. I’ve really been enjoying teaching a few students of my own. With more time at home with the pandemic, I’ve been enjoying reading (which I haven’t done in a while), gardening, and planting flowers.

Melissa Fransen
Melissa Fransen with one of her great catches.

How has COVID-19 changed your role and the marketing Nahan is doing?

Over the past several years, we’ve had a big presence with conferences. Most of our largest conferences have been canceled and we’ll be participating in our first virtual conference this Fall. So, that has changed for us. Our social media presence has been growing, along with our followership, so we’ve been staying very active on our social media pages. We’ve ramped up our direct mail efforts since we are in the industry and we know it drives results. We’ve also kicked off an eNewsletter so we can stay in close contact with customers, job seekers, and more. Since we aren’t having client visits, doing in-person job fairs, and more, this helps us stay connected. (Interested in signing up for the eNewsletter? Sign up below in the footer of our web page).

Tell me something recent that you are proud of…

In 2019, I became a certified Social Media Strategist (SMS) with the NISM. I’m working on my CEU credits currently to keep up with my certification. With the marketing industry constantly changing, I think it’s important to continuously learn so I can stay at the top of my game. In the last 5 years, I’ve obtained this SMS certification and five HubSpot certifications.

I also enjoy volunteering and making others smile. I’ve participated in several volunteer activities over the last couple of years, including United Way volunteer events. Some of my favorites have included writing thank you letters to Veterans, an activity day at a local Nursing Home, and making tie-blankets for babies in the NICU.

Author: Tracy Tougas

Tracy works at Nahan as an Accounting Executive partnering with our National Sales Reps to build customer relationships and meet customer needs. She has been at Nahan 12+ years and another 2 back in the 90’s. In her spare time she enjoys traveling, gardening, hiking, cooking and spending time with friends and family.

Top Five Nahan Blogs of 2019

 

Author: Melissa Fransen, Marketing Manager

It’s been another great year for Nahan and we have been thrilled at the performance, likes, and shares of our new blog articles that were added to our revamped website launched in October. Thank you for all of your comments and the great feedback! We appreciate you!

In case you’ve missed it, here were our top five performing blog articles of 2019 so you can check them out:

 

  1. Nahan Differentiators that Drive Results
  2. Three Benefits of Working for a Family-Owned Business
  3. Metallic Inks Add Fun and Interesting Effects
  4. Build a Dynamic Plan for Direct Mail
  5. What is Information Security?

We have a ton of great articles in store for 2020, so be sure to check back to our site for the latest and greatest articles. Plus, we also share these articles on our LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter pages. If you have content that you’d like to see from our team in the future, feel free to contact us anytime and let us know. We are just getting started and 2020 is going to be a fantastic year!

Bio: Melissa Fransen is our Marketing Manager. She started with Nahan in May of 2017. Melissa is responsible for Nahan’s marketing initiatives, which includes everything from conference planning to social media initiatives. In her spare time, Melissa enjoys spending time with her husband and enjoying time in the outdoors with family and friends.

 

Three Benefits of Working for a Family-Owned Business

 

Author: Melissa Fransen, Marketing Manager

If you are considering joining the team at Nahan, I’d like to tell you about three benefits of working for a family-owned business from my perspective. I started with the team at Nahan in the summer of 2017 in the Marketing Department and from the first time I walked into the building to interview, I could “feel” the family atmosphere of Nahan. As I walked around the facility, every single person I came in contact with said hello to me. It might sound trivial, but that truly mattered to me when making the decision to work for Nahan.

Here are three benefits that I see in working for a family-owned business:

 

1. The Owners Play an Active Role in our Business

Nahan was founded in 1962 by James D. and Helen Nahan. Today, we are owned by three of their children. One of their grandchildren works here as well. Our company was built from the ground up. Today, we are proud to have over 350 employees and we are in the top 20 of the largest employers in St. Cloud, MN.  The three owners of Nahan are actively involved in our business today and they are also the long-term visionaries for our future. They are accessible for the requests of our employees and are available for the needs of our customers, willing to step in at any point to help and/or make decisions. It’s the personalized service and investment in our clients’ success that has continued to be one of our biggest Nahan Differentiators.

Our owners care about our employees and they care about our success. When we celebrate anniversaries, they are here. When we have quarterly business update meetings, they are here. When we have milestones, they are here. That is quite a good feeling to know who we are working for and that the owners are invested in each of us as employees.

 

2. Values

At Nahan, we talk a lot about our Nahan Values. These values were established by our owners and our leadership team.

N = Never Stop Being the Best

A = Always Treat Others with Dignity and Respect

H = Honesty and Integrity

A = Amaze Our Internal and External Customers

N = Now is the Time

The owners live and promote these values and they expect each of us to do the same. When we recognize our team members, we always associate the recognition with upholding at least one of these values.

 

3. Culture

The last, but most important benefit I see in working for a family-owned business is our culture. I had recently pulled a statistic and 28% of Nahan’s employees have worked here for more than twenty years. Wow, that is pretty amazing! These employees have seen each other through milestones, growing families, successes, and challenging times as well. We also have employees that have brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers, and children that work here. Family is important to the owners at Nahan and it’s important to the employees as well.

We did a little video recap for one of our employee meetings at the end of last year. We asked our employees to share their favorite part about working for Nahan. It was a resounding winner – the majority of our team said “the people.” I’d definitely agree.

Learn more about Nahan’s culture and current job openings.

Bio: Melissa Fransen is our Marketing Manager. She started with Nahan in May of 2017. Melissa is responsible for Nahan’s marketing initiatives, which includes everything from conference planning to social media initiatives. In her spare time, Melissa enjoys spending time with her husband and enjoying time in the outdoors with family and friends.

Nahan Differentiators that Drive Results

When we meet with new and prospecting customers, we often get asked what sets us apart from others. We take pride in answering this question because we’ve had over 50 years of experience gathering reasons from customers we’ve had the pleasure working with. We’re happy to share some of the reasons that allow us to have long-lasting relationships and help us foster new ones every day.

 

Problem Solvers

At Nahan, we take pride in being more than just a print vendor, but a print partner. We take time to listen to our customers’ ideas, challenges and questions, offering the best print solution for their business. Sometimes a customer will contact us with an idea but is unsure the exact means it takes to execute the project. We offer solutions that not only meet the needs of the project but also find efficiencies along the way.

 

Results Driven

When discussing projects with customers, we want to know their goals and how we can help achieve them. If their goal is awareness, we ask ourselves what size and paper will make their piece stand out to customers. If it’s transactions, how do we personalize the mailer to target the audience and include exactly what they might want? We’re always ready to collaborate in order to bring results and show ROI on every project.

 

Detail Oriented

We’re here to make customers’ projects the very best they can be – and we do that with our attention to detail. Whether it’s our client services team working with customers on their print quotes to find the right size piece to best meet the Postal Service requirements or our production team making sure each piece aligns exactly with the design, we have the right people in the right place to ensure your project achieves the best results.

 

Quality Focused

Printing is our passion and when something is your passion, you want to produce the very best. We pride ourselves on developing the best quality product possible. We do this through our state-of-art presses, high-quality paper sources and G7-certified color standards, resulting in award-winning work. We ensure our customers are just as satisfied with the end result as we are, and that’s why we’ve been a leader in the print industry for over 50 years.