Top 100 Observations

I just finished crunching the numbers for this year’s Top 100. As expected, the totals and percentages are pretty scary. 2009 was a pretty scary year by any standards. But there are some intriguing details that might go unnoticed if you just look at the statistics. One of the things that impressed me was that a number of printers who, despite a decrease in overall sales, were actually able to increase productivity last year. When sales fell off, they also decreased the size of their staffs, which resulted in a higher sales per employee (SPE) on the year. That’s indicative of how they got to be in the Top 100 in the first place, and how they remain in the list year after year. They operate their companies using sound business practices, no matter what the economy is doing. At the other end of the spectrum, I was absolutely baffled by printers who responded to falling sales by adding staff or, in at least one case, opening a new location. Maybe they know something the rest of us don’t, but I rather doubt it. It will be interesting to see how that works out for them.