Gwin’s Commercial Printing and Engraving
On-the-Job Training Program
Plan to Be Big From Day One
Gwin’s Commercial Printing is a Mobile original. Gwin’s got its start in 1913 and is steeped in the tradition that makes Mobile such a special place in which to live and do business. Michael Payne, and his father, Ernest, founded Copy Graphics center in 1973. The two of them ran the business along with Mike’s mother, Mary Ellen, and his girlfriend at the time, Jeryl Welch, who is now his wife of 26 years. The Payne’s purchased Gwin’s in 1989, Southern Lithographing in 2002 and merged these into a single family business, now a $3 million enterprise.
Gwin’s has become one of the most technologically advanced commercial printers on the Gulf Coast. A full service printer, with offset and digital capabilities, Gwin’s can provide its clients with everything from business cards, letterheads and envelopes to the most complex full color-project including brochures, newsletters, pocket folders, booklets, catalogs and programs. Gwin’s has a state-of-the-art eight-color large format printer for posters, banners and trade show panels. The acquisition of Southern Lithographing in 2002 added foil stamping, embossing and die cutting to the many services offered by Gwin’s.
The very talented staff of Gwin’s has a great deal of experience. They are always eager to help their clients with a project – no matter how simple or complex. Design and layout, logo design, advertising and direct mail pieces, identity packages, graphic design and typesetting can all be provided on a customized basis. Gwin’s also has a retail stationery store located at 4513 Old Shell Road in Springhill, where they offer a wide variety of wedding and party invitations, social stationery, birth announcements, note cards and napkins, as well as many other items. It’s an ideal place to purchase gifts for any occasion.
Payne’s advice to other business owners is to “think big and plan to be bigger than you are, so you don’t end up growing into problems. Set systems up early. It’s easier said than done, but you have to do it.” At Gwin’s, Payne followed his own advice after he discovered early on that he needed a filing system that would grow with the company and now every job has its own number which follows it through the entire printing process.
Payne also says, “Mobile Works gave Gwin's an excellent recruit in Wylie Ferrell. He’s a good person, with a great attitude and a lot of knowledge, but he didn’t know very much about managing people. He’s learning to do that. We took a chance on him because of Mobile Works and the On the Job Training program, where their investment allowed us to take risks we might not have otherwise taken. Gwin's will definitely use Mobile Works programs when we look for our next teammate.”
Payne is planning to use the Incumbent Worker Training program but is waiting for the right internal training project to come up so that he will be able to use the funds to his best advantage because they are only available to companies every two years. You might say that Mike Payne is pro Mobile Works. And Mobile Works is very pro Gwin’s Commercial Printing. Something that Mike Payne already knows from the investments made by both partners.