PostNet Franchise Review: Meet Mary Taphorn
After a devastating hurricane, veteran PostNet franchise owner bounces back stronger than ever before
When Hurricane Harvey rolled through Houston in August 2017, the category 4 storm devastated thousands of homes and businesses overnight. Forbes reports that the economic impact of Harvey is estimated to be around $503 billion, and the aftermath of such a large number becomes real for the people who have to rebuild their lives, their businesses and their community.
For Mary Taphorn, owner of a PostNet Center in Houston, dealing with the aftermath of the storm is a daily reality. Her business was directly affected, as were the homes of her staff and the businesses of her customers. It is in times of crisis that communities come together and this is exactly why Taphorn was determined to keep going even after her center was flooded, her equipment was ruined, and the future of her business was uncertain.
“We were here on the evening before the hurricane hit, and by the next morning the store was completely flooded, and one of my staff members had to come in by boat,” Taphorn says. “It was a really trying time. We thought we lost everything — all of my printers were completely ruined. Luckily for us, the IT professional we work with was able to recover all of our customer data, which was when I knew that we could keep going. We never closed, even as most of the surrounding businesses closed, because we have a lot of mailbox customers — and we needed to be here to get their mail!”
Taphorn’s determination to succeed was bolstered by a GoFundMe page created by the PostNet franchise network. Her peers contributed generously, allowing Taphorn to get back on her feet, order new equipment and restore her business so that she could continue to serve the customers who needed her store to be open.
“It was really overwhelming to receive such generous support from my peers in the PostNet family and from total strangers,” Taphorn says. “We had several customers just walk right in and gave us money. We are very active on social media, especially in the groups who have been hit hard by the hurricane. They know that we are here, and the entire community is committed to shopping locally to bolster everyone’s businesses back. We’re committed to making sure that the work we’re doing is of the highest possible quality; we’re going above and beyond for our customers, and it’s really working.”
In the five years since Taphorn opened her business, 2018 is shaping up to be a banner year. That is saying something, as Taphorn has doubled her sales since she opened in 2013.
“These last six months have been incredibly busy for us,” Taphorn says. “When we looked at the numbers last, we were up 47% over where we were a year ago.”
Taphorn credits a large part of her success to her mentor, Greg Howard, who owns two PostNet locations in the area. Taphorn worked for Howard for four years as a manager of one of his centers, learning the business inside and out, which encouraged her to buy into the franchise and take her future into her own hands.
“It takes a lot of courage to open a business,” Taphorn says. “Though I never felt alone, as I had the support of Greg and the support of the PostNet executive team to guide me. I knew what an owner had to do to become successful, and I was already so integrated and so involved with my community that people already knew and trusted me. I have some customers who come in multiple times a day; I have some customers who are like family. It’s been an enormously rewarding experience.”
As Taphorn continues to help her community recover, she has some great advice for entrepreneurs who are interested in joining the PostNet family:
“I talk to people who are interested in franchising with PostNet all the time,” she says. “What I recommend is that you do your due diligence. Talk to the owners, go visit their businesses and see how this business works. PostNet is a great brand that has a bright future. We’re growing, and we need entrepreneurs who are driven by customer service and active in their communities to join us.”
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Ready to learn more about PostNet franchise opportunities? You can read interviews with PostNet franchise owners on our blog and learn more about our business model by reading over our research pages. To request even more information, request our free franchise report.