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"We were very happy with the work and the guidance that IDT was able to provide in your time out here at Schneider."

-Jim Berry
Schneider Electric
Integrated Document Technologies, Inc., Computers - Sys Designers & Consult, Itasca, IL National Federation of Independent Business

A Note from Founder Paul E. Szemplinski

Our story here at IDT is probably not unlike many others that have come across your desk. It all begins with a small idea that seems way off in the distant and largely not possible. The idea gets discussed with your inner circle: your spouse, friends, family, business associates & acquaintances. With their feedback, the idea then germinates yet further into something you can begin to get your hands around and you begin to formulate it into a seemingly workable plan - something that now looks remotely possible. Your prior work and life experiences, your goals and ambitions get folded into the mix – until the idea moves from a “remote” possibility to eventually you and your spouse decide to “give it a shot and see what happens.”

The roots of IDT are largely a result of my life and work experiences encountered while employed at Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC). DEC was such a great company on many fronts: wonderful leadership exhibited by Ken Olsen, great employees, superior mini and micro computer products, a unique culture – unmatched by any other company, especially in today’s environment.

There were definitely a large number of wonderful people I met and interacted with at Digital Equipment Corporation. Numerous people (probably unknowingly) who made long lasting impressions in my life as well as many others. In my own way, I tried to bring some of those fond memories, life and work experiences to our small company. Why? Because the “formula” worked: it was fun, you couldn’t help but learn a great deal, incredible products and services were brought to market, the people really made the difference and low and behold - you could even make a decent living!

Blame it on

My Very Early Career with Digital Equipment Corporation

I started in September 1984 and was there until late in 1989…about 4 and half years. I would gather to guess they were some of the most important and impressionable 4 ½ years of my professional career. What a great experience at a young age (19 years old when I started) to serve (in any capacity) at the number 2 computer company! I started out in the Facilities department working as a mail room clerk, reporting to an early influencer in my life – Dan Gallagher. Dan was “Salt of the Earth” people. I have quite never have met a man like him since, except for my current business coach, Ed Breclaw. It was a blessing to have Dan as my boss. The gentlemen taught me a lot of things from a business perspective – most importantly, the issue of delivering the absolute highest levels of quality, customer service. He taught me and always reminded me to focus on the little things…Dan would frequently remind me, “Paul, the little things matter.” He continued with, “ The employees here at DDO are our customers, so make sure you take care of them and treat them like you would like to be treated as a customer.” Most of the time, I got it, but when I didn’t, he wasn’t shy about letting me know, in a firm, but very respectful way. Well, little did I know that he would leave such an indelible mark about, “Service! Service! Service!” A trait that I would do my very best to carry with me throughout my career and eventually bring to and attempt to spread throughout our organization.

It wasn’t hard to find great people within Digital who took a sincere interest in the people that worked at DEC. DEC was more like a family than “employee/employer” relationships that exist today. One particular individual – Tom Kull – took specific interest in me. He saw something frankly I didn’t even recognize I had – namely a desire to learn. He nicked name me the “Sponge” because everything he could dish out at me in terms of knowledge transfer I gladly took. He loaded me up with RSTS, RSX, VMS manuals (oh what fun), gave me access to his systems to let me “play around” with them. I drank from the “fire hose.” It wasn’t long before with Tom’s help and my dear friend James Raboin, I had the mail room automated as far as it could possibly be at the time. We all strung Ethernet cables together (many of you have no idea what was behind that effort…it was a project that consisted of more than entering a WEP code via a keyboard), scrounged up scrap parts and built our computers, installed VMS/RSTS/RSX/Pro/Rainbow software, installed & configured All-in-One, DECNotes server (I think that is what the messaging board app was called), all kinds of really fun and leading edge stuff! I did all this in my spare time (with their help when I would break stuff) - after returning from college (I went to night school), on the weekends - all while continuing to work my normal job in the mail room.

While working for Mr. Gallagher in Facilities, I was fortunate enough to meet EVERYBODY locally at the DDO facility – all the big shots, administration and support staff, sales people, field service, software developers, night shift operators, etc. I worked with outside contractors for wiring, air conditioning, computer room build outs, vendor negotiations with Xerox, paper supply companies (boy did we burn through the paper…where were the Greenies then?), office supply companies, and so on. It was one of the very best work experiences I had. You could not help but learn so much about Digital Equipment Corporation and why it was such a great company, begin to understand its employees, the culture, its customers and partners - in a manner which most people would never be able to appreciate.

Facilities and the Mail Room, Short Lived but I Cherish the Memories!

I don’t think it was more than 9 months before Tom Kull offered me an opportunity to interview for a job within the Channel’s group at the DDO facility to serve as a pre-sales consultant – working directly with him and with the Channel group’s volume distribution partners - at the time consisting of: Hamilton Avnet, Pioneer-Standard Electronics, LEX Computers, among several others. Of course, I was shocked, but extremely excited with the opportunity. Subsequently, I interviewed with the Personnel department, Tom and Al Polich. And, it wasn’t shortly thereafter I was promoted out of facilities and jumped in with both feet into the world of sales.

Initially, Tom and Al put me in a position to answer technical questions via the phone and an online system called, “RONNIE” which stood for the Reseller Online News & Network Information Exchange (if memory serves). RONNIE was used for all the resellers and distributors of DEC to submit questions, problems, etc. they were experiencing during a sales cycle or in a post sales situation. Additionally, I was responsible for maintaining the library of software that would be requested by DEC’s partners for demo purposes. I maintained “Software Product Descriptions” which legally described what the software did and how it was expected to perform, among performing a number of other support services such as assisting with setting up distribution partner training labs, seminars, road shows, trade shows, you get the picture. Shortly thereafter, I was moved into other positions within the same sales group such as: Pre-Sales Engineer, Design Win Specialist, an OEM Sales Representative and finally my tenure concluded in 1989 serving as a “Distribution Sales Representative” calling on the very distributors (Avnet, Pioneer, LEX and others) that I originally started out serving in a support capacity.

I went through crash courses of DEC Sales Training….which I dreaded because everybody else that went through that training had way more experience than I did – from college, to previous sales jobs, to just plain old life experience. I don’t think I was more than 21 or 22 when I went into the DEC sales training program. Funny story: I was the ONLY sales person to attend a Central Area wide sales training event – without a suit and tie – because I didn’t own one at the time. I had to rely on a lady in Sales Support – Carol Mazzaro, my cousin Terri, and Lori Z. in HR to help me coordinate my “professional attire” thereafter as they pointed out that my “Miami Vice” wardrobe wasn’t going to cut it anymore.

In 1989, I was lured away by one of DEC’s Distribution partners, LEX Computers to become their Senior Systems Engineer. They offered me 2.5x my then current salary and eventually after wrestling with the situation, I decided to resign and join LEX. I didn’t feel all that bad with the decision as LEX was a DEC partner and I wasn’t leaving DEC all together. What excited me about the opportunity besides the money was the ongoing DEC/Apple alliance…recall the rumor was floating that DEC was going to buy Apple? I ponder from time to time how things might be very different today if that acquisition would have happened. LEX had the Apple line, I had the DEC experience and at time before I left DEC, I had sought out and gained extensive knowledge of the DEC Pathworks offering.

LEX was seeking an application to differentiate itself from other DEC distributors in the marketplace. Ah! What a novel idea, the “solution sale!” Well we found it. It was a small startup company in Silver Springs, MD. called, Micro Dynamics, LTD. The founders were Audri and Jim Lanford. The product was brilliant! It was a complete solution that did this thing called, “document imaging” in a high volume environment, on a platform that was ideal – Macintosh. Why Macintosh? Out of the box, it had graphics, it had a mouse, it had easy to use interface, it was stupid simple…and you could make a lot of money selling it! They needed a distribution arm. Our company needed an application that could leverage both the VAX and the Macintosh…with a little tweaking and reconfiguration of software server components, we could achieve that with DEC Pathworks – and we did just that and more! In a short period of time, we were successful – we landed several key accounts in Chicago including: First Travel Club, a company who had Andre Dawson of the Chicago Cubs as a spokesperson, Abbott Laboratories, Dow Chemical, Motorola, among several others. Life was good.

LEX was a relatively short lived experience. I never understood the whole story, but we were eventually purchased by Pioneer Standard…I stuck it out for about a solid year I think. By this time, Tony Annoreno and Tom Lyons (ex DEC) had joined me over at the LEX/Pioneer organization. Pioneer was a very old company that only understood the business of “distribution” and box pushing. Software applications with a solution sell in the mix just didn’t fit. You couldn’t inventory software and move it in 30 days…the concept of a sales cycle taking more than 30 days just didn’t fit in the culture or their pro-forma statements. As a result, they asked me to back off this “document imaging thing” and take a position elsewhere in the company focusing exclusively back on DEC sales. It wasn’t very long before I came to the conclusion I need to continue doing something I had a real passion for – and that was Document Imaging.

In early 1992, I resigned from Pioneer and started up my own company focused on the Document Imaging marketplace – Imaging Systems, Inc. I was newly married, two years by now. My wife Deb was secure and awesome in her job as a Registered Nurse. We had no children at the time thus, the time in our lives was appropriate to take the risk. I think I put about $3,000.00 of my wife’s and my own money into the company to start it up. A life changing event it was.

The Flip of a Coin (not Three Coins in a Fountain)

I started the company with a partner in roughly May of 1992. The scene is memorable. I affectionately title the story, “The Flip of a Coin.” It goes like this, my then Accountant – James J. Pupelis (currently serves as our CFO today), myself and my old boss at LEX (who was then going to be my partner) were in Jim’s office drawing up paperwork to officially start the company. It is decision time about who will serve as president of the company. Neither one of wanted to speak up due to the possibility of hurting one or another’s feelings about who would serve as “president.” So, my accountant pulls out a coin from his pocket and says, “head is president, tail is vice president.” He then proceeds with, “Paul, you call heads or tails.” So, I call heads, Jim flips the coin and sure enough it ends up heads. That’s how we decided who would be president. So, what’s the big deal?

In the beginning, the partnership was off to a great start. My partner was renting a house in Elgin, IL and we both decided to use one of the rooms in his house as an office. We paid out the company a fair portion to cover the cost of renting the house that was used as office space. His live in girl friend had a full time job so it worked out fairly nice. During the day, the house was pretty much set aside for running and conducting the business.

My ex partner had an old account in need of these tiny electronic parts called diodes that were used in the manufacturing of ballasts - eventually ending up in florescent lighting fixtures. New generation of high efficiency ballasts were in large demand the early 1990’s. Business was good…the orders fed us about $20,000.00 a month in profit!

We had some decent revenue and profit coming in from my old clients that I was servicing at Pioneer. Pioneer didn’t care because they weren’t in the document imaging business anymore. It took about a ½ year to get new customers to begin buying Document Imaging solutions (mind you this stuff was very new in the market) from a startup. New business for Document Imaging finally began to emerge and eventually the diode business ran dry. It was no surprise. We both knew the diode business was too good to last.

Unfortunately, my partner couldn’t make the transition over to what we originally went into business for. Thus, our relationship ran out of steam. I wanted to continue in the industry of Document Imaging and have my own business, but not with him anymore. On a number of issues, we just did not see eye to eye.

The “separation” process started out amicable but ended up messy. I got very frustrated after wrestling with the situation, endless talks and no resolution in sight, and eventually was left with no other option than to resign – thinking that is what he wanted me to do. Apparently, that wasn’t case and he wouldn’t accept my resignation. Eventually, we ended up in litigation to get out of the relationship.

I was left to run the company myself until the matter between us was settled – sell, support, market, finances, whatever I could do to keep it afloat while I have a large millstone around my neck. He checked out. Yes, I know, you are asking yourself why didn’t you make him an offer to buy his shares out…I did make him an offer to buy his shares out, he refused and made it abundantly clear no amount of money was going to be enough. Meanwhile, while all this is going on, I am trying to keep our vendors and customers placated. No payroll checks while all this going on either. Our savings is running dry again because this is going on for months now.

When the case originally was being litigated, the presiding judge was simply going to break the company apart. Before it was too late, I fired my counsel after getting a second opinion offered by the legal firm representing my brother-in-law’s firm (who I am thankful to and for this very day). My new counsel – Steve Ruffalo, Fuchs & Roselli (continues to serve as our firm’s legal counsel) completely turned the situation around for the better. Eventually, the judge ruled in my favor because as president, I maintained a cool head and in his opinion I was fair throughout the entire process. My partner and I parted ways in 1995.

That’s why I affectionately call my story, “The Flip of the Coin.” If that coin would have been tails, I have no idea where I would be at today. Remember, God has a reason for everything. Think very carefully about who you are contemplating partnering with!

My Grandpa Leo & The Infamous Letter of Credit

During the early years, we needed to issue a “letter of credit” to a creditor in which we were going to buy all these diodes from until we demonstrated our firm was credit worthy. No bank we turned to would step up and give a startup company a loan of that magnitude. We had no real assets to pledge and it looked very bleak at the time. I turned to my Dad and asked permission if I could seek Grandpa’s financial assistance…assuring him the money was going to be put at no great risk.

My Dad agreed and supported me in my request, for which I am very grateful for. My Grandpa Leo – pledged $60,000 of his own money into a bank account for a creditor who was asking of our small company to pledge a “Letter of Credit.” My Grandpa Leo (God rest his humble, generous & loveable soul) didn’t bat an eyelash…he gladly offered to help me. In his sweet voice he said to Deb and I, “Hey, us Pols need help each other out….just like the Jewish people help each other.” With that said, it was done. In about a 90 day’s timeframe, I returned all $60,000.00 plus the applicable interest…never once did we need to use any of the cash.

Life Will Throw Curve Balls at You

If the business partnership falling apart wasn’t enough, in December of 1994, I lost my Mom to a cancer battle. She suffered enormously. It wasn’t but 6 months earlier we also lost my other Grandpa (my Mom’s Dad) to a surgical procedure that went all wrong. I wasn’t prepared nor was I expecting for such life changing events to happen so close to home. Sadly, my Mom would never see our first born son who was only 3 months away from being born into this world.

Eventually though, in the summer of 1995, after all the dust had settled, I had taken over the company and from that point on, assumed a new name, leaving the past largely behind and thus begun “Integrated Document Technologies, Inc. (IDT).” First and foremost, the Lord was there with me throughout this entire ordeal and he gets all the credit for why I am where I am at today. Without Him, I have no idea how I could have battled through that difficult period in my life. While at times it certainly felt like I was “alone” there was always lots of support and encouragement from my Wife Deb, my family, Jim Raboin, James Pupelis, my loyal customers.

1996 - Integrated Document Technologies, Inc.
2003 - IDT Consulting, Inc.

Integrated Document Technologies, Inc. and IDT Consulting, Inc. – are all actually rooted in the foundations built during my employment DEC. It was in the mid 1980’s that I was introduced to the concept of a “frame grabber” for a customer need that arose at RR Donnelly. What was a “frame grabber” you ask? Back then it was a DEC MicroVAX housed in a BA123 box (skunk works I believe was the internal project name for the BA series of VAXes), with three video graphic boards….two to do the VAXstation graphics stuff and another board that plugged into the bus that did image capture with a free-standing image capture camera that was mounted on a tripod. X-Windows was layered on top of VMS, and the camera connected via a cable to the VAXstation.

The DEC VAXstation R&D engineering group had a prototyped application that would take an “image” of an object that the camera was focused on. In this case, RR Donnelly was in the publishing business, so the concept of mixing images with an application such as an “Interleaf” or other like publishing application was in order and the VAXstation was the platform of choice. I believe that Rich Treadway was the lead product manager for VAXstation offering and via Rich, Tom Kull, the assigned Sales Executive (I think it was either Tom Skwirut, Vince Gillespie, or someone else I can quite remember. We presented the prototype to them, they eventually bought off on it and that was my introduction into the world of “imaging.” Since then, I’ve been hooked.

Summary and Heartfelt Thank You!

Today, the companies of IDT still are focused on document imaging, but the industry has grown into plethora of technologies that are generally now called, “Enterprise Content Management.” IDT does all sort of things related to the ECM industry: Consulting, Reselling of Software (Oracle, Microsoft, EMC, Kofax, many others), Software Development, Professional Services, Support Services, Document Scanning Services, among many other services. Additionally, we offer SMB financial and CRM solutions from Microsoft. We serve a number of customers in the Enterprise & SMB marketplaces in all kinds of different industries.

From a work environment and culture perspective, our leadership team tries very hard to bring forth many of the ideas and the culture that was instilled in me and our CTO while employed at DEC. We are not perfect, but we give it our best each and every day for our cherished employees & your families, our customers and our partners. Thank you, Thank you and THANK YOU!!!

Below are the people from Digital Equipment days that are absolutely worth mentioning. Having worked with you, for you, either directly or indirectly, know that in a big way you helped shaped us into the kind of organization IDT is today. Regrettably I have no doubt left people out I shouldn’t have, so forgive me in advance if you are not mentioned.

James P. Raboin – My best friend and our CTO for the last 14 years! Jokingly we always kid ourselves about being separated at birth because we think so much alike on numerous fronts! Since that first day at DEC, we haven’t been separated since. While he lives 900 miles away, he is and always will be a dear friend and more like a blood brother. Technically speaking, he is our “Spock” for those of you who like and can relate to the original Star Trek analogies. “Logically speaking,” Jim’s and my DEC badge numbers are 1 number apart…story behind that “chance” will continue later. One of many memorable settings…Jim sat me down in the Field Service DDO training room one evening and gave me a quick lesson on what was exactly involved in programming…it was in that setting about 15 minutes into it that I quickly ruled out I did not have what it takes to become a programmer! BTW, Jim is one of the best darn developers – great sense of understanding business goals and transferring them into real world applications that our customers enjoy using!

Greg Sarrazine – Jim, Greg and I were drinking buds and nearly every Friday night we went to hang out at a Bar close to the DDO facility and drive to Wisconsin to drink (because I wasn’t old enough at the time to go to establishments in Illinois). Greg was one of those guys who didn’t need apparently to cash his payroll checks. You literally would go to his house, and his payroll checks were lying around un-cashed for weeks at a time…remember, we got paid weekly? Greg, had a Porche…(first time and last time I have rode in one of those). Jim and I were given the keys by Greg to take it for a spin….and BOY did we! I don’t know how fast we actually went because we buried the speedometer on Route 290! I lost track of Greg, although I did talk to him probably 10 or so years ago…I believe he ended up at SunGard?

 Tom Kull – Nobody I respected more than Tom Kull when it came to technical nuts and bolts DEC stuff…from VAX, MicroVAX, MicroVMS, PDP, RSTS, Pascal, PRO 350/380, Rainbow, Ethernet, DECnet, VAXstations, Ultrix, (remember that??), we had lots of laughs together, I learned so much from this gentlemen…beyond tech stuff. I am talking business & life in general. He was yet another great mentor for me! He *always*had a joke for me. Tom is largely responsible for seeing capabilities in me that frankly I didn’t even know I had. Tom lobbied internally within DEC to pull me out of the mail room and put me into a technical support capacity managing incoming questions from DEC’s distributors on a system called, RONNIE …. How many of you remember that? Honestly, I don’t know where I would be today if it wasn’t for the many long conversations Tom and I had , eventually leading me to become a founder and owner of IT firm. I hope I can circle back with Tom someday soon.

 Terri Keene (now Annoreno) – My favorite 1 st cousin in the whole wide world that got me an interview with Dan Gallagher, Facilities Manager at DDO facility! She and her than Fiancé always was trying to fix me up with dates…and I can’t say they ever let me down! Love you Terri, but you already knew that!!!

 Tony Annoreno – Tony worked at RDC where he met my cousin, Terri. He eventually married Terri, left DEC to work with me at Pioneer Standard Electronics, Netscape, Microsoft and now he is at SAP. Two children – one going to college and the other a Senior in High School. Tony introduced me to the punk scene, downtown Chi-town bars, and we all three had a lot of fun when we lived in apartments at the “Village in the Park,” Schaumburg, IL. Breakfast in the morning on Saturdays, Pee-Wee Herman’s Morning Show, Dinner’s in the evening, picking up each other’s dry cleaning, etc. Terri, Tony and me…I was their adopted child!

Dan Gallagher (Salt of the earth people!) - this gentle-man, gave me my first job at DEC! He was so attentive to the details, made me understand the importance of delivering the “highest quality of service.” Little did I know (and probably him) that his teachings would carry throughout my entire career and life – even to this very day! THANK YOU DAN and I hope someday we get reconnected!

 Ed “Deputy” Delp (what a great sense of humor) – he was the Area Security Officer for DEC. He was affectionately nicknamed “Deputy Delp.” Odd that such a serious position would have a humorous guy at the helm of the ship! I worked with him a lot due to the interaction with Facilities department which I played a very small role in. His work was fascinating to me (he carried the role exceptionally & seriously when necessary) but beneath his badge, what a wonderful man who just took a genuine interest in me as a person.

 Bill Moldovan – What can you say about Bill. He is a legend! His badge number was in the four digits, so truly one of the “Original Sales Executive” and eventually served as my official labeled Sales Mentor. His is responsible for one of the most important introductions in my life – Yu’s Mandarin Restaurant in Schaumburg, Il. Hold on, bear with me, … this restaurant is where I took my eventual wife on our first date. It so much impressed her, she agreed to marry me! Thank you Mr. Moldovan!

 Tom “Tommy J” Lyons - what a character, great salesman and God rest his soul! Tom was truly a unique individual in every aspect. Tom was an avid Guitar player (inspired me to pick it up), humorous beyond all belief, worked hard/played REAL HARD. Every time I see Jack Black, it is “Tommy J” reincarnated. It is my belief that Jack Black stole Tom’s “shtick” all the way including his passion for guitar. Tom eventually came to work for me at my company in the mid 90’s for a short stint. Unfortunately, I was deeply saddened to hear Tom passed away about 8 years ago.

 Lori Zerbinopolous (now Steele) – I met Lori when I was in HR at DDO. In fact, Jim Raboin and I started exactly the same day (our badge numbers are 1 number away from each other) and I with Jim in the orientation conference room waiting for Lori to eventually join us. Lori introduced me to so many people at DEC, got me settled in and feeling like DEC was home immediately. I was fortunate enough to find Lori again just recently. I was in a very difficult point in my life when I decided to resign from DEC to pursue working for a distributor of DEC called, LEX Computers. As a friend, she provide much guidance, coaching, etc. (whatever you want to call ) it when I was in the midst of making such a difficult decision. The idea of submitting a “resignation letter” was not an easy thought in light of where the company and I were at in 1990. Very tough decision then, but one I do not regret in light of where I am at today. She re-introduced me to Lynda Pollack who would you believe is now working for us here at IDT as an Inside Sales Representative, and we are very happy to have her!

 Al Polich – Al was my first official boss in the Sales Department. He and Tom Kull seemed to take specific interest in me as person – beyond the typical employer/employee relationship. He, Tom and Dick Soden seemed to have much respect for each other. To this very day, I owe much to Al for taking a very big chance on a young guy with no formal technical degree at the time, no technical computer training, no business acumen whatsoever. What exactly Al and Tom saw in me, I don’t really know. I eventually left DEC and when I resigned, I had that tough conversation with Al Polich. He wasn’t at all happy with me…for obvious reasons. He invested a lot in me, and he felt like I ended up bailing on him. At the time, I felt I had to leave in order to further my career. Remember the Apple / DEC alliance that was going on? I had taken specific interest in that, and a young, startup company out of the West Coast called, LEX Computers had both product lines – DEC and Apple. I was presented an opportunity to focus on those two product lines and with the money that was offered (about 2.5 times) what I was salaried at DEC, I couldn’t pass it up. In hind sight, I should have resigned to Al in a different manner. It bothered me for many years, to the point I eventually found Al and I called him and offered an apology for the manner in which I handled the matter.

 Roger Miles – Mr. Ethernet, Mr. DECnet….what else could you say about Roger? He showed me how to perform the infamous “vampire” tap into the original Ethernet cable…remember that??? You would literally use a drill, special drill bit and hopefully not wreck the expensive cable by drilling all the way through it. Then insert that enormous contraption affectionately labeled the “Vampire” tap which would recess into the cable and have a connector on it that you would then bring through the ceiling down to your computer like a MicroVAX, MicroPDP 11/53, Rainbow, Pro 380 (one of my favorites by the way). I saw Roger a reunion late last fall…doesn’t look much different!

Richard Soden – Richard was my second direct boss (I think Unit Manager was his exact title). Richard was a “thinker” and was seemingly always reserved, but an extremely good & fair manager. Richard, Al and Tom were all three closely connected thus I was inevitably in the mix too. I recall sitting in Richard’s office meeting at the “DEC Store” (when they had them for short while) with him frequently – talking about training, sales situations, “here is what I would do”, coaching me in the truest sense. That is a similar technique now that I use when I talk with my direct employees and you know what, it works!

The seasoned veterans:Tom Skwirut & Vince Gillespie (saddened as Vince has passed on). I ran into Tom at a reunion last fall. Tom is very successful executive at Sun. Between Tom and Vince, these two gentlemen were always top performers all the way around. These were the two guys to model one’s self after. Professional, polished, knew their stuff, knew how to get deals done - but at the same time, humble and never looked down upon anybody because they better than you – even though they really were! I enjoyed going on sales calls with them – learned a heck of lot from these two individuals!

Dave Baum and Rebecca Heide – Boy did we have fun together. I did house sittings for them – Why? I was single, so I could do it! Beautiful home! Dave had a screaming boat…I think he called it a “pickle fork.” Beautiful 633CSI Beamer….he offered to sell it to me for 18k …stupid me I took the DEC issued Ford Taurus company car. To this day, I love the look of that 633 two door. What a fine automobile. Dave and Becky took me under their wings. I was in my early 20’s when I got into sales at DEC. Again, maybe it sounds sappy, but you just don’t see this kind of bonding in a work force these days.

Carol Mazzaro – Carol, what a sweet heart. There were a number of ladies in a sales support function that I hung with because they were very nice and had a wealth of knowledge to share and Carol was one of them. Tony, Terri, Carol and I would frequently have lunches together. She was always encouraging and coaching me, what an awesome, classy lady!

Warmest Regards,
Paul E. Szemplinski
President and Founder
630.875.1100 ext.301

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