According to John Frisch, there are three ways to succeed in business: Either you inherit an operation, grow one through strategic brilliance, or just work really hard. For Frisch, hard work has been the key to success, which includes his 16-year tenure as president and owner of Higher Information Group.
“I would describe myself as a certainly the best ditch digger … I’ll finish my ditch first,” he says. “And I think that wherever I’ve gone good, bad or otherwise it’s because of perseverance.”
At age 47, Frisch has been defined by his persistence through no less than a half-dozen different ownership ventures. After working on and then supervising dock shipping to largely fund himself through Shippensburg University on route to a degree in rural and urban development, Frisch had an opportunity to work for himself in his 20s. He and a friend ran a company selling point-of-sale systems before, at 31, Frisch bought Harrisburg Copiers, a long-established but struggling equipment supply firm.
“Thirteen employees, they did [1.3 million in sales], they were in financial distress,” he recalls. Whereas now, his company employs more than 100 employees and has rebranded itself as Higher Information Group (HIG), which “manages information from inception to destruction” and offers business equipment, IT services, document storage, shredding services, corporate printing, and web services. And HIG is still growing.
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