April 2004
VISOgraphic, Inc., Wins the AABE
March 22, the AABE (Annual Awards for Business Excellence) held its 14th annual awards at the Hyatt Regency in Oak Brook. VISOgraphic, Inc., received an “Excellence In Business – Small Company” award, in recognition of VISOgraphic success. Below is a reprint from The Business Ledger who printed profiles of award recipients.
VISOgraphic, Inc.
VISOgraphic, Inc. is a family-owned company that has been in business since 1945. Owner Robert V. Dahlke has taken the small two-press operation of the mid-1970s and built it up to a $5 million company in 2004 that supports 30 employees.

Dahlke purchased VISOgraphic with a strong desire to own his own company, but with no prior knowledge of the printing industry. He quickly bought some books and taught himself a completely new business.

Within several years, VISOgraphic had become an industry leader that prides itself on its long-term customer relationships and a hard-working, loyal workforce, which Dahlke calls the backbone of the company.

“Machines can do a lot of the work, but it all comes back to employee dedication,” said Bob Dahlke, Jr., a company sales representative. “It meant a lot to accept this award on behalf of our employees.

”Today, the senior Dahlke’s two sons run most of the day-to-day operations. John Dahlke runs the company from an operational perspective and Bob Dahlke Jr. is primarily in sales, but also handles financial, human resource and legal responsibilities for the firm.

VISOgraphic stands by its work and its responsibilities to each customer. If a print job is deemed unacceptable and it is an in-house mistake, the job is re-run at VISOgraphic cost with no questions asked.

Because it has in-house graphic, prepress, press and finishing departments, it is a one-stop shop offering efficiency and versatility. For other services such as mailing, die-cutting and laminating, it has formed strategic alliances with vendors that meet its quality, service and reliability guidelines.

The family successors have so far lived up to their father’s name as 2003 was the company’s best year ever and 2004 is projected to be even better. The company philosophy is summed up on a banner that hangs in the production area that declares, “Satisfied Customers Pay Our Salaries”—something no employee forgets.

Business has been challenging over the last five years and we have been fortunate enough to grow,” said Dahlke, Jr.. “We are customer-focused and we stay on top of industry trends. You have to follow how technology changes. We have used it to help grow our company.”