Monday, July 15

What’s Your Type? Staples Surveys Small Business Owners About Ink and Toner Practices

Organizing ink and toner supplies is stressing small business owners out, according to a recent survey conducted by Staples.

The office supply company’s Ink and Toner “Know Your Type” survey revealed that a third of small business owners who consider printing important to their business have stress levels that are “high” or “very high.” Business owners who spent the most time managing their ink and toner supplies were often the most stressed, according to the survey.

This seems to be related to the types of people who run small businesses. Over 70% of small business owners described themselves as “hands-on doers” in the workplace, preferring to take care of issues themselves rather than delegating responsibilities to others and waiting for them to take action.

“Small business owners tend to operate as CEOs – chiefs of everything,” Alison Corcoran, Staples’s senior vice president of marketing, North American stores and online said in a press release. “Their focus needs to be on increasing productivity and running a company as efficiently as possible, not worrying about their ink and toner.”

Organizational psychologist Michael Woodward, PhD., added that “Doing it all can mean losing it all. Being hands-on isn’t necessarily a good thing, particularly when it comes to growing a business. Knowing your workplace personality type can help you manage others more efficiently, so you can spend more time on CEO duties.”

The results didn’t end there: 38% of “Helper” types, who focus on the well-being of others and how they can help, reported high stress. However, over 85% of helpers tended to buy ink and toner at the last minute, and over 75% run out of ink and toner during a job frequently. 69% purchase ink and toner in a store.

“Creative” types turned out to be more organized than one would expect. Creatives prefer to work with minimal direction or structure, but 57% of respondents tended to stockpile ink and toner or keep just enough on hand. However, 60% of creatives forget their ink or toner model numbers when shopping in a store for replacements.

“Organizers” who are happiest when following structures and routines were especially keen on recycling, and 68% said they always recycle ink and toner cartridges.

“Quality compatible ink and toner has huge effects on all businesses, especially when they can compare to the original supplies,” says Chris Kovacs, Marketing Manager at Absolute Toner. “It can really save a business hundred’s if not thousands per year for smaller business and possibly much more for larger businesses.”

The “Know Your Type” survey was administered to over 300 small business owners and operaters. It examined work habits, stress levels and personalities and how each related to ink and toner buying habits. Over 200 of the owners surveyed ran companies with 1-19 employees and over 100 had 20-49 employees.

Though the survey is over now, business owners can complete a quiz on the Staples website to find out what kind of workplace personality they have, and how it might be affecting their ink and toner habits.

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