By Kat McDaniel, Principal at MEDiAHEAD

Toxic CustomersI have had several clients over the years that I fired because they were rude to my employees. Toxic clients don’t just cost you money – they can also drive off your best talent. If you don’t stand up and support your employees, how can you expect them to have your back?

Toxic Client Traits

The top traits of a toxic client are being hard to please, unreasonable, dramatic and impolite. They can decrease morale, company engagement and employee motivation. And employees put the blame on their employers, with 60% saying it was their company’s fault for keeping a problematic client.

Considering the current labor market, it’s a good to deal with a toxic client immediately.

I can remember a night that I had to jump out of bed because a client was screaming at the pressman during a press… Okay – she didn’t quite understand that mixing red and blue would result in purple. I told her we would finish the job because we are professionals, BUT I also told her I never wanted to see her in my pressroom ever again!

Setting reasonable boundaries in the beginning can help.

Toxic clients often add new items to existing projects or ask for irrelevant things to be added beyond the scope of a project. You must be clear that these changes or additions will result in additional charges and possibly impact the due date.

Stand your ground when a toxic client attempts to dominate the situation. It’s also important to keep a copy of your communications to back up your version of events. Clients like these rarely pay you on time and often refuse to follow their contracts.

Over the last 30 years in business, I’ve learned that it’s always better to sever ties with toxic clients. It’s not worth you or your employee’s sanity. Fortunately, after being in business for so long, we only work with clients we love!

Miss Frankie BeanBy Miss Frankie Bean, MEDiAHEAD Mascot and Instagram Model

Hello friends! Would you believe this is my very first blog post for MEDiAHEAD? I’ve been the mascot here for a few months now… but out of respect for Izzy, I wanted to put some time in before I tried to fill her author paws in our blogging efforts. (And we all still miss having Izzy around, although I don’t miss her jumping up on my desk and eating all my food or drinking my coffee.)

The time has come for me to start adding my stories to the mix. So here we gooooo!

First of all, as a younger mascot, I’m a bit more up to speed on popular social media sites. I’m well on my way to becoming Instagram Famous and you can follow me on Instagram right here! Okay, 88 followers might not be a lot, but we all have to start somewhere, right?

Miss Frankie BeanAs you can tell in some of the pictures, I am a bit more fabulous than Izzy was… I’m all girl. I have an amazing runway walk, even though I’m a bit of a chunky monkey.

And yes, I love to do The Zoomies in our back yard as well. Maybe the doggielympics are in my future?

Anyway, I will continue to bring stories from the perspective of our shop floor in the coming months. I’m so glad to be on the team here at MEDiAHEAD!

Sniffs and Slobbers,


February was a tough month for myself and my employees. Not only did we have to deal with the death of Tom, my father, but we also lost our beloved Izzy – who most of you have been following in our office and blog for years.

As much as you prepare for this moment, the experience left us reeling with the seven stages of grief: shock and denial, pain and guilt, anger and bargaining, depression, upward turn, reconstruction and acceptance. And grief does not follow a straight line – it bounces between all the stages.

Strategies for coping with grief are varied – my sisters and I dealt with his death with wine, cheese, chips and togetherness. Bill and Dory cuddled Izzy for weeks to let her know how much she was loved.

Bill and Dory’s Izzy

Izzy Izzy

It helps to know that you won’t feel like this forever. Take care of yourself and allow it to go.

You can handle this, even when you feel like you can’t. Don’t try to stifle or avoid your feelings, make space to experience painful emotions and ask for help if you need it. You’re not alone.

Be gentle with yourself. I found grief to be exhausting so I carved out time for lots of rest. Your feelings are normal – the process makes it more difficult if other people around you tell you what you should or shouldn’t do. Allow yourself to feel whatever the heck you want, that’s your normal.

Grief comes in cycles, not a straight line. You reach a point where you feel good, only to feel bad again. Grief has been described as a series of loops.

Bill told me this week that he still thinks about Izzy every day, even though they have a new addition to the family (more to come on that later). Ride the wave.

Kat’s Father Tom

Kat with Dad and Fam Kat's Notes from Dad Kat's Notes from Dad

I will miss my father, but I also celebrate his fascinating 93 years of life. He had four daughters who adored him, three wives that he outlasted, was a world traveler and visionary. He delighted in regaling family and friends with his many stories and THAT we will miss most of all.

Izzy Barking at Mo

Hi guys. It’s Izzy. And this month I have some sad news to share.

My friend Monkey (we called her Mo) passed away a few weeks ago. She was the best cat friend a dog could ask for. I terrorized her daily, but I loved her so much. I still run around the house searching for her every day.

The last few days, Monkey couldn’t walk, so I stayed on the couch and cuddled with her all day and night till she passed.

My parents got some advice on how to deal with my grief.

  1. They talk to me in a calm and upbeat voice, even though it’s hard for them to cope with their own loss.
  2. We’re engaging in new activities. This helps me focus on something new and distract me from the loss of Mo and the uncertainty surrounding it.
  3. We’ve been doing some fun and enjoyable things, like going to the park. It helps me emotionally and makes my parents feel better too.
  4. The vet told them if I show signs of separation anxiety or depression that they should bring me in for a checkup (I HATE going to the vet).
  5. And the best thing of all – I get to go to the office to see my friends every day!!

Izzy and Mo - Best Friends Izzy and Mo - Best Friends Izzy and Mo - Best Friends

One thing that hasn’t changed is my appetite.

Izzy Eats Too Much PizzaI still scour the office every day for any unsupervised snacks. I think I’m getting a little extra because they know I’m sad. I even got some pizza last Friday!

Monkey lived for 20 years, which is a long time for my best friend.

I will miss her so much!


izzy paw

Izzy head shotI’m so glad it’s warming up, aren’t you? I’m just going to throw this out there that some dogs love warm weather, and some dogs love cold weather.

Me? I’m a warm weather dog for sure. Just look at me! I’m small, have very thin hair, and I’m super vulnerable to hypothermia. I absolutely have to wear a jacket and booties when I go out in the snow.

Do I like the booties, absolutely not! My humans captured it all in a video. I look ridiculous.

I prefer Spring and Fall to be completely honest.

The temps during these seasons make me feel happiest.

Some dogs adapt really well to the cold, like the ones with all the fur. I heard that during the cold spell, they actually go outside and just lay in the snow. What? Not me. I’m in and out, quicker than you can say, “Izzy”.

It’s always good to monitor your loving pets when they’re out in the elements. Especially as summer is coming up and it get really hot. I know I get hot in the summer. Did you know a dog’s temperature should never be over 104 degrees?

Did you know that temperature plays a part in our moods?

Izzy's Friend

When the weather gets hot, certain breeds are less heat tolerant than others and bronchial issues can become more pronounced (I had to have help with some of those words…) Some dogs might get a bit snappish in very hot weather and may need more space and less interaction.

I know a dog that freaks out during storms. He pants, shakes and goes in circles. He knows the storm is coming way before it arrives. His humans give him a treat with a calming agent in it and he seems to do much better.

So a word of advice from a dog’s point of view… If your super cool pet gets grumpy in the heat, don’t worry.

Here are some things you can do to make them feel better.

  • Don’t let your human take you for walks during the hottest part of the day
  • Make sure you have plenty of fresh water and shade at all times
  • Get a cooling mat – or kiddie pool to swim in
  • Lay yourself in front of a fan or the ac vent
  • Never have your owner leave you in an enclosed vehicle
  • Watch your paws on the sidewalks, street, sand or hot surfaces

Happy Spring and Summer you guys! Stay safe and cool!

Love, Iz
izzy paw

Happy Holidays from IzzyHi friends! It’s Izzy again with a Happy Holidays message for you.

I sure hope you have a virtual holiday party to go to. I found the perfect ensemble and I’m so ready for mine. What do you think? Is it too much? I’m lovin the pearls… not sure about the fur?

Virtual parties anyone?

This holiday season is surely different from the rest, but we can totally make the best of it don’t you think? I think it would be wonderful if we all get all gussied up and invited each other to virtual parties.

We can have toilet water, then some greenies, eat some fruitable skinny minis, or drink from the kitty bowl. Then to top it off, we can have a few freeze-dried raw chicken hearts.  Sounds so delish! I need to make sure I don’t overdo it.

Happy Holidays from IzzyI just love the holiday season and snoopin around all the packages.

Sometimes, I untie the bows and drag them around the house. Then the cat chases the ribbon, and knocks things down, and then she gets in trouble. HA HA!

Barking of presents, I sure hope I get a baby brother or sister pup to play with this year. Do you think I will??? Oh boy!!!

Let’s not forget about the shelters!

I would like to take a minute to put in a big growl out to all the Shelters in Kansas City. They need all the support we can give them this time of year! Some that take in animals include KC Pet Project, Unleased Rescue and Great Plains SPCA. And there are plenty that help humans as well, like City Union Mission, Restart and Sheffield Place.

This time of year is tough on us all, even tougher due to the pandemic. So please think about all the shelters. If you can go adopt a pet, or give to one of these great organizations, it really makes a difference during the holidays.

Here’s to you this holiday season!  Wishing you and yours all the best! I will drool on you in 2021.

Love, Iz

izzy paw

MEDiAHEAD - Happy Halloween!

Hi everybody. It’s Izzy!

IzzyBOOOOO!!! And Happy Halloween!

Did you know the custom of trick-or-treating on Halloween comes from the belief that supernatural beings, or dead pups roamed the earth at this time, and they wanted treats? YIKES that scares me. But the good thing is we give them treats… that way they’re happy (and then I think they go away.)

I love treats, don’t you?

I wanted to check in to see how everyone was doing and see how creative you’re going to get this year when it’s time to hand out treats. I sure hope you’re handing out treats!

Anyway, I’m super excited and have lots of treat delivery system ideas I thought I would share with you. These might be safe alternatives for you to be able to hand out treats.

Here are some initial plans I drew up for you!

MEDiAHEAD Treat Delivery Systems: Pulley MEDiAHEAD Treat Delivery Systems: Candy Sticks

MEDiAHEAD Treat Delivery Systems: Tube Slide

MEDiAHEAD - Happy Halloween - IzzyI love Halloween, I love seeing all the costumes and I particularly love the treats. I usually grab a treat to give out, and then grab one for myself. Repeat. Do you do this?

So, I know you can’t wait to see my outfit… I took a pic just for you, this is what I am going as this year. What are you going to be?

I love it… what do you think?

Happy Haunting!

izzy paw
– Iz

Izzy - Fav Blue ToyHowdy! It’s Izzy.

Just wanted to check in and see how everyone was doing.

If you’re wondering, I am doing fine but had a bit of a scare this last month. I sounded like a goose when I barked. That was just not right! I thought I might have caught the (you know what). Luckily that wasn’t it.

What I had was really bad though… turns out I had a collapsed trachea. Holy Chew Toy! Have you ever heard of that? I guess it’s kind of common for pups like me.

It was caused by pulling a bit too hard on my collar when I go out for my walks. What can I say? I get a bit too excited to see and sniff.

Needless to say, I had to go on some medicine for a while. But guess what? I got a new collar! It’s called a harness. So now when I pull with all my might, the puppy power is distributed to my shoulders! I guess I didn’t know my own strength.

While I was sick, I couldn’t play ball, or run, or get too excited and it was extremely boring. Trying to keep a dog down, or keep a dog from playing with their most favorite toy, it’s pure torture. I know, I lived it.

Here I am with my new digs and my favorite toy. I’m taking it easy now, but still have to make sure the presses at MEDiAHEAD are rolling along. I just checked, and everything is flying along so I’m going to take a much deserved nap. Being the plant manager is hard work!

Until next time.
– Iz izzy paw

Michele StillwellBy Michele Stillwell, Director of Marketing and Accounting at MEDiAHEAD

Have you ever experienced “unforgettable customer service” where you walk away or hang up the phone and think to yourself, “WOW! Now that was awesome customer service!”

I have… and it really makes you feel good. Especially now when we’re all on edge working from home, home schooling our children, wearing face masks, missing a nice meal in a restaurant or just getting out to socialize.

I would like to share my recent customer service experience with you that happened at a well-known local hospital.

Several months ago, I needed answers. I was taking care of my mom and needed to know what was going on with her. I needed to make choices about her care. I needed some comfort and knowledge as I had never been through something like this before.

The team at the hospital pulled together and got me in touch with a group of their staff. They set up a meeting time with my family and I. They answered all our questions and were extremely thorough. It seemed like they had all the time in the world for us. I felt like these people truly cared about us, and wanted to do the best they could for us, even though it was an extremely difficult time for our family.

I walked out of the hospital and felt like there was a good plan in place. The hospital and staff had it together, and I actually shared my experience with others since it made me feel so much better afterwards. Their customer service was so amazing, it inspired me to write about it. If you would like a referral to the hospital we worked with, let me know!

Unforgettable Customer Service

I think we all like to feel this way… we want to believe that people truly care.

It could be something as simple as a phone call with a customer, a friend, a family member or a co-worker. Treating others as you would want them to treat you is so important.

Customer service is important in our businesses.

We are thankful for all the repeat business we get from our clients. And we work hard to give excellent customer service to strengthen those relationships. If you’ve done business with us, I hope that you’ve had more than one great experience. It’s our responsibility to make you feel that you’re important to us! Regardless of how much you spend with us, we want you to feel like our biggest client every time we work together.

Unforgettable Customer Service(Do us a favor… if we’ve succeeded at that when helping you in the past, please go to our Google Business page and give us an honest review! We would love for you to throw some stars our way.)

If we haven’t had a chance to work together, let’s talk. From sales collateral portals to on demand printing, we’ve got great solutions to help your business succeed.


I am so happy to be writing this blog. I’ve missed you so much! This quarantine thing has me down in the dumps. I haven’t been able to be around the office as much. But every once in a while, I get to go into the office with Kat and run like the wind. Let’s catch up!

I have to tell you about my new friend Bull. He is a Great Dane; he belongs to Danny, the Digital Press Technician. Here are our Zoom Pictures…

Izzy and Bull

I’ve never really met Bull in person, but we recently had a Zoom meeting and I got to interview him. We talked about several things. I was most interested in the fact that he ate 3 couches, is scared to death of the Roomba and I wanted to know why he loved Danny so much.

Here’s how our conversation went on our Zoom call!

ME: So, Bull I heard you’ve torn up 3 couches? Can you tell me why?

BULL: I absolutely love to tear things up, and I’m extremely bored during the day. I really don’t know why I do it. I just do.

ME: But OMGosh a COUCH? You are just so incredible. I can’t even imagine. I tear up toys and bones, and I’ve chewed on the corner of a table… maybe only once when no one was looking. I heard you’re a bit frightened of the new Roomba that Danny bought. How come?

Izzy's New Zoom Friend Named BullBULL: Well when I was a wee little pup, I got scratched on the nose by something that looks a bit similar. It was really a cat. I’m scared of cats too.

ME: Oh dear, that’s not good. So, it frightens you quite a bit?

BULL: Yes, it scares the livin’ daylights out of me. And he runs the darn thing every day. I just sit on the couch and wait for it to stop. Then I stop shaking and everything is okay.

ME: Why do you love Danny so much?

BULL: Well, its always been us guys you know, just hanging out. He feeds me well and does anything for me. It’s a guy thing, a kind of bond you have with your owner that only good owners and their pets have.

ME: Yeah, I understand, I have my owners wrapped around my finger. I love that.

I can’t wait to meet you someday Bull! I really look up to you, literally, emotionally and just in general.

Great Zoom meeting!

Until next time… Iz and Bull

izzy paw