Kat McDanielBy Kat McDaniel, Principal at MEDiAHEAD

It’s something that is very important to me and all of our employees.

From the very beginning we recycled all paper, metal and plastic.

Items are collected all over the facility, recycled, reused or disposed of in a responsible way.

On demand printing, enabled by our digital presses, allows our clients to print only what they need. This reduces their waste and valuable storage space. Did you know that 30% of all printed material becomes dated or factually obsolete before it is ever consumed? That’s why on demand is better!

All components of the dry inks that we use have been tested to ensure no harmful compounds are generated or released during manufacturing, usage or disposal. The dry inks also can be readily removed from printed documents for recycling.

Our presses also feature patented coatings and glossing techniques in combination with the dry inks – these solutions use environmentally benign methods to add protection and enhance prints. No plates or water are used when printing digitally. Less paper is used since there is no need for a traditional make-ready, therefore less raw materials are used.

Recycled materials and paper are used when possible and we work very hard to ensure that our production is waste-free.

Our plant was one of the first facilities to be certified for FSC and FSI in Kansas City.

Orion Award - Clean and GreenIn 2007 we completely redid all the lighting in our 40,000 square foot facility and received the Orion Environmental Award. We reduced our power consumption by a third and we were able to recoup our costs for the project in less than one year.

MEDiAHEAD also received the inaugural Bridging the Gap Environmental Award in 2008 for our efforts in preserving our environment.

“One touch of nature makes the whole world kin.”

― William Shakespeare

By Izzy, the lovable mascot and driving force for success at MEDiAHEAD

Izzy head shotHey, it’s IZZY! Did you miss me? It’s been quite a while since I’ve written a blog. I’ve been so busy with work and all, I am so sorry!

I have to share an experience with you. Something happened recently that almost killed me. Well not really, but I was so incredibly sick. Self induced food poisoning. It was horrible.

Friday Lunch

Every Friday, the office orders lunch and eats together. I think this is just a wonderful thing. I usually participate by sitting on the floor and begging in my usual way, looking for scraps and such. No one was budging this day, because it was pizza (I guess) and they love pizza.

After everyone was done eating, they accidentally left the remaining pizza on the conference room table. Just for ME! So… I jumped up on the chair and got onto the table and helped myself to a pizza buffet! It was so delicious, I just had a wonderful time and no one was even looking. After eating as much as I possibly could, I jumped down and ran around the office to check on everyone’s productivity like I normally do.

Then it hit me… yikes, the pizza wasn’t settling well. Before you know it, the pizza… you know, well… I don’t want to go into the details. Apparently, pizza expands in your stomach. My humans should have told me that.

Izzy Eats Too Much Pizza

Take a look at the picture… I look like a bowling pin with legs and ears. I was not feeling well at all. I lost all my energy and I thought I was going to have to go to the doggy hospital; the rest of the afternoon wasn’t much fun.

Then I got busted.

Kat found my paw prints on the table in the conference room… and the jig was up! Everyone knew I had gotten into the pizza. Hey, they left it just for me, right!?!?! Now I understand that it really wasn’t left for me. What an insidious trap. Dogs should not eat PIZZA!

I feel much better now though. Well enough to tell you the story at least. Thank you for your condolences and well wishes.

Til next time!

– Iz

By Kat McDaniel, Principal at MEDiAHEAD

Building a loyal team can impact everything from your company culture to your bottom line.


Building a Loyal TeamSeveral years ago I was wandering around Home Depot and Target. I was picking up crazy things for my 65 employees before our holiday party: a yardstick for Danny, because he always goes the extra yard for us, a fire extinguisher for Bill, a magic wand for Carly, a magic 8 ball for scheduling and pom-poms for the plant manager.

I tried to pick out something that symbolized what that employee meant to all of us and what we recognized as their strength. One of the employees at Home Depot finally came up to me and looked in my cart – he said “Lady, I just have to ask you, what in the heck are you building?”

“A team” I answered, laughing.

Years later, after the company had experienced some hard times, Danny wrapped up the yardstick and gave it to me for Christmas – he said that all the employees knew that I had gone the extra yard for them that year. There wasn’t a dry eye at the party and I still keep the yardstick on top of my computer to remember that day.


To get everyone involved one year, we all picked names of our fellow employees out of a hat. You had to say ten nice things about your person and build or make something for them. Everyone went all out making mobiles, globes, illustrations, framing artwork and pictures. But, most significant were all the wonderful things that they had to say about each other.


Building a Loyal TeamI’ve found that a big part of feeling valued occurs when employees are aware that they add something to the company that no one else can. Last year, I chose a book that I thought symbolized what each employee meant to the company. The Magician for Michele, The Fearless Leader for Bill, The Book of Joy for Michael, The Old Man and the Sea for Mike, etc.


Every Friday, we bring in lunch for all the employees and they get to pick a different place to order from. The only rule when we come together is that no business is discussed – we talk about kids, dogs, funny stories and weekend plans. On occasion, we go to Roanoke Park and climb on all the equipment and enjoy the sun while eating our sandwiches.


When I got sick in 2016, I had a meeting with my attorney, accountant and insurance broker. They challenged me to write down every question that employees lined up outside my door to ask every day. After writing them all down, I assigned someone or empowered the employee to make that decision while I was gone – they already knew the right answer. And, big surprise, since I have been back, no one lines up outside my office. They all know the right thing to do and make good decisions.

As an employer or a manager, one of your most important responsibilities is making your employees feel truly valued, letting them know that without them, your company, your department and you – would be worse off.

By Kat McDaniel, Principal at MEDiAHEAD

Oreo was born on January 1, 2010 and currently weighs 1,400 lbs.

OreoOreo Special K is a spotted saddle horse that previously was a buggy horse in the Amish country. Most likely, Oreo had a difficult life before coming to Kansas City. The Amish people own horses mainly for practical purposes. And it’s safe to say – Amish view animals differently than your average horse owner.

“They don’t have a sentimental view of animals or nature,” said Steven Nolt, a senior scholar for Anabaptist and Pietist studies and a professor at Elizabethtown College. “They have pets that they love and care about but animals are also part of the world at work. Ideas about animals are not sentimentalized. They are fairly realistic. To work a horse is not being cruel.”

When he arrived, Oreo was fearful of everything, jumping at any noise, constantly looking over his shoulder and wanting to bolt if he was scared. Oreo worked with a “horse whisperer” over the last three months at Forbes Ranch, and he has made great strides.

Oreo is currently living with my friend Denise Farris and her horse Copper. They’ve become great friends already and love to run and play in the pasture together.

Both Oreo and I had a lot to deal with in 2018… and we’re looking forward to healing together in 2019.

Michele Stillwell

Michele Stillwell

Post Author: Michele Stillwell, Marketing Distribution Portal Enthusiast | Marketing Guru | Accounting Shark | Lover of All Animals

What feeds your soul?

I absolutely know what feeds mine.

It’s having the opportunity to leave the office every Wednesday afternoon to go to Crossroads Academy Quality Hill and read with my little first grader as part of Kansas City’s Lead to Read initiative.

Lead to Read connects trusted, caring adult volunteers (Readers) with kids in grades 1 through 4 from every walk of life.

Once a week, for 30 minutes, readers and kids explore the world by reading books provided by the children’s’ teachers.

Lead to Read

It’s all done in the safety and security of an elementary school classroom.

I can’t tell you how gratifying this has been for me both personally and mentally.

It’s hard to describe the feeling of knowing that you are helping inspire a child to love to read.

I truly look forward to my Wednesday afternoons. To be honest, I wish it was longer than 30 minutes!

Either way, hopefully, my little first grader is getting inspired to read and knows how much I care about her future.

If you’d like to volunteer and become a Reader, click here for more information.

Michele Stillwell

Michele Stillwell

Post Author: Michele Stillwell, Marketing Distribution Portal Enthusiast | Marketing Guru | Accounting Shark | Lover of All Animals

What qualifies a company to become a certified woman-owned business?

In order to qualify as woman-owned, a business must be considered “small” as defined by the relevant North American Industry Classification System (NAICS).

In addition, the business must be at least 51% owned and controlled by one or more women who are U.S. Citizens.

Did you know MEDiAHEAD is 100% woman-owned and operated?

We’ve been Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC)-certified since 2015.  We hold certifications in the states of Missouri and Kansas as well as in the City of Kansas City.

What are some of the advantages of being a WBENC-certified company?

Access to Information – Establishments that are certified, woman-owned businesses are granted access to large databases utilized by major corporations and government entities that support supplier diversity.

Networking Opportunities

Increased Education Opportunities


What are the benefits of working with a company that is WBENC-certified?

The Federal Government affords tax incentives to those who conduct business with minority and woman-owned businesses.

Additionally, tax liabilities are reduced for projects funded with Federal or State grants/loans when the supplier is a woman-owned business.

Smaller companies typically bring innovation to the table in order to stand out among the competition, have faster turnaround times, and develop innovative strategies to benefit their clients.

Smaller companies also have the advantage of agility, being able to quickly respond and adapt to the needs of their clients.

Did you know that WBENC-certified woman-owned businesses are among the fastest growing sector of our economy?

By partnering with a woman-owned business, you’re showing your company’s commitment to working in diverse markets and furthering economic growth in your local communities.

As a supporter of supplier diversity, your business becomes more attractive to corporations who are seeking second-tier sourcing suppliers who work with women-owned businesses.

According to WBENC, their certification standard is the most relied upon certification of women-owned businesses as a supplier diversity business program. This certification validates that a business is 51 percent owned, controlled, operated, and managed by a woman or women.

To all who support women-owned businesses, THANK YOU. To those looking to partner with more, give us a call today!

Izzy and PepperPost Author: IZZY

Hey, it’s IZZY! We haven’t talked in quite a while.  I’ve just been so busy keeping things moving at work.

One day my friend Pepper came to the office. We love to play. And boy do we play hard. Then we like to take a break and lay on the soft blanket. (Hey, it’s a dog’s life after all!)

As you can see, I chew on my bone. Pepper does NOT get my bone. She can only watch me chew on MY bone.

Truth be told, I’m really not too good at sharing, but Pepper doesn’t mind one bit.

It’s great having Pepper around as she can help me keep an eye on things, smell the floor, look out the front door and greet all the people that come in to visit. All of these are critical jobs at MEDiAHEAD.

We also keep everyone company at lunchtime. It’s our favorite time of the day!  I always like to show her which people have “the good stuff”, but unfortunately I’ve heard her keepers don’t let her have human food. (total bummer!)

That’s really a shame as some human food is super good.

Pepper doesn’t get to come too often, but when she does, we have a great old time!

Thanks for reading my post. I worked really hard on it. Now back to my bone…

Til next time,


izzy paw

Michele StillwellPost Author: Michele Stillwell, Marketing Distribution Portal Enthusiast | Marketing Guru | Accounting Shark | Lover of All Animals

One of the things I like best about working at MEDiAHEAD is that we give, donate and support so many local charities. Kat is so generous to the Kansas City area and all the charities that surround it.

The Grooming Project is just one of many that we support. If you don’t know what the Grooming Project is, let me get you up to speed.

It’s the pilot program of Empowering the Parent to Empower the Child (EPEC), a nonprofit in Kansas City, MO devoted to helping impoverished families become self-reliant through job training.

This is job training that allows parents to do their most important job: raise their children out of poverty.

Highlights of this program include:                   

        100% job placement

        87% employment retention

        62% off government assistance

The Grooming ProjectThey train their students in the art of dog grooming, which is an in-demand career in the Kansas City area. Groomers make an annual salary ranging from 35K-70K.

Grooming is a profession in which individuals with many of the barriers to stable employment – including past addiction, criminal records and incomplete education – can find employment.

Their Annual RISE Gala is on Saturday, September 15.  39% of annual income comes from this event.

All proceeds benefit their life-changing vocation education program.

Donating to local charities is extremely gratifying and it’s built into the fabric of the MEDiAHEAD culture.

In the end, helping local charities makes you feel good, and helping others is hugely empowering and fulfilling.

The saying “It’s better to give than to receive” is truly a reality and I’m proud to work for a company who understands that.

Thank you MEDiAHEAD for supporting our local charities!

Michele StillwellPost Author: Michele Stillwell, Marketing Distribution Portal Enthusiast | Marketing Guru | Accounting Shark | Lover of All Animals

“What a great idea,” we all told Danny!

You see, it was Danny who came up with the idea that all of us at MEDiAHEAD eat lunch together as a team every Friday.

The rules are that we rotate who picks the place, picks up the food and then we eat together as a team in the conference room.

This is a bonding session.

We talk about our weekend plans, what we’ve been up to and all the great things going on in our lives (absolutely no politics, but occasionally shoptalk does sneak into our conversations).

Several great things have come out of this awesome idea. The biggest one is this….WOW does Kansas City have some great restaurants! It’s so incredibly hard to pick just one every Friday morning.

Browne’s Irish Marketplace

Browne's Irish Marketplace

Browne’s Irish Marketplace

Have you ever eaten at Browne’s Irish Marketplace, 3300 Pennsylvania Ave? They, by far,  have the best Rueben in town! The history, the building, and all the baked goods are phenomenal.

Did you know that they’ve been there since 1901?  If you haven’t had a chance to eat their food or visit them, you have to check it out. Our team absolutely loved it!

Howard’s KC

Another favorite is Howard’s KC at 1708 Oak Street. They use locally sourced organic ingredients, cater and the food is out of this world.



One of our team favorites is the fried chicken sandwich, which has sweet onions, pea shoots and BBQ mayo on a potato bun.

Am I making you hungry?  Like I said…it’s out of this world!

Broadway Deli

Another one of our favorites is Broadway Deli, a little gem located on 2101 Broadway Blvd.

Broadway Deli

Broadway Deli

I can honestly say I think everything on their menu is wonderful.

Everyone on our team had something completely different and we loved everything! Danny got the Helzberg and he said it was fantastic; the bread was actually two potato pancakes. Yummy.

There are so many local favorites we’ve enjoyed since we started doing this as a team. We’re so lucky in Kansas City to have such great local restaurant choices.

Join us in supporting all of these wonderful people who work so hard to give us such great food.

What about you? What are your favorite lunch spots in Kansas City? Let us know!

Izzy gogglesPost Author: IZZY

Hey, it’s me again!

This is my second blog and oh boy is it a good one!

I’m so excited to tell you that I’m now a proud scooter-owner.  YES! You heard that correctly… I have a scooter.

My daddy (aka Bill) puts me in his backpack and drive because apparently they won’t let dogs drive these days. (What’s the world coming to?)

I like to tell Bill where to go. Most of the time, we head around the block and my sniffer goes into overdrive with all of the wonderful smells.

Izzy on the scooter

What are my favorite smells you ask?

I love the smell of the fresh air, fresh cut grass, and flowers blooming.

Oh, and I can detect anything. In fact, I’m sure there’s a new pup in my hood who I’ll need to meet soon.

We also ride the scooter to MEDiAHEAD.

I can always tell when we get closer to the office.

I get really excited because my work will begin when I get there. I’m just so busy, but hey, I love what I do.

Check us out on the video below! (I absolutely love the fresh air blowing through my ears. It’s good for my doggy soul.)

I hope you stop by to see me soon!

And, if you’re lucky, you might just catch me on my scooter!



izzy paw