Entrepreneurial Success Featured

9:57am EDT July 22, 2002

For Mary Cepicka, there’s no magic formula for entrepreneurial success.

“My secret to success is that we did 12 years ago, and still do today, emphasize customer service,” says Cepicka.

Without a doubt, Cepicka lives and does business by that standard. Her company, Temporary Office Personnel Services, or TOPS Inc., has enjoyed a 10-fold growth in revenue since she founded it in 1987.

In the current business environment, says Cepicka, outstanding customer service is all too rare. The entrepreneur willing and able to provide good customer service, she says, is going to be a standout.

Cepicka founded Temporary Office Personnel Services in 1987 after working for five years with Kelly Services. Her business did $1.2 million in business in its first year. This year, Cepicka expects it to reach $12 million in revenue.

Cepicka, who was nominated for the award by PNC Bank, started the business with the financial help of a customer, whose interest she purchased two years later. She got a boost for her entrepreneurial venture with the help of an SBA-sponsored loan in 1990.