When asked what he loves most about his business, Mark Scott, owner and founder of Carbon Copy Inc., located on Main Street in Placerville, is quick to answer.
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“I love our community. It’s amazing how you talk to business owners in Placerville, and they know everyone on the block. In Sacramento, they can’t tell you who’s next door… People in El Dorado County treat people like people. It’s not like that everywhere.”
Scott has been in the people business since he and his partner, Chuck Tindall, started the company in 1990. In accordance with its motto, “Office equipment for tomorrow,” Carbon Copy specializes in helping business owners assess and find the right machines to fit their office equipment needs. Once a piece of equipment is installed, Carbon Copy’s experienced employees help businesses maintain their machines and troubleshoot problems if anything goes wrong.
“All of the people working for me are very knowledgeable and have been with me for many, many years,” said Scott. “They’re good people, and they know how to anticipate both my and my customers’ needs. Our goal is to treat our customers with the same kind of care and respect that we would like to receive.”
It’s this kind of dedication to customer service that has helped Carbon Copy stay afloat during recent hard economic times. Scott would say that some of the things that have led to his success started long before he started his career.
“I grew up in a Christian home. My father was in the military, and early on my parents taught me about the importance of responsibility — being responsible for the actions that you do,” said Scott. “Later, I got into Scouting; I was an Eagle Scout and learned about the importance of goal setting. This gave me a certain foundation of which, in starting a business, has carried me through.”
Today, Scott has a lot to be proud of. Upon entering Carbon Copy’s main office, customers are greeted by a comfortable, modern, and professional atmosphere. Many of the machines that the company promotes are displayed along a front wall, and it doesn’t take long to notice the numerous awards the company has received that hang above them. In 1998, Carbon Copy was awarded El Dorado County’s Small Business of the year. Carbon Copy is an authorized Copystar Dealer and has achieved Total Solution Provider and Service Solution status with Kyocera, Copystar’s parent company. Remarkably, the company has also received Kyocera’s “Elite Dealer” award four times in the last 10 years.
Currently, Carbon Copy services seven counties — including El Dorado, Nevada, Placer, Sacramento, Amador, Tulare, and Calaveras — as well as doing jobs in outlying areas, such as South Lake Tahoe, Sonoma, Santa Rosa, and Reno. To meet customers’ needs efficiently, Scott has employees dotted all over each of these seven counties and states that, even in the age of Internet, he feels the reason for the company’s growth is “one customer at a time. People like the way we treat them and so they refer us to their family and friends and business associates.”
To stay on the cutting edge in the industry, Carbon Copy is on the forefront of sending its employees to conferences to learn about new products. Scott himself is involved in many groups in the community, such as Network of El Dorado, and feels that this, too, plays an important role in being able to be a true provider for the community. In the end, though, Scott emphasizes that the biggest keys to his success are being respectful of his customers, being professional, and having a sense of humor.
“Life is way too short,” said Scott. “You have to listen to your customers and work hard to meet their needs, and you have to know how to laugh.”