My First Blog


lemonHi, I’m Joe Metzger. 2nd generation President of our family business called Metzgers.

Welcome to our new look, our new web site and welcome to a whole new Metzgers!

No, we’re not a new company… we’ve been around since ’76. We’re just better than ever. And, I’m so happy you’re here.

Over the years we’ve experienced growth when others in our industry have failed. We’ve morphed a couple times into something new and better. As a business we feel we are survivors with a purpose. But, there’s much more to our story.

Tom and Joe – Both diagnosed with cancer in the same year:

Gloomy forest image with haze or fog.

I remember autumn of 1989 when my older brother Tom (my business partner today) was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. I recall hearing that he had it in his chest and he needed radiation treatments. It was scary. But, if you know my brother like I do, you would know that he’s quite the fighter. He was private about it and he just tackled it. No fanfare, no announcements or updates, unless you cornered him and asked. He just took his medicine and he began to fight like hell to beat this cancer thing. And, luckily for our family, he did.

Oddly enough, About 2 or 3 months into his treatment, I went to a dentist and got the same news. I am seven years younger than Tom. My wife Dana and I were married for just about 3 months, and I was diagnosed with the very same cancer. It was a bit different as my cancer was a large mass, but essentially the same cancer. The real difference foreshadowed who we are today.

You see, I was put into intensive care. People thought I was going to die real soon if we didn’t act upon it right away. Friends began calling and sending flowers and cards. People came to the hospital to visit me, people phoned each other and the prayer groups were called into action.

"The real difference foreshadowed who we are today."

Tom, quietly fought his fight. But, for Joe…all the attention went to me. Of course, I called upon my own strength, as I needed that. But, what very few people know is that Tom was my biggest supporter. He was doing the research on our cancer. He was discovering the plusses and minuses. He was making the list and discovering the options. I was busy shaking hands and greeting people and trying to help others deal with my sickness or other people’s sickness. I never thought I was going to die and I never thought Tom would either. I knew we could beat this.

We make a great team and a great balanced partnership:

Sketch of a seesaw. It takes balance you know.

Take a look around our web site; you can see it’s kind of the same way today. I’m calling the attention to our company, while my brother is doing the research or meeting with our team to make sure we stay on schedule. He’s checking to see if there’s a better way or a better plan for today and this week. Me, I’m the head cheerleader working on next month’s and next year’s business. I’m trying to uncover the next ideas or innovation that will help our customers, our employees and our company. I dive in with confidence, and know we can outsell, and out-hustle anyone to please our customers.

My brother is the nicest guy in the world. He’s quiet, reserved and gathers all the facts to make informed decisions. I react quickly, exaggerate most stories and have always been told that I could most likely sell ice water to Eskimos. We both joke about it at times, but we know each other so well because we’ve been working side by side all our lives. I delivered papers with my big brother when I was in the 3rd grade. He’d drive me to Church afterward, and we’d hit 100 MPH in his 1970 Pontiac convertible down River Road at 7:00am. (Don’t tell mom and dad about that one).

"...I could most likely sell ice water to Eskimos."

Speedometer blurred and cranking.

Tom and I both survived our battle with cancer and we became better people for it. We both have a drive to survive in all we do, personal and business: When life gives you lemons, sell lemonade.

"When life gives you lemons, sell lemonade."

We both heard that saying during the early days of computer publishing. Our business was only 10 years old at the time, (about 1986) and the Macintosh was introduced to the world. We knew those were our lemons. Typesetting and pre-press companies would be killed by the technology. Or we could innovate, change and survive.

Passion and drive:

We wake up each morning with passion for life, for our families, our employees, for our customers and for our industry. We don’t wake up wondering what our competitors are doing. We really don’t care.

We have a three step plan for our business.

  1. Sell more services & products to each customer.
  2. Get more customers.
  3. Keep every customer that is worth keeping.

Life gives you lemons…

Lemonade stand sign.

Life gave us lemons several times. But, we keep making and selling lemonade. But, we don’t stop there… we want to sell the water, the ice, the cups, and the sugar. We won’t stop there, either… we want to design, build and sell the lemonade stands, then the marketing for the lemonade franchises, and then we want to help these franchises grow their business. It’s how we think. It’s how we survive and it’s how we thrive.

Tags: team



207 Arco Drive

Toledo, OH 43607-2906

Phone: 419.861.8611

Fax: 419.861.3299

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