Over three years ago on November 28, 2017, Jon and Lorinda Taylor purchased InnStyle and embarked on a new direction and opportunity in their lives. Many InnStyle customers are familiar with their account managers who offer product recommendations and make sure their orders arrive as quickly as possible. However, many have not gotten a chance to meet the family behind the scenes. We asked Chuck, InnStyle’s general manager, what the transition between owners was like. He stated, “From the point of view of our sales staff, the transition from the former owners to the Taylors was refreshing and uplifting. The Taylors have shown a strong passion to create a working environment that inspires teamwork and a commitment to providing outstanding personal service to all of our valued customers. ”
Located in the northern suburbs of Philadelphia, InnStyle has been operating as a family-run business since 1952. It was originally a brick-and-mortar store called County Linen Center in Doylestown. County Linen Center eventually transitioned into InnStyle as the customer base grew and evolved into an internet-based business.
Jon and Lorinda have now been married for 32 years, have six children, a daughter-in-law-, a son-in-law, and a golden retriever named Remy. Jon had a long career as a developer and manager in information technology, and Lorinda was a stay-at-home mom before going back to teaching. We asked one of their sons, Andrew, what it is like working with your family. He stated, “I love working with my family because it allows me to see them more often than I otherwise would. Many workplaces advertise that they have a “family” atmosphere, but for me this is absolutely true.”
Question 1: Jon, what made Lorinda and you want to purchase InnStyle?
We wanted to have our own business since before we were married. We have owned businesses on a smaller level in the past which included selling software through an 800 number and flipping a few houses. So, it was not our first go round in the entrepreneurial world, but it helped prepare us to learn how to operate and manage a larger business like InnStyle. We had been thinking ahead to our retirement and wanted to purchase and continue to grow a business that we could get our kids involved in and then pass it on when we retired. Our two sons are involved right now, with one in flooring and one in InnStyle, and we hope one or more of our daughters will join at some time. After we met the sales staff, I remember saying to Lorinda in the car as we were driving home, “This business will put us in a position to help a lot of people”, and that has been a focus ever since.
Question 2: Lorinda, what have you learned since owning the business?
Jon and I were surprised to find out how much there was to learn about linens and the hospitality industry prior to getting involved with InnStyle. Since then, we have learned a lot about sheets, towels, textiles, trade shows and much more. As a former preschool teacher, I began to realize that business is not much different than teaching because serving people is part of both worlds. At first, I thought of business as a cold, impersonal world. However, I have discovered that, in the hospitality world, people will help each other, serve each other, encourage each other, teach each other and build each other up.
Question 3: What has been your favorite part of owning the business, Jon?
My favorite part of owning the business has been the people and the travel. Lorinda and I enjoy traveling to new places, meeting new people and learning new things. We, along other members of the staff, have gotten the opportunity to travel to industry conferences all over the United States including Albuquerque, Cincinnati, Myrtle Beach, and Salt Lake City. Lorinda and I have also gotten the opportunity to meet some of the customers our staff speaks with on the phone, usually innkeepers and property owners, and enjoyed getting to know them.
We have also enjoyed connecting with others to help give back to the community. Lorinda and I met Ed Fisher, the owner of the North Fork Mountain Inn, in Cincinnati and heard about a ministry he is a part of called Visions of Hope for Africa.They had a need for sheets, so it was great to know we could help out by contributing 50 sets. We recently stayed at North Fork, and got a chance to discuss how we could further support Visions of Hope and look forward to continuing our support. We’ve also had the opportunity to help out the local community by donating soaps and shampoos to a local non-profit organization that helps out the homeless community in Perkasie, called the Revivals Outreach Center, and our staff have had fun donating food to a local food bank, toys to Toys for Tots, as well as adopting a family for the holidays.
Question 4: Where do you see InnStyle in five years, Lorinda?
In five years, Jon and I envision InnStyle expanding its product lines to include more branded products. We hope to eventually move into a facility with a bigger warehouse and updated technology to make the process more efficient and streamlined. InnStyle offers a lot of products so having more space will be a huge added value.
Overall, InnStyle is glad to be a part of the hospitality community and to be able to serve others. Since purchasing InnStyle, Jon and Lorinda have already incorporated many changes. Last year, they updated the InnStyle website with a particular focus on making the website more mobile-friendly. They also decided to add a “Hot Deals” section to the website which features products that are being offered at an even greater discounted rate. They have introduced many new linens and other products to the InnStyle website. If you have any questions our new products or linens in general, please give us a call and speak with one of our friendly account managers. We can be reached at 267-354-6020 or 800-877-4667. Our website is https://www.innstyle.com/.