In the era of big-box stores, business conglomerates, and ever-expanding retail chains, Lake Forest Pack and Ship sticks out like a well-polished thumb.
At one point, Lake Forest Pack and Ship owner Michael Forman operated two Mail Boxes, Etc. chain stores, including one out of his current location. But while the rest of the world was headed toward consolidation, he went the other direction and decided he wanted to do things his way.
His business slots neatly in with the “shop local” vibe popular around the holidays and that has become a priority for individuals and families interested in supporting businesses based in their local communities.
Lake Forest Pack and Ship offers all of the services customers can find at the big chain shipping stores, but with a local touch. That includes computer stations for customers to print documents from a thumb drive, as well as the ability for customers to email the store to order documents to be printed and picked up. Michael has lived in Highland Park for decades and knows the area and its residents. He offers personal packing and shipping services tailored to the needs of his North Shore customers.
The business’s local vibe is perhaps best reflected in its mailbox rental service. Rent a mailbox from Michael and you get a key to the front door so you can access your mailbox 24/7. If you come home late from a business trip and need to go back on the road early the next morning, you can swing by Lake Forest Pack and Ship so you won’t miss anything important.
Another service that customers are increasingly taking advantage of is customized mail forwarding for snowbirds. While the U.S. Postal service will forward mail, it can’t do it like Michael can. Mail comes in to Michael’s shop and is then forwarded to warm, sunny locales based on a schedule desirable for the customer.
And while he remains locally focused, he helps customers who need a global reach. Michael ships through the national and international companies such as DHL, USPS, UPS and FedEx, and remains customers’ point of contact.
“We don’t need to be part of a large chain or international conglomerate to provide first-class, worldwide shipping service,” he says. “If you ship through me I’m the point person to fix any problems that might come up. You won’t be on hold forever with UPS or FedEx.”
A significant base of clients for Michael is sales reps who need ready access to shipping services for samples and products, as well as faxing and other professional services.
“More and more sales reps are working from home and we serve as an extension of their home offices when they need the services that they might receive if they worked in a corporate office,” he says. “We want to be a partner in their success.”
Lake Forest Pack and Ship is located across the street from the Lake Forest Metra station and just far enough off of Market Square that parking is easily accessible. From its location to its friendly environment, it’s all part of Michael’s effort to provide customers with the highest quality packing and shipping services.
“Our friendly, neighborhood environment has inspired longterm relationships with our customers for 25 years,” he says. “We’d love to meet you!”
Lake Forest Pack and Ship is located at 736 N. Western Avenue in Lake Forest, 847-615-0222, shippinglakeforestil.com.