Lauren Irwin-Szostak founded BPR in 2007 and has served as its President and CEO ever since. She is a highly experienced professional whose career spans over 30 years in the call center industry.
BPR has grown into a leading firm in the call center, customer service and receivables management industry. BPR services companies of all sizes in a diverse range of industries. With a competitive, results-oriented business model and a national network of experienced and trustworthy call center professionals, BPR delivers new levels of continuity and cost reduction for its clients.
A true entrepreneur, Lauren Irwin-Szostak launched numerous companies prior to BPR, including Strategic Advantage Associates Inc. (SAA), a holding company in the receivables management industry, and NCB Inc. (NCB), a full-service collection agency. SAA eventually acquired U.S. Financial Recoveries Inc. (USFR), and subsequently merged NCB into USFR. BPR has also served as an independent management consultant to call centers in New Jersey, New York, Louisiana and California.
Prior to forming her own companies, Lauren Irwin-Szostak served as the central legal manager for Capital Credit Corporation, for which she managed collection litigation for all branch offices nationwide. She also served as a senior business operations consultant for Integrated Health Services, Inc. in Hunt Valley, Maryland as well as a call center supervisor for The May Company in New York City.
Lauren Irwin-Szostak has paved an extensive career path, spanning a variety of professional services. No matter what challenge she takes on, her approach to business is built on a strong work ethic and pillars of mutual respect between her and her colleagues. As she often says, at BPR, “It’s all about the result” — from high-level company values like fair employment to day-to-day interactions between employees. This mindset has driven individual and collective success at each step of her career, and in turn delivered higher levels of success for her clients.
BPR is certified as a New Jersey Woman-Owned Business Enterprise (NJWBE) and by the Woman’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC). BPR is also registered with System for Award Management (SAM) and U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), accredited by the Better Business Bureau and a member of ACA International and RMA International.
Where did the idea for BPR come from?
After receiving repeated questions and complaints about the receivables industry, I recognized the need for a new business model and designed BPR to help creditors and agencies alike.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
Up and ON! I begin each day by prioritizing my daily task list while accommodating the unplanned needs that will invariably arise.
How do you bring ideas to life?
By putting passion and intelligence behind them, selling them to our team, and motivating the team to implement them. Appreciating people and what they each bring to the project goes a long way!
What’s one trend that excites you?
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
My ability to connect with others while multitasking.
What advice would you give your younger self?
Recognize the importance of education, discipline and responsibility, especially in your decision making.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
You can find good in everyone.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
When you feel overwhelmed, dig deeper to power through personal and professional challenges.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
Strive to maintain healthy relationships by valuing others’ time and communicating directly with them.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
Allowing others to influence me to my own detriment by soliciting my help even though they are unable or unwilling to help themselves. Extending compassion and support to others is essential, but you need to persuade people to help themselves and not handicap them further (and yourself) by doing things for them.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
Become a professional organizer for residential and commercial customers or develop an executive concierge firm having sufficient resources to provide more free time to busy people.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
I had dinner with a dear friend, which enriched both of us.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
Any quick read that can make a difference in your everyday life.
What is your favorite quote?
It’s all about the result.
Steve (Stefan) Junge hails from Germany and helps with the day-to-day publishing of interviews on IdeaMensch. While he and Mario don’t share a favorite soccer club, their enthusiasm to help entrepreneurs is a shared passion.