Pop Quiz, Monday with Mickey Swortzel

Mickey Swortzel

The Pop Quiz, Monday is a fun little exam that we love to give to savvy business owners. The examination is not a surprise after all since the interviewee already knew about the questions in advance. However, we can always pretend and have fun with the scenario of a young entrepreneur sitting in class nervously biting on their pencil. They are ready to take a pop quiz on a chapter that they were supposed to read the night before. Instead, they played Metroid all night on their SNES (Oops, this was me in high school). The real purpose of the pop quiz is that this is a fun way to introduce business tips from real-world experiences that you can not learn in a classroom. We want to thank our entrepreneur for being a good sport and volunteering their time to answer a few questions to help our community grow from their knowledge.

I want to introduce you to our guest today who will be taking our Pop Quiz Monday.

Can you please tell everyone your name?
Mickey Swortzel

Mickey Swortzel
Photo credit: Mickey Swortzel

What is your job role?

Tell us about your company?
New Eagle specializes in mechatronic controls, which are the electronic brains that drive mechanical systems. Some companies ask us to design and build their control systems and custom applications from start to finish, while others turn to us for expert advice and support. Our crew of engineers provides the specialized engineering services your team needs to solve difficult mechatronic control challenges, while our software tools and supply chain offerings provide you with the resources you need to create a reliable control system for your machine, fast.

What do you love most about your job?
The privilege of starting a company from scratch and growing it to a profitable company with a thriving culture.

What motivates you to get up every day and go to work?
At this stage of our company (10 years old), I am getting to do what I love instead of what needs to be done. When a company first starts, there are a lot of jobs and a limited number of people, so you just sort of divide and conquer. Now it’s exciting to watch other people take the reigns in various areas and blossom. While I also get to focus on the finance and HR roles, which are my skills and preferences.

How do your co-workers inspire you?
We had big growth goals in 2018. The team started out saying “how is this going to happen” to “let’s make it happen.” That engagement and commitment are inspiring.

How do you have fun at work (team building, pranks, etc..)?
The team enjoys being together – so it’s everything from organized company events, working on service projects together to thirsty Thursdays, trivia nights and spontaneous restaurant runs for lunch. Ultimately a company can encourage the framework for fun, but the employees have to like each other genuinely and want to hang out together. We’re fortunate that this is the case at New Eagle.

What are some of the challenges of your job?
As founders, we always are striving for more, bigger, better. Casting that vision can be a challenge and knowing when to be content and celebrate success.

What are some lessons learned from a past project that you can share with us?
When we first started in product development, we had a project involving a white truck. That project took multiple years and was ultimately unsuccessful. The problem was the project was never fully defined regarding time, budget or responsibility. So it has become the phrase we use when we aren’t defined enough in our product development. We’ll say “we are ‘white trucking’ this.” This reminds everyone that internal projects need to be managed as well as customer projects.

What advice would you give to someone who is starting out in your industry?
It never gets easy. The problems change, but business ownership is not the most natural career path someone can choose. I spent the first few years of New Eagle looking forward to when it would be “easy.” After about five years someone with more experience finally told me the secret that it doesn’t get easy and that was actually a huge mind shift for me. I stopped being discontent and rose to the challenge instead.

Thank you for taking our pop quiz today. You get an A+ for effort. You can learn more about our interviewee and their business by visiting them on the web:

twitter: New_Eagle
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NewEagleLLC/

Author: Ricky Singh, MBA

Editor of The Startup Growth.

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