Education: Bachelor of science degree, zoology; master’s degree, environmental science, both from Miami University
First job: Junior scientist
What is the most important business lesson you have learned?
Character, integrity and reputation are everything in the business world. These are essential to running a sound, reputable and successful business. You can correct a lot of problems or mistakes in business and life, but it is very hard, if not impossible, to fix character and reputation issues or failures.
What is the best business advice you’ve received?
Never forget who the customer is and the importance of your relationship with the customer. It takes a long time to cultivate and land a customer and an even longer time to gain their trust, confidence and respect. But you can lose a customer quickly from either a mis-step, taking them for granted, or not paying close attention to them and your competition.
What is your definition of success?
Knowing we have worked hard for our customers and exceeded their expectations and, at the same time, running a profitable business with a good return on investment for our shareholders. Also, knowing we have accomplished the aforementioned success while maintaining a great reputation and a high level of respect from our customers, business partners, shareholders, investors and all of our company associates.
What do you like best about being a leader?
The diversity and complexity of the daily challenges that I deal with in running and leading a business and, in particular, working with the diversity in personalities and business styles of the many people I work with every day. I love working with people, and knowing we share a mutual respect is rewarding.