Mascoat Senior Project Specialist Michael Stelmach is always up to something new, which is one of the things he likes best about his job. He also enjoys being able to interact with all types of people throughout the industry and sharing what Mascoat has to offer.
BIC Magazine recently visited with Stelmach to learn more about his role with the company and how he is successful in selling Mascoat’s technology to customers across the globe.
Q: What led to your position at Mascoat?
A: In 2004, Mascoat President George More hired me as the company’s first salesman to focus on the industrial market. George started the company based around marine sales and, since I had an industrial insulation background, he wanted me to promote Mascoat’s technology in the oil, gas, chemical and petrochemical industries.
Q: What type of clients mesh best with your style?
A: One of my favorite things about working for Mascoat is one day I could be wearing a three-piece suit and the next day I’m in blue jeans with steel-toe boots. There was actually one day when I changed clothes four different times, traveling to a golf tournament in the morning, a presentation, out in the field on an application and finally to a black tie event in the evening. It’s important I mesh with everyone wherever I go.
When I sell Mascoat’s technology, I’m going to talk to engineers at the plant level but then also the coatings contractors who are going to be applying it. They are the ones who are actually signing the purchase orders. So I get to interact with everyone from engineering to the guys out in the field and that’s great. I’m not doing one single thing every day. It can change on an hourly basis.
Q: What’s the most important thing a person should know before taking a career path similar to yours?
A: I’m always traveling and interacting with different customers so you need to be self-motivated. It’s really easy to take a salary and be complacent when you don’t have someone closely watching you. You need to wake up every morning, put a smile on your face and get on the road.
You should also find something that motivates you. My customers keep me motivated. It’s amazing to see a customer light up when I talk to him about Mascoat’s technology and the problems it can solve with corrosion under insulation. I’m able to travel across the globe and educate people on this remarkable technology. It’s a lot of fun.
Q: What is your biggest lesson learned?
A: The biggest lesson I’ve learned is you don’t always have to have the answer. Sometimes our egos take over and we want to be able to answer every question. For example, engineers have very specific questions and the worst thing you can do is try to answer a question when you don’t know the answer. With today’s society, everything is instant since we have cell phones and email. It’s OK to take a little bit of time to respond, ask someone for advice and figure out the right answer to the question. People get a question and sometimes don’t think it through. We’re taught quick response time is a good thing but if it’s not thought out then that’s a bad thing.
Q: Do you have a favorite quote? Why is it your favorite?
A: I’m a big Yogi Berra fan and I like the simplistic quotes. One my favorite quotes is "In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is.” Everyone wants to have a firm answer and one answer might look good on paper. But when you get into reality and get out in the field, it can be a completely different answer.
For more information, visit www.mascoat.com or call (800) 549-0043.