On the Rise: Adam Sweigart
President | LS Tire LLC | Age: 28
What was your first job in the industry?
My grandfather started LS Tire in 1975. Since I was old enough to walk, I was always in the garage helping and learning. My grandfather had open heart surgery in the summer of 2005, and he was unable to perform his day-to-day operations. He was the only employee of LS Tire, so I was able to step up and help that entire summer, with his guidance.
What attracted you to the industry?
My grandfather had started his business out of a small garage, moving it into a converted old barn in 1986 to expand his business. His goal was to always provide the best tires and best service at an affordable price. He was so passionate about his customers and always made sure to leave them smiling as they left. He was always proud to say he never had to advertise because of his customers’ loyalty and word of mouth. I was working full time at a custom aluminum trailer manufacturer as my grandfather became sick with cancer. He passed away in March of 2012 after a hard fought battle. In an effort to try and fulfill his legacy, I went to my full time job during the day, and opened the tire shop from 6 to 8 p.m. every evening. In January 2017 I took a leap of faith and quit my full time job and opened the tire shop on a full time basis.
What is the biggest challenge you have faced in your career?
My biggest challenge so far has been growing the business as the sole employee of LS Tire LLC. The business has grown significantly, which is great, but being the only person installing tires, answering phone calls, handling advertising, handling the books, etc, it can be challenging. I have learned to become a phenomenal multi-tasker.
Who has had the biggest influence on your career?
My grandfather had the biggest influence on my career. He truly loved what he did, and built his business on honesty, integrity and customer loyalty. Everyday I strive to build upon those values and make him proud.
What is your biggest accomplishment in the industry?
My biggest accomplishment is the growth of LS Tire. The sales by volume have increased over 250% in two years. I look forward to continued growth while also maintaining the values my grandfather instilled in me -- honesty, integrity and customer service.
Tell us about your current job and responsibilities. How do you spend your work day?
I am the sole owner and operator. From bookkeeping to installing tires, I’m completing the task. I have no employees but I do get some help from my father and fiancé.
What did you do before you entered the tire industry?
My grandfather started this business so I kind of grew up around it but my first full time job after high school was at Gold Rush Trailers in the service department.
Aside from the basics like health insurance, what’s the most important perk/benefit you’d want from your employer?
A retirement program, I feel like it is often overlooked by many people my age.
What’s the biggest issue facing the tire industry?
It is becoming harder and harder for the small distributors to compete and they provide me the best service. The manufacturers seem to care less about the distributors and as more mergers happen the quality of service and reliability shrinks.
Tell us about your family.
My fiancé’s name is Rachel and we have a 4-year-old yellow lab named Bailey.
What’s your favorite childhood memory?
Probably spending time with my grandfather. Everyone would agree he made everything fun.
What’s been your biggest challenge this year?
Keeping up with the demand. Business has been off the charts and being a one man operation is certainly challenging at times.
If you could wake up tomorrow with one new skill, what would it be?
Patience. I’ve never been as patient as I wish I was.
What keeps you up at night?
Usually critiquing the day and thinking about how to make tomorrow as efficient as possible.
What do you expect to be doing 20 years from now?
I’m not really sure; only time will tell.