What was your first job in the industry?
I started in the tire industry as a retail counter manager.
What attracted you to the industry?
Working with my brother, dealing with people, handling fleets, and learning about how things work. Everything we have gets to us by using tires at some point.
What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced in your career?
Overcoming how customers have been treated in the past by "salesmen." I look at doing business with customers more as a partnership and I enjoy consulting them and making sure they are doing everything that is best for them and their business.
Who has had the biggest influence on your career?
There are two people. First my brother, Paul Krufchinski, is very service-oriented and taught me that you need to do whatever it takes to take care of the customer. We have been out together doing fleet surveys or running product to customers in the middle of the night or super early morning. My second influence is Mark Soldani, friend and Bridgestone rep. He taught me how to have fun doing it and form stronger, more personal relationships with my customers. Putting what I've learned from these two men to use has made me one of the best out there.
What is your biggest accomplishment in the industry?
My last full year as a salesman before I started managing I sold $6.8 million in tires. That along with becoming the New York regional sales manager was a goal of mine when I started with the company.
What do you expect to be doing 20 years from now?
I honestly don't know. I've focused so hard the last five-plus years on getting to where I am now. I hope to continue to grow with my company. I also have a new found interest in training and consulting people, so maybe I could do something with that.
What’s the biggest issue facing the industry today?
Our workforce. People are not interested in getting into this line of work. It has become very difficult to find good people.
What’s the one thing you wish someone would have told you before you entered the industry?
That seven years from now you will still be doing fleet surveys.
How do you encourage others to enter the industry?
I try to share my excitement for the industry and show them how well it has treated me and my family. Everything we use on a day to day basis got to us thanks to tires.
Tell us about your family.
I’m married to my best friend, Amanda, and we have 2 beautiful children. My son Blake is 7 and loves soccer. He says he wants to be my boss someday. My daughter Lily is 5 and just started kindergarten. She is my little helper and always wants to be involved in everything.
What’s your favorite weekend activity?
Hiking with my family.
What keeps you up at night?
Honestly I wake up every night thinking about work and different things that need to be done, customers I need to visit, or team members I need to work with more.
Tell us something about yourself others might not know.
I enjoy woodworking and riding my motorcycle. It’s the only time I don't think about work.
What’s your guilty pleasure?
Going out for ice cream! It's my weakness.
Name a talent you wish you had.
Better organization. I am horrible with printed paperwork. I try to keep everything on a computer.
What’s your favorite food?
If you could have dinner with anyone, living or dead, who would it be?
If we took your cell phone away and said it would cost you $1,000 to get it back, how long would you survive until you paid the ransom?
Less than 5 minutes.