“NuVinAir Nine” with Mike Ruwitch
What is the best advice you have ever received, and from whom?
“Michael, It does not matter whether they like you or hate you; do they respect you?” In his thick Bulgarian accent, this advice was given to me as a raw 29-year-old CEO by my first mentor Steve Georgieff, former CEO of Universal Match and Ferguson Machine.
What was your life journey before NuVinAir?
After failing in my quest to be a lifelong ski bum, I was the first corporate trainee at Brown Group, a wholesaler and retailer of shoes, including Buster Brown. I learned all aspects of the business, including retail, wholesale, and finance. Life then gave me a cruel twist as cancer took my father. At age 29, I jumped into being CEO of a precision machining company. It was thirty years of building relationships, learning Chinese, and coming home smelling like machine oil.
What do you enjoy most about owning a NuVinAir franchise?
The job shop owner’s dilemma is always finding a product (which I never did), and now in this business, I have several products unlike anything else in the industry. It is exciting to make a difference for our customers and watch them light up when watching NuVinAir at work!
What has been your biggest challenge in owning a franchise, and how did you overcome it?
Overestimating the revenue streams and building a sales network to support our products. This is still a work in process that, hopefully, we all will overcome.
What is your best skill as a franchise owner?
Patience….try not to get too high or too low. Stay with the program and adjust as necessary.
What does success mean to you?
Family first. Focus on respect. Leave things better than how I found them.
If you could invite any four people to dinner, dead or alive, who would you invite and why?
My father- who died far too early so we can share stories as peers and talk about his grandchildren
Michelangelo – a true genius in sculpture and painting. I would love to understand his creative thought process
Jerry Garcia – I’m a Deadhead, and the guy knew how to party on top of songwriting and singing
Robin Williams – Every dinner party needs humor, and there was no one like Robin
What is one unique thing about you someone wouldn’t learn until they got to know you?
I am an Umpire for USA Field Hockey, the national governing body for the sport of field hockey in the US. I officiate games on a national, state, and local level.
What’s the number one item on your life “bucket list”?
Take a space flight.