As we celebrate our 30 years of service and support to the aviation industry, I can’t help but reflect on my incredible journey and glance into what the future might look like. When I first started with Mitchell Aircraft, I left behind a large well established corporation that had been in business for nearly 120 years, had over 1,000 employees, offices and manufacturing facilities in multiple countries and whose company’s stock was traded on the NYSE. Sounds impressive doesn’t it? As a 21 year old fresh out of college it was like hitting the lottery.
That was 1992 and for all the benefits and security a large corporation offers, it just wasn’t enough to tame my drive and desire to be a part of something more meaningful. I wanted to work hard, learn everything I could and be a part of a truly great company.
Since the day I started here, nearly 25 years ago now, Mitchell Aircraft turned out to be exactly what I was looking for.
It didn’t take me long to appreciate the energy, urgency and excitement that came with working in the aviation industry. No two days are alike. Workdays spill into nights and weekends as AOG’s (Aircraft On Ground) don’t ever seem to happen 9-5. I learned early on that this is how you “earn your stripes” in this business and how you gain the admiration, trust and support from your customers.
When I started here at Mitchell, we had about 12 employees, little inventory and made a living by brokering parts, solving customers problems with the hard-to-find items, being responsive and paying close attention to the details. Today, our company looks vastly different; 46 FTE, hundreds of thousands of line items in inventory, OEM and distributed material, a PMA development company and a military & defense business.
All while remaining true to our heritage and never losing sight of what allowed us to succeed and expand in this industry.
Our success and growth would not be possible if it weren’t for our team of dedicated, hard working and committed employees. As we have grown, our employee retention has reflected a desire to be a part of this extraordinary company. We average nearly 13 years of service per employee. This is something I take personal pride in and something few other companies can match.
In the end, it’s our global customers that benefit the most from this commitment, dedication and understanding of the aviation business.
Our founders, Dick Sebion and Greg Fletcher, felt strongly that a motivated employee who is incentivized and rewarded for their work will take care of the details that keep our customers coming back. By taking care of the customer, they in turn will take care of you with repeat business. Our success is a clear reflection of this basic premise and is the foundation of which our company is built upon.
As market forces dictate change and how we go about our business, Mitchell has evolved and continued to expand and adapt to these conditions. Support contracts, repair administration, supply chain management and sustainability are expanding as our customers leverage market conditions that reduce spend.
As we celebrate our 30 years and reflect on the past, we are preparing for the future and all its challenges. Since Mitchell Aircraft was started in the basement of our founder’s home some 30 years ago, to our respected position in the market place today, our desire was never to be the biggest supplier…..just the best! As we celebrate these first 30 years, we look forward to the future, embracing all of the uncertainty and opportunities that arise.
Buckle up and enjoy the ride!