Mitch Hensler was born and raised in Watertown, Wisconsin, just 30 minutes west of Sentry’s headquarters in Oconomowoc. He grew up fishing in the area’s many lakes and hunting in the woods with his dad, Dave. “My dad’s a hard worker, and it really drove into me that a good work ethic can go a long way.”
That work ethic led Mitch and his father, Dave, to Sentry. Dave joined Sentry in 2011 on the factory floor as an assembler and then a floor supervisor. When Mitch started thinking his job at a beer distributor wasn’t the right career path, his dad encouraged him to apply for an opening on the manufacturing floor. Mitch joined the team in November 2017 as a Workshop Technician building components for single line panels and shelters. Until recently, he and his dad worked right across the shop floor aisle from each other, and Mitch would sometimes reach out to his dad for help.
After 18 months on the job, Mitch enjoys the diversity of job tasks - from welding and rolling coils to testing and assembling parts. A far cry from the repetitive factory work he thought might be the bulk of his job.
work cell technician
Three things he’d take on a deserted island: “A knife, because you always can use a knife, a tent to stay dry in all the elements, and matches to light a fire.”
Favorite book: “Hatchet” by Gary Paulsen.
Did he know how to pronounce Oconomowoc before working at Sentry Equipment? “Oh yeah, I was in sports and they were our rivals!”
commitment to excellence
He says being an employee owner gives him a sense of job satisfaction. “The fact that we're an employee owned company is pretty awesome,” he says. “There are little things that Sentry does for you that make you appreciate working here - the 401(k) match, the gainshare and stock plan, and even the tailgate parties we have once a year. Those little things really make the difference.”
Although Mitch is relatively new to Sentry and the employee owner business model, he was recently nominated to the SOCC committee that advocates for employee ownership. “It’s an honor. I take pride in what I do. If there's a Sentry logo on the cooler that means my name's behind it too,” he says.
For customers, it means they’re getting the best products built by people who care about every product that goes out the door. “We have more behind the product then a typical competitor because we all have stake in the company. You can see it when you go around the shop, people work with each other to make the perfect product. I think that says a lot about Sentry.”
All of Sentry’s employee owners challenge themselves to be “A” players in everything they do: how they work, how they interact with each other and how they serve our customers. For Mitch, this means being willing to help fellow coworkers with a smile on his face.
“An 'A' player is someone that's willing to help out no matter what the situation. They never look at a job and say, ‘I'm better than that job.’ They’re always willing to help with a positive attitude.”
He says the keys to success at Sentry are the same traits his dad instilled in him over the years: show up on time, work hard and have a good attitude. “It's a great place to work. Give your all and don't be afraid to ask questions. You’ll learn and grow in the company before you know it.”
Employee-Owner Profiles is a regular feature that highlights members of our team. As an employee-owned company, Sentry Equipment believes that employee ownership makes a difference. Our employee-owners are dedicated to hard work, positive results and continual improvement and innovation to provide our customers the highest quality products and services.