Just a Minute: Don Sothman

Company: Manta Ray, Inc.; designer and manufacturer of carton-taping machinery
Location: N60 W16171 Kohler Ln., Menomonee Falls
Number of employees: 4
How you describe your job: Overall responsibility to build the company, from designing to cleaning the bathroom
Typical workday: Arrive 6:45 a.m.; each day’s work is different; leave between 8 and 9 p.m.
How you motivate your employees: Trust, share, care
Where you get your motivation from: High interest in delivering value
Biggest challenge for your firm in the coming year: Increase customer awareness of how working with our firm can be a benefit to theirs
Kernel of advice for small business owners and managers: Remember that a business exists to serve the customer, the employees and the investors
One factor to which you owe your success: Persistence
First job: Sweeping a shop floor, 11 years old
Favorite magazines: Insight audio tapes
Favorite restaurant: Etzel’s; but now there are very many good ones to choose from

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