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VP Josh Braendle Selected By Cannata Report as Young Influencer 2023

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Static Control Jun 28 2023
The portion below was shared with permission by The Cannata Report. Read the entire article here:

Meet the young generation leaders driving their organizations forward.

Josh Braendle, vice president of business development, Static Control Components, Inc. – Age: 38

Josh Braendle is a bit of a contradiction. “I’m in the print industry, and I don’t have a printer at my house,” he laughed. He knew early on that he wanted to pursue a career in business and got an associate’s degree in sales and business management at Pittsburgh Technical College. However, it wasn’t until his college internship at Static Control Components, based out of Raleigh, North Carolina, that he thought about the copier industry.

Josh spent four very educational years as an account executive with Static Control Components, learning how to meet with clients, understand their business needs, and match them with the right solutions. Static Control focused primarily on components then, so Josh’s clients were the manufacturers who took the company’s products and used them to assemble finished goods.

He took his initial experience at Static Control Compoents and ventured out into the wider business world, trying his hand at sales and business development at a series of other companies before one day getting a call that would bring him right back where he started, but in a very different role.

“I was approached by Bill Swartz, the son of Ed Swartz, who founded Static Control, to come back and take on a transition from being a component leader to a finished goods cartridge production leader,” recalled Josh. “I came back to spearhead that unit, and here we are 10 years later.”

Today, Josh manages a team of 15 sales reps across the United States and Canada. His team has a dual focus, supporting and growing Static Control’s traditional component manufacturing business on one side, and developing the finished goods cartridge sales opportunities on the other side, reaching out to independent dealers to talk technology and office products.

He’s seen a lot of change in the industry in just the past decade, particularly with Static Control’s educational clients that have converted rapidly to digital workflows, even on the studenJosh_cropped.jpgt level.

“I look at certain school districts with a lot of people using tablet formats now instead of take-home homework like I was accustomed to in every single class, multiple sheets a day; there was significant page volume,” said Josh. “During the pandemic, a lot of those schools transitioned to the tablet. Once you’re on the tablet, you’re not going to convert back to a paper format.”

A more conservative, more traditional-minded executive might go astray trying to turn back the clock and get everybody printing out everything they work on like in the old days, but that’s where Josh’s youth gives him an advantage and perspective. It does no good to try and fight progress, and you never win that game anyway. His approach is not to oppose, ignore, or push back against change, but to accept it and adapt. A tech sale is still a sale, and print is far from dead.

“Overall, the page volumes are still significantly high throughout the market, and there’s still billions of dollars that get thrown into this industry year in and year out,” he said. “There’s always going to be a home for print. It just looks different year over year.

It’s not just the clients that are changing. When Josh first started in this industry, trade shows were the name of the game. What was once a packed year-round calendar of face-to-face events has shrunk to a few smaller regional conferences. Once, there were a convenient way to connect with clients from all over the country, but now Josh and his team have had to be more proactive to maintain that personal connection.

“Connecting with customers face to face has always been one of my faves and one of the things I love to have my team engage with,” he said. “As soon as we had customers willing to see us, we were seeing them and able to rapidly re-engage customers. That was a necessity for us in order to rebound the way we did post COVID.”

To do all this, Josh needs a team as aggressive and adaptive as he is, people who are motivated by success and have a strong drive to win, no matter the game.

“I was an athlete growing up, and building a culture of winning is one of my biggest things,” he said. “Building a team out, it’s really about making sure you fit in the culture side of it, because without culture, you can lose pretty quickly. We’ve done a good job of building our team based on the winning culture premise.”

A lot of the work of building a team comes after selecting the players, forging connections, offering recognition, and sharing success. Anyone can make it if they want to, but Josh does find that his best team members have a lot of things in common.

“I’m always looking for people that are outgoing, people that are hungry and want to do better for themselves,” he said. Success breeds success, so the productive years Static Control has been enjoying recently certainly don’t hurt his recruitment efforts.

“We’ve had some phenomenal growth year over year,” said Josh. “We have a full head of steam, and we’re excited. We have an energized group that continues to stay in the field and be engaged with customers week in and week out. Everybody’s happy.”

With everything that’s changed and with so much growth on his own part, it’s hard sometimes for Josh to believe this is still the same company he started with as a fresh-faced twenty-year-old, the ink still drying on his degree.

“Static Control, for the majority of its existence, was a family-owned company, so the majority of the people that I worked with when I was 20 years old are still here today,” he said. “They knew me way back when and 18 years later, we’re still firing away.”

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