Mi-T-M’s January 2017 Dealer Spotlight: Swift Industrial Cleaning Solutions
Lyle Swift often yearns for his former way of doing business. “Somebody should close the internet and let us get back to work the old-fashioned way,” he jokes.
The president of Swift Industrial Cleaning Solutions started his Cincinnati-area pressure cleaning business in 1999. He misses the days of dropping in to see his customers, shooting the breeze, and providing personalized service. Swift says that one-on-one type of doing business changed after 911.
“We can no longer go to the back door and talk to Joe and check on the machine,” he explains. “Now we go to the front door, talk to the front desk, and try to get to Joe . . . except Joe doesn’t work there anymore and they no longer give out names or phone numbers.”
But Swift has changed with the times. With his outgoing personality, he’s never met a stranger. And he’s thrilled no two days at work are the same.
“The great thing about this industry is that I can sell to a hog farmer in the morning, get barn yard debris on my feet, stop by the office, change clothes, and go see a VP of Engineering in the afternoon,” he says.
Swift and his staff have more than 90 years of shared experience servicing industrial pressure washers and wastewater systems.
Swift Industrial serves a wide variety of industries—including manufacturing, transportation, aerospace, construction, recycling, food service, painting/resurfacing, and industrial cleaning contractors—and sells, services, and rents many types of equipment.
“Meeting the needs of industry with quality and service has always been our slogan,” he said. “I guess I have also looked at it as, ‘It’s not the big that eats the small, but the fast that eats the slow.’ After all, we are Swift.”
Ohio customers appreciate the outstanding customer service and high-quality equipment they find at Swift Industrial. The company has cemented its lines in both pressure washers and parts washers, and has carried the same lines for many years.
“This helps our current and potential customers realize the stability we offer,” adds Swift.
Things have changed quite a bit since Swift began his company 17 years ago. Back then he didn’t even have a forklift or dock, so he contracted with a local lumber yard to drop off his orders. He’s proud of the partnerships he’s formed, especially with Mi-T-M.
“A small company like mine couldn’t ask for better support,” Swift says. “Their quality is second to none. Having the floor plan has helped keep machines in stock, where many times you can’t sell what you don’t have. Their warranty support is better than any company I have worked with.”
Swift is used to hard work and believes it has been the key to his company’s success.
“I first climbed on the tractor solo 52 years ago, and was told to come home when the field was done,” Swift says.
But he’s ready for and heading toward retirement. An avid hunter, Swift loves spending time in the Rocky Mountains on a horse. He also enjoys time on the links.
When it comes to retirement, heading that direction and getting there are two different things. He’s grateful his daughter, Brandy, is working and learning the business from the office out to the service bay.
“In today’s economy, everybody is complaining of no jobs, and it is so hard to find quality help,” says Swift. “They either want the rainbow, or have no experience or both.” Swift’s name is on all his trucks and he must consider how employees represent his business. Training and retention are also ongoing issues.
Given these concerns, his retirement will most likely include taking off just September and October. He’d like to spend that time in the mountains; in the summer, he wants to stop work about 3 p.m. and play golf.
“Other than that, what else is there to do but work?” he asks. “It keeps the mind going, and for those of you that know me, that in itself, is a lot of work,” he quips.
Based in Cleves, Ohio, Swift Industrial offers a complete line of industrial equipment, including portable generators, pressure washers, portable heaters, water treatment systems, jobsite boxes, air compressors, and wet/dry vacuums.