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Journey To The Top: Atlas Copco

The seeds of what would eventually grow into a robust career in the heavy equipment industry were planted when Scott Carnell was very young. His family owned a heating and air conditioning business where he learned about boilers, air conditioning systems, piping, electrical systems, concrete and carpentry – and he came away from the experience having learned invaluable life lessons.

“I grew up in a blue-collar family,” he says, “and got my start in the family business early in life. It was a situation where you went to work on the weekends, swept the floors, cleaned up and, along the way, you learned the simple jobs until you could do just about anything yourself – even at a very young age. I was very fortunate to work with my dad and grandfather. They were never like, ‘Hey, I’ve been here longer, so you have to do the garbage work.’ Instead, they had the attitude of, ‘As soon as you can do this job, you  can do something else.’”

 
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The value of teaching others is something that’s stuck with Carnell ever since.

“Regardless of who you are, teach every chance you can get, to guarantee long-term success,” he says. “If you’re teaching and people are learning, they’re doing things and they don’t need someone to watch over them. Pretty soon, they’ll be teaching someone else. Teaching others starts a chain reaction that benefits everyone.”

Considering the great experiences he had working in the family business, it’s no surprise that Carnell sought out something similar when it came time to choose a career path. After college, he accepted a job in sales and began his journey to the top.

“When I got ready to graduate college, I was really drawn to the opportunities that were similar to what I’d grown up with in the family business,” Carnell says. “My first job was in territory sales, then I worked as a sales manager at a small company before moving on to work in regional management on the manufacturing side in a role that involved business development, helping dealers and finding new ones . After that, I was a vice president of sales and marketing. Next, I was a business line manager for the Atlas Copco Portable Energy division. I then served seven and a half years as president of Atlas Copco Specialty Rental North America before accepting my current role as president of Atlas Copco Construction Equipment USA in 2016.”

Having worked in both the manufacturing and distribution sides of the construction equipment industry, Carnell sees them as two sides of the same very important coin.

“Dealers are driven to take care of customers directly, while manufacturers are driven to take care of dealers who take care of the end customer,” he explains. “As president of Atlas Copco Construction Equipment North America, the most important thing for me is paying attention to our customers and employees, setting the proper tone, doing things in the Atlas Copco Way, setting strategy to surpass our goals and constantly tweaking things to achieve those goals on a daily basis.”

The construction equipment industry was a great fit for Carnell, who enjoys seeing the results of what customers do with the equipment they buy or rent. Another of his favorite things about his involvement is having the opportunity to work for a well-regarded company like Atlas Copco.

“One of my favorite things about working in the construction equipment industry is getting a chance to see what you’re a part of,” Carnell says. “When you sell equipment, you’re involved with every facet of what happens in the country – whether it be building roads, using air to break things apart or blow things up, or sandblasting things to make them look better. You get a chance to not only participate in all of that, but really see the results. Atlas Copco is extremely well grounded. We’re always trying to improve because we honestly believe that there is always a better way. Regardless of what country you’re in, Atlas Copco is working to achieve our vision, be a leader, behave ethically and honestly and reflect our core values.”

Having worked his way to the top of the construction equipment industry, Carnell offers the following advice for others hoping to do the same:

“Take every opportunity there is to learn about business, products and customers – and make sure to watch and observe what’s going on around you. We’re always looking for folks who are observant, because if you’re observant, you’re paying attention to your customer, your surroundings and your competition.

“Make it your own personal responsibility to manage your career and don’t be afraid to take a chance. Don’t pass up that next job just because it doesn’t appear to be a step up or pay a tremendous amount of money. Take a look and ask yourself, ‘Will it make me a better, more rounded employee later?’

“Never forget that actions speak louder than words. As you move up in your own company, remember that people watch what you do every single day and emulate it. Don’t be one of those people who says, ‘We have all these rules and this is what you should do, but I’m going to do something completely different.’”

For more information on Atlas Copco USA, visit www.atlascopco.us. Atlas Copco USA is also on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube and Instagram.



Call Out: “Regardless of who you are, teach every chance you can get, to guarantee long-term success. If you’re teaching and people are learning, they’re doing things and they don’t need someone to babysit them. Pretty soon, they’ll be teaching someone else. Teaching others starts a chain reaction that benefits everyone.”

— Scott Carnell

 

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