Lanz Fritz

What is your job title, and what does that position entail?

President. I work with the executive team for Olympus Controls to develop strategies, goals and plans. One of my primary roles with the team is to drive execution of our action plans to meet/exceed our goals – hold the team, and their respective teams, accountable. I’m currently responsible for most of the high level contract review, negotiation and legal discussions. I also work with our parent company, AIT, on several issues and initiatives.

How long have you worked at Olympus, where did you come from? A little history of how you got involved with Olympus?

I’ve been with Olympus since April 2015. Scott Hendrickson, former founder/owner, and I had a common contact in his Vistage group (CEO Peer Program). Scott asked the group if anyone had a CFO they’d recommend and our common contact recommended me. At the end of 2018, Scott promoted me to President.

What do you like best about working at Olympus?

It’s a combination of the people at Olympus, interesting and exciting automation industry, and future growth we’re expecting and planning for.

Describe a little of your past history.

After graduating from Claremont McKenna College I became an auditor at Deloitte & Touche in Los Angeles and later moved to Portland where I worked for Grant Thornton. I knew public accounting was not for me, so I went to work for a startup, Stormwater Management as the VP of Operations and Finance. Ten years later, we sold the company and I became the COO of the Stormwater Division for the billion-dollar parent company. I left a couple years later to start my own Contract CFO consulting business working with small to midsize companies. That’s how I eventually found the opportunity at Olympus.

Describe some of your hobbies – what do you like to do outside of work?

Outside of work it’s all about my immediate family. I spend as much quality time as possible with my daughters Kate and Lauren, and my wife Karen (who is also my best friend). It doesn’t really matter what the activity is – road trip, paddle boarding, concert, dinner and a movie – just that we’re together. Also, I hit the gym every morning before work. I don’t actually like working out, but I do like how it makes me feel the rest of the day.

What are some key lessons you have taken from your career thus far?

Don’t pick the fly shit out of the pepper (focus on the big picture)

Always hire people smarter than you (they make you look smarter than you are)

Walk with a purpose (strolls are for weekends/vacation)

Learning from a mistake is like earning a diploma (just don’t earn the same diploma twice)

What is one thing your customers might find surprising about you?

I’m a do-it-yourselfer.  After spending the majority of my week at a computer, it’s nice to get my hands dirty on some home projects. I take care of my own yard, install sprinkler systems, change brakes and flush fluids in cars, wash windows, clean gutters… There’s a certain satisfaction from DIY projects I just can’t get from creating a spreadsheet!