Thrive Employee Spotlight: Robbie Luethold, Regional Vice President of Sales
Welcome back to another installment of our “Thrive Employee Spotlight” blog series.
Our featured Thrive Employee is Robbie Luethold, Regional Vice President of Sales.
In addition to his pivotal role driving Thrive’s sales and improving the customer experience, Robbie is also known for many talents, including playing the trumpet, surfing and rollerblading. Keep reading to learn more about Robbie!
Hi Robbie! Tell us about your role at Thrive as Regional Vice President of Sales.
My role at Thrive is to learn every day, create an atmosphere with my team where we love what we do, enjoy getting better every day, which in turn, results in an improved experience for our customers. They gave me a fancy title, Regional Vice President of Sales, but I believe my role is ensuring the employees around me love the environment they work in, translating into our team providing a better customer experience across the board. If we can accomplish this, revenue and sales should be the bi-product of the incredible culture we have here at Thrive.
Can you tell us about your background and how you came to Thrive?
I graduated from The College of New Jersey in 2004 with a degree in Marketing (which is code for “I don’t know what I want to be when I grow up.”) So here I was, the first job out of college in a sales role, selling copiers. In my delusional mind, this was going to be the “amuse-bouche” to my illustrious career. However, 17 years later, it would be the only place I would call home.
When it all began in 2004, copiers were analog, but quickly becoming digital printing and scanning devices. This led to much more interaction with IT and the network overall. As a result, many copier companies, including my company, began to provide Managed IT services along with the copiers. As technology evolved, I found myself gravitating towards IT solutions and wanting to learn more. Had I remained in an outside sales role, my stay may have been a few years shorter, however, the opportunity presented itself in 2015 for me to take a role as a sales manager.
Management unlocked a world of challenges far beyond anything I could have ever imagined in sales. For whatever reason, I loved it. My sales team was an incredible group, we were a family, and we all grew together, challenging each other through both good times and bad. In 2020, along with all the challenges that came from that year, my company began to pivot, resulting in a “reorganization” of sorts. Part of the reorganization resulted in a promotion for me to run the region I was a part of, taking over the role of my long-time boss, and friend, Rob Bain. He hired me in 2004, and I reported to him my entire career.
With all this change, Rob retiring and leaving my sales team which was like family, I started thinking that the timing is ideal for a more significant change. I hoped to find a company that was entirely focused on IT and cyber security. I researched the best companies in this space, and I connected with Rob Stephenson, who introduced me to John Holland. They say timing is everything. The timing was mutually beneficial for me to make a change, and Rob and John to fill a newly formed role at Thrive.
Where did you go to school or get training?
I went to The College of New Jersey (TCNJ) and received a B.S. in Marketing, which was far from my intended path or major. I invested my middle school and high school years in classical trumpet and musical theory and composition. After getting into some prominent music schools, my father, fearing I would forever be broke, chasing a dream of being the second chair in the New York Philharmonic, decided to sit me down and deliver a speech that only a father could… He meticulously and methodically broke down every expense in my life, month by month, year by year, decade by decade. By the end of it, I was so scared, I sold my trumpet for a guitar and surfboard, enrolled in TCNJ and walked on to the college golf team. This extreme deviation from all my life’s choices, had it happened 20 years later, would most certainly have been considered a mid-life crisis. Thankfully, I was 18 and everyone chalked it up to me being young and confused. Here I am, 8 months away from 40 and I can say without a shadow of a doubt that I am so thankful my dad gave me that speech. I also have no plans or desire to buy a convertible sports car.
What do you most enjoy about working for Thrive?
I enjoy the people and culture at Thrive. The employee-first mindset and the family-like atmosphere that welcomed me in with open arms was unexpected but so important for me. When you leave a company after 17 years, I don’t care how tough or confident you think you are, you are scared, and you have doubts and second thoughts on your decision. However, when you have a culture like Thrive and the support of such an incredible group of people, it’s only a matter of days before you realize the decision you made was perfect. What Thrive has is rare, and I am extremely proud to be a part of it.
Any recent exciting projects at Thrive that you can tell us about?
Right now, I am simultaneously working on two critical areas within our Mid-Atlantic region. First, with my outside sales team, we are meeting with new customers and discussing security strategies daily – with everything going on in terms of cyber security today, the opportunity to help organizations is tremendous. It’s been fantastic to work with this team and learn from their professionalism and consultative approach.
Secondly, I have had the privilege to work alongside one of our most recent acquisitions, The Apex Team. We have been laser-focused on transitioning Apex clients onto the Thrive platform and ensuring the absolute best customer experience. Acquisitions have many moving parts and while certainly, the customer’s transition is important, for me, my highest priority has been the employees — our new team. Fortunately for me, Apex already has an incredible family-like culture, coupled with talented individuals who are not only fitting in, but enhancing all Thrive has to offer.
What do you like to do in your free time?
My free time is spent in a few different ways. Playing golf, sometimes competitively, but mostly for fun with friends, as well as with my wife and kids who enjoy it enough to put up with the fact that “Dad loves it.”
The beach and surfing. The beach is a short walk away from where we live and has always been a part of our lives. I used to love to surf hurricanes, which seems like a good idea on the east coast because it’s the best waves, but after my daughter was born, I realized I was responsible for another human I decided that wasn’t such a good idea. Fortunately, my kids love it and I go out with them now, not in hurricanes — yet.
My daughter Ryleigh loves music and theater. She plays the trumpet and I have become the resident music teacher. I once again own my own trumpet, and we have been practicing her school music together for three years now.
My son Brendan loves hockey and plays on a travel hockey team. I think I am younger than I am and find myself practicing with him both on the ice, and of course, I also had to get myself a pair of rollerblades to relive the 90’s and show the kid that Dad still has it. The family has the over-under on the inevitable hospital visit from this behavior set at my 40th birthday which is fast approaching…they all bet the under.
Thanks, Robbie! When you are ready to start the Thrive band let us know!
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