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ceo | fire chief
Hometown: Cornersville, TN
Since starting the company at a Plano, Texas kitchen table in 1990 with husband, Dave, automätik’s CEO, Kathy Sweet—affectionately known as the “Fire Chief”—has remained the “behind the scenes” force of automätik.
While Dave handled facilitating, writing, and client relations, Kathy assumed the formidable challenge of developing the company’s infrastructure from the ground up, including all aspects related to finance, human resources, operations, and, as her pseudo-title implies, putting out the occasional “fire” (figuratively speaking, of course; we have a strict “No Fire Bugs” hiring policy).
While she’s far too humble to admit it, Kathy’s success as a business leader is not by accident: with a B.A. in Marketing from The Ohio State University, Kathy held management positions with The Collection, Paul Harris, and Petite Sophisticate retail apparel purveyors, as well as American Greetings before establishing automätik. And, as any “Fire Chief” worth her salt, Kathy is gifted at recognizing, diagnosing, and solving issues and problems, and has an amazing ability to tactfully communicate in the “heat of the battle.”
automätik, in partnership with Kia Motors America, won a coveted Brandon Hall Group© gold award for excellence in the Best Advance in Creating an Extended Enterprise Learning Program category.
automätik’s very own Dave Sweet was nominated for PHOENIX Magazine’s inaugural Great 48.
Like most professionals who’ve been forced to sit for hours in a training session, Michael Thiel knows that likely every single employee in this situation would rather be elsewhere. As the executive vice president at Phoenix-based automätik, his job is to battle that feeling.