NFIB Local Member: Craig Carrel of Team 1 Plastics

Date: March 27, 2015

Small business owner Craig Carrel tells us how he and his business partner Gary Grigowski started their own plastics molding company in 1987 and why they work with NFIB.

Name: Craig Carrel

Business: Team 1 Plastics,

Location: Albion,

Employees: 70

Job title: President
and co-owner

How did you become a small business owner and why? 

I had always wanted to own my own business from being a teenager. When I went to the University of Utah and majored in chemical engineering, I also took some business classes like accounting, marketing and classes like that thinking I might need those. When I went to work for my first job out of college with a big plastics company called Celanese and I was down in Texas doing engineering work in a plant, but I knew I needed to get some sales experience. After a couple years there, I was able to get transferred up to their Detroit sales office. I was selling plastics to the automotive industry. While I was there I met my two partners who help me start the business. We were working together at the same company. I have an equal partner right now who is active in the business, Gary Grigowski. Him and I had started talking about maybe getting into running a plastic molding company. 

What advice would you give other small business owners? 

I think some of my advice is that the key of to owning a small business is to not let it take over your life. At the beginning, it has to take over your life because it’s a matter of survival. I think one of our objectives has always been to build a strong enough team and have a business that can support me not having to be there 24 hours a day, seven days a week. 

Why did you join NFIB? 

We joined NFIB probably within our first year or two. It’s one of the organizations I’m proud to be a member of. I think the way they represent small business is the true small business organization. I love how you vote and that the agenda is based on a super majority by of the members for the direction. Every member’s vote is the same, and I just think that’s great. I’ve become more active at the state level for NFIB, too. It’s really a great organization. It really, truly represents the needs of small business. I just joined the Leadership Council and went to my first meeting last month. 

What do you like to do off the clock? 

Well I like spending time with family and friends. One of my favorite things I do which I’m going to be doing next week is snow ski. I’m going out west with my son and a friend. I try to ski as much as I can and enjoy the winter that way. 

Related Content: Small Business News | Michigan

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