By Tim Priebe
April 25, 2024

Professional Q&A: Mike Crandall

Read about Mike Crandall’s journey from the corporate world to a meaningful career in coaching.
Edmond resident Mike Crandall in his Sandler Office in Oklahoma City (Photo: Brent Fuchs)

Meet Mike Crandall, a business leader and Edmond resident who wears multiple hats. At the helm of Sandler Custom Growth Solutions, Mike dedicates his expertise to coaching, consulting, and training in leadership, management, and sales development. In addition to steering his own organization, he also plays a pivotal role in nurturing sales professionals as the founder and current board president of the Oklahoma Professional Sales Association. Having known and worked with Mike for well over a decade, it’s my honor to dive into Mike’s career with him.

Q: Do you live in Edmond, work in Edmond, or both?

A: I have lived in Edmond since 2003, although our physical offices are in Oklahoma City.

Q: Where did you grow up and go to school? 

A: I was born in Saint Paul, Minnesota, and my dad was in the military, so I had the opportunity to live in many different places as I was growing up.

The high school I graduated from was the tenth school that I went to, which was in Bellevue, Nebraska. Then, I got my bachelor’s degree at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln, Nebraska.

Then, after we ended up here in Edmond, I got a master’s degree from Oklahoma Christian University.

Q: What did you do before Sandler Custom Growth Solutions?

A: I had about twenty years in the corporate world, where I worked for various organizations. Most of them made stuff that was sold into construction: tools, equipment, building materials, engineered building products, and more.

Throughout that time, I always had different roles, but there were always two responsibilities: growing people and growing money or revenue.

Q: How did you get involved with Sandler?

A: It’s always a bit of an interesting story to share. Unlike most people who become a Sandler coach after being Sandler clients, I wasn’t introduced that way.

A very good friend of mine called me out of the blue one day in August of 2009. He asked what I knew about Sandler, which at the time was absolutely nothing. He was working for a company that was beginning a Sandler growth journey, and he described what they were doing.

He told me it was a 36-month starting point to their journey. I was really blown away and taken aback.

So I started doing research, and that’s how I was introduced to Sandler and began my steps and the journey to become a Sandler coach.

Q: What do you like most about your job?

A: The personal success stories that we hear from people. Everyone comes to us because they want to become a better business owner, leader, manager, salesperson, or fundraiser. But my favorite things are when I hear personal stories like, “Mike, I’ve got a better relationship with my spouse because of what I’ve learned,” or “I’ve got a better connection with my siblings,” or “my kids,” or something else.

A lot of times, it gets really specific, like, “I finally had the courage to do something I’d never had the courage to do before, like stand up to somebody who wasn’t nice to them in their personal lives.”

Q: What’s something you’re passionate about in your personal life?

A:  One of the things that I’m really passionate about is our family. One of the things we love to do is ski, especially my wife and I. So, downhill snow skiing as well. Water skiing is okay, but it’s a far second to downhill snow skiing.

And then from the nonprofit world, anything that has to do with helping people that don’t have the ability to help themselves or connect them to a faith walk that maybe they’re struggling with.

Q: What do you like about Edmond?

A: There are a couple of different things. Originally, we ended up in Edmond because of the schools.

What I like now that my kids are out of school is the broad diversity of types of lives and lifestyles in Edmond. We used to live in a close-knit, super-close-house neighborhood where everybody was on top of each other, which was great for that part of our life.

Now we live up by Lake Arcadia on acreage, still in Edmond, and have a great neighborhood. We have chickens, and we get deer in our yard every day. And we’re still in the middle of Edmond. It’s very cool.

Q: What is your number one tip for other professionals, either for work or life in general?

A: If I have to boil that down to just one tip, it’s investing in yourself.

When most people hear the word invest, they think about dollars. That might be part of it, but it’s also time and energy.

I was introduced early in my life to the concept of tithing at church, which is the concept of giving 10 percent back to the church in church terms. But if you want to become better in your professional life, you should be tithing in your own development, meaning that a percentage of your energy, time, and resources should be going back into you.

If you’re not investing in yourself and becoming better, you’re probably not going to have anybody else invest in you, either.

Subscribe to Email Updates


Get Edmond Business news in your inbox.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

About Tim Priebe

Tim is a public speaker, author, publisher of Edmond Business, and the owner of Backslash Creative. He helps businesses that are worried they don’t have the expertise or time required to invest in doing their own digital marketing. He helps them plan where and how much to invest and often helps execute the plan.

Tim started the Edmond Business online magazine in May 2020 to fill a need in the community when The Edmond Sun shut down and stopped publishing their monthly magazine, The Business Times.