Stephen Schueler’s Career and Application For Company Growth
Stephen Schueler was inspired to set big goals at a young age when he had the opportunity to hear Lou Holtz, a famous American Football Coach, speak. Holtz’s speech told the story of how he was fired from his first job, and decided to write a list of 100 goals he wanted to accomplish before he died. Holtz went on to be a huge success and achieved all of his goals including winning the national championship for Football through this roadmap.
Schueler, who was sitting up high at the coliseum managed to get down to the podium after the speech to thank him and asked Holtz for his autograph. Holtz agreed and signed:
“Make it happen, Lou Holtz.”
Schueler kept that autograph and used it as inspiration to make it happen. Later that night, he went home and made a list of 100 goals he wanted to accomplish before 30. Fortunately, he accomplished the 97th goal on his 30th birthday. Hundreds of goals later, Stephen has enjoyed incredible success in his life. Besides working for some of the top corporations in the world, Schueler is helping shipping companies transition to green fuel making transportation cleaner for the environment.
With his successful career across industries, Stephen provides incredible insight into what makes a great business, leadership, how to set and achieve goals and create a positive global impact.
From Procter and Gamble, Microsoft, Maersk and Enerjen: Schueler’s Journey
Born in Cincinnati, Ohio, Stephen’s mother was a school principal for 45 years and his father worked at Standard Register for 32 years. He always had an entrepreneurial spirit; Schueler purchased his first stock at 12 years old, with the support of his grandfather. Stephen states that his parents were a significant influence on his life and work ethic. Schueler earned his degree in business from Miami University in Ohio.
Across the World With P&G
Schueler received multiple job offers after graduation but was excited to get an offer for his “dream job,” Procter and Gamble. P&G was founded in his hometown of Cincinnati, and he started working there with great pride. He worked his way up the organization in San Francisco, from sales rep, unit manager, and district manager while earning his MBA at San Francisco University.
Stephen Schueler moved back to Cincinnati where he continued to climb up the ladder at P&G. He was eventually sent to Buenos Aires to help launch their popular detergent, Ariel in the southern cone of Latin America. He learned what it was like to work as the underdog to an entrenched competitor. They succeeded, and P&G saw their market share jump from less than 2% to 24% during his two years.
He was then moved to Caracas, Venezuela which was the headquarters for all of Latin America. He was asked to help lead the sales and marketing strategy for the laundry business which included Mexico, Central, America, and all of South America. He traveled and worked across 18 different countries. He then moved to South Korea where he led the market organization helping launch a beauty and skincare brand called SK2. He considers this role to be valuable through the growth of his nonverbal leadership skills.
Schueler went on to lead the P&G Russia and Eastern European market business, which is the fifth largest business in the world with roughly 3.5 billion dollars in revenue. It was during his time there that Eastern Europe experienced the Recession of 2008-2009. While this was a difficult time for most companies, Stephen helped P&G increase their market share in the region. He learned the importance of government relations and stakeholder management, along with the value of the physical distribution. He learned how to manage to work across nine different time zones.
Microsoft and Maersk
Stephen returned home to Cincinnati, where he managed global retail operations until 2012. After 25 years at Proctor and Gamble, Schueler had the opportunity to join Microsoft as Corporate Vice President during a transformative period for the company. Schueler oversaw the successful launch of Xbox One, the Halo game franchise, Windows phone and Surface computer as the head of global retail sales and marketing.
After Microsoft, Stephen moved to Copenhagen, Denmark to become the Chief Commercial Officer of AP Moeller- Maersk, the largest shipping company in the world. His responsibilities included overseeing global sales and marketing to 50,000 customers worldwide, directly overseeing 384 offices across 114 countries and being the Chief Executive Officer for the Safmarine Shipping Line.
Enabling the Shipping Industry Transition to Greener Fuel
Since then, Schueler has become the Chief Executive Officer for Enerjen Capital, helping the shipping industry transition to cleaner fuel. Enerjen is helping shipping companies make the transition. Stephen’s extensive travels inspired him, as he has traveled and worked across 162 countries, he noticed the significant differences in progress that each country was making for the well-being of the environment and he sought to find a way to help countries improve their impact on the planet.
Effective January 1, 2020, the shipping industry will be required to change their fuel sulfur from 3.5% to .5%. As Stephen explains, “It’s the most significant positive change for the environment in the last 20 years. And I think it will be the biggest change for the environment for the next 20 years as the majority of the 51,000 global vessels change their fuel in one day.”
The fuel that is compliant with this new regulation is expected to increase in price into the January transition. Enerjen seeks to help companies hedge their fuel as they get closer to the deadline. Enerjen allows ship owners to lock in or participate at a lower price to protect them when their costs increase. This lower price is significant, according to Stephen, since the entire industry is “looking at a potential $30 to $50 billion increase in their fuel cost in 2020.” He is proud that the industry is transitioning to a greener fuel.
The company is seeking to help other industries shift to cleaner fuel as well. The airline industry is notorious for its pollution, so Enerjen started the transition to assist them in making greener choices. Today, Stephen Schueler works consistently to build Enerjen’s presence in the green market.