Tina Schmitt enjoys people!
Tina Schmitt enjoys people. With almost twenty years in the propane/energy industry, Tina can confidently say, “Propane people are my people.” And it’s not just the people that draw her to the industry. Propane is a very rural fuel, which links back to her agricultural roots.
Agricultural roots in Kansas.
A Northeast Kansas person, through and through, Tina grew up in Wamego. She graduated from Kansas State University with a degree in Agricultural Economics and a specialty in Marketing. To this day, she still gets Kansas State football tickets every season and regularly spends time on the family farm.
Getting to know great people in the industry.
Getting to know clients and colleagues is something Tina enjoys. Working with clients daily and attending industry events has given her the firm belief that the propane/energy industry is filled with great people. Throughout her career, she has interacted with many of the same people as they moved into different roles or to different companies. As Tina put it, “People change jerseys (companies), but it’s the same people.” She believes one of the best things you can do for new people in your industry is to introduce them to the people you know.
Energy industry experience.
Tina’s introduction to the industry as a marketing analyst was very “asset focused” instead of people oriented. She started out working with a refinery from Oklahoma where the goal was to “turn” the inventory every 24 hours. The work was exciting, fast-paced, and challenging – with the phone potentially ringing all hours of the day.
Her ability to connect with people served her well. Some of her customers from the earliest days of her career still keep in touch with her. She rose through the ranks to become a Senior Marketing & Asset Manager.
When that company was purchased, their focus shifted, and that change affected the whole organization. At this point, Tina decided she needed a change too. She moved out of the energy industry for about two years.
Working with grain and other commodities.
She became an origination specialist working with grain and other commodities. Leaving the propane/energy field showed her just how special the industry was and how much she appreciated being a part of it. As Tina considered getting back into the industry, she remembered what a colleague told her when she called to say she was leaving: “You’ll be back. You have ethyl mercaptan in your veins.”
Getting back to energy – with Twin Feathers.
She had worked with Twin Feathers team members in her role as an originator and knew they were smart, competent people. This experience, plus meeting the owner, attracted her to the company. Soon after, she was meeting with a colleague at her current job who told her, “If you want to find a job you love, where you feel valued; find people who know you are capable and love you – and go work for them!” She left that meeting and called Twin Feathers.
Core work values.
Tina has been a Senior Commodity Advisor with Twin Feathers for seven years now. She excels at building relationships with her clients and believes one of the best things she can do for clients is help them understand their risks. This type of relationship involves a great deal of trust. That trust is something Tina does not take lightly. Her core work values are as follows: “I care about people. I care about integrity. And I care about seeing good people succeed.”
Working with clients.
In addition to engaging with clients, Tina also loves planning events. She planned the recent Heart of America Energy Symposium for Twin Feathers, which took place in September 2023. However, her favorite thing to do at Twin Feathers is supply planning for her clients.
Understanding her client’s business and putting together a plan that is a map for the year ahead is something she really enjoys. Using a client’s purchase and use history, she advises them in making a guide for the next year. All plans change, and when that occurs, Tina works with the client to find out what happened and how they can adjust. The reward for her is hearing from clients when they are ready to expand and realizing she is one of their first calls.
Outside of work.
Outside of work, Tina enjoys spending time with her family and is very involved with her children’s school. In fact, she is the chair of the school’s annual auction! She loves to cook, and of course, to cheer on the K-State Wildcats during football season. But she would probably tell you that whether at work or in her personal life, it’s really all about the people!