Co-Owner of Safeside Tactical discusses importance of Junior Achievement

ROANOKE, Va. - Mitchell Tyler discovered his love of business at a young age.

"I printed and cut out my own business cards when I was nine for my first made up company. I did that until I was about 14 or 15 and I actually started doing DJ services." said Tyler.

Flash forward to Tyler's high school days at Roanoke Catholic School and that's when the now successful business man learned the logistics of operating a business successfully.

"Right about that same time I was a sophomore in high school and the Junior Achievement program had a class at Roanoke Catholic School. As part of our economics program we had a full semester of Junior Achievement," said Tyler.

During that program he and his fellow classmates made gourmet spice packages and sold them through the school and to family and friends.

Mitchell Tyler was President of the company.

He said, "We had stock, got a check at the end of it and it was really a neat experience that took maybe what I was doing informally with my sound business and really put some education behind it."

He currently co-owns Safeside Tactical which is a firearms retailer with a strong focus on the training aspect of firearm use and safety.

"This is probably the fourth company I have started and ran over the last 15 years," said Tyler.

He goes on to say, "I've done verything from music production to CD/DVD authoring for real estate companies and I spent about six years doing home automation systems, security and surveillance systems. Kinda as the real estate market changed back in 2010/2011 I got more into commercial and what I found was I had the time."

He began Safeside Tactical back in 2012.

"I had time on my hands so my brother and I began this company in 2012 as kind of a side hobby and a couple day a week project. It's just grown very rapidly over the last four years to where we are today with almost 35 employees here and over 20 thousand square feet of space that we have to maintain," said Tyler.

According to Tyler, Junior Achievement helped prepare him to own and operate all of those businesses.

"A lot of people have the dream or have something they are interested in and want to do it, but I really feel like the Junior Achievement experience that I had as a sophomore in high school really set me on the path to understanding the inter workings or the behind the scenes of what it takes," said Tyler.

He goes on to say, "It's not just your product or your service. There's this whole machine that needs to be working in the background that keeps you growing, keeps you working."


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