"It's important to be a disrupter in the community and to make sure that women feel supported and that they can accomplish anything."
Megan Spruit is a huge fan of West Michigan. She recently took over as president of Grand Rapids Metrology—a fifth-generation, family-owned business founded in Grand Rapids in 1922. At 32 years old, the Grand Rapids native has an impressive educational background, holding a bachelor's degree in International Management from Butler University and an M.B.A. from Grand Valley State University.
With her father being the CEO of Grand Rapids Metrology, Megan always knew she had to work hard to excel within the company—especially being in an industry that's typically male-dominated.
That didn't deter her from pursuing a leadership role in her family's company.
"Women bring such a unique perspective and dynamic to business and it's so critical to have that diversity in the workplace and women serving on leadership teams."
West Michigan Woman recently learned a bit more about this West Michigan Woman.
Hearing about a company having roots that extend five generations back is rare and impressive. Did you grow up learning all about Grand Rapids Metrology and the science of measurement?
Oh absolutely! I spent my summers growing up cleaning and washing trucks, sweeping the garage and doing some admin work and filing—I definitely got no special treatment and did lots of the grunt work. I really did grow up as part of the Grand Rapids Metrology family (known as Grand Rapids Scale Company at the time) and some people who still work here with us remember those days well.
Did you always know you'd end up working in the field that you do?
I went to school and moved to Chicago thinking I'd have a career in something else completely. When it came down to moving back to West Michigan six years ago and joining Grand Rapids Metrology, it was something I felt was right and really wanted to do. This position was never something that was promised to me and I luckily never felt any pressure from anyone to pursue it, but I'm glad I did. Working with family presents its own set of unique challenges sometimes, but it also offers a tremendous network of support. I'm lucky to have a great partner in business who also happens to be my dad.
What do you hope to accomplish as president of Grand Rapids Metrology?
We've been in Michigan for a very long time—almost 100 years—and since we've expanded what we do, we've been able to tap into a broader customer base. I would love to be able to have a reach outside of Michigan and really be the premier choice for measurement solutions in the entire Midwest, expanding our reach while maintaining our customer service and quality to the highest standards.
What advice can you give to other women who want to be successful in male-dominated fields, like you?
Be humble enough to ask questions, use your resources and talk to people who know more than you—this is something that in particular really helped me along the way. Someone once told me that when you're in a leadership position, you should never be the smartest person in the room; surround yourself with a really good team of people and you'll always be learning and getting better.
In all of my business classes, I was always in the minority. You sort of start to think as a woman, that you almost have to compete with each other to fill those few spots offered to women—and that's just not the case. It's easy for girls to compete with each other, but women empower one another. We can have as many women in leadership as we want and we should really be lifting each other up.
What do you do for fun in West Michigan?
As much as I appreciate traveling, summer in Michigan is my favorite! I love being by the lake, riding my bike, going for hikes—doing anything outdoors. I also really enjoy reading and balancing books that are fun with ones that focus on professional development to keep my brain sharp. Cooking and spending quality time with my family is also something I always am grateful for.
Written by Sarah Suydam, Staff Writer for West Michigan Woman.