McSparron was raised on a farm near Grandin, ND. and attended Hillsboro schools through freshman year, then moved on to Moorhead High for a year and back to Hillsboro for his junior year before squeaking out a diploma from Norman County West in Halstad, MN in 1985. Apparently, in all of that moving, McSparron missed ACT/SAT testing day, so he never applied for college. McSparron did, however, manage a Radio/TV Broadcasting diploma from the now-defunct School of Communication Arts in Minneapolis some time in the late 80’s. After a couple decades of crazy jobs and even crazier adventures, McSparron found himself back home, in Fargo, and couldn’t be happier!
What is your favorite thing about your professional life?
Each day, I get to have impactful and powerful conversations with some of the area’s best business leaders, plus I get to lend a hand in their innovation, their creativity and, hopefully, their fulfillment.
What are some unique facts about yourself?
I’m not sure there’s anything unique, or worth mentioning. I did live in Gatwick Airport for a few weeks in the fall of 1985. That’s unique, I suppose. Also, I may be the only person without a podcast.
What are some of your favorite things about the Fargo-Moorhead area?
People are generally and genuinely nice to each other. I would argue there is no place in America that consistently displays more goodwill, empathy and philanthropy than this community. I am very proud to call North Dakota home.
If you weren’t working in your current profession, what would you be doing?
Tough to say… Maybe eating a sandwich and watching some television.
What are some things you like to do in your spare time?
Being creative. Solving problems. Building things. I love to be outside, simply working around the farm. The list of projects is never-ending. I’m certain that I’ll end before the list does.
What are some books or podcasts you recommend people check out?
I read The Shining in 1977 and Traction in 2015. Beyond that, I don’t read books, nor do I listen to podcasts. Quite frankly, I never learned to read at a rate I felt effective enough to justify the time that’s required to finish most books. If one comes highly recommended, I’ll give it a 30-minute scan, but I never commit hours or days to it. Podcasts? I’ve heard of them. Throughout the day, I absorb a lot of information from a lot of sources, but none of which takes more than 15 minutes. I’ve always gotten more from living the chapters of my life, rather than reading them.
If you could change or impact one thing in our business community, what would it be?
I would like to see greater and expanded opportunities for mentorship between our senior business leaders and our start-up community, and frankly, amongst our entire business community. Everyone has something they can teach and everyone has something new to learn. Let’s do some more of that.
Why work with Fargo INC?
Mike is dedicated to our community and committed to the success of this magazine. Plus, if you’re reading this… It obviously works!
What are three business tips you can give?
Have a group. Have a system. Have a coach. Call me, I’m happy to expand on that.