Mike spent his career working for startup companies and launching his own businesses, including the following experiences between 1974 and 2013:
- Invested in and managed one of the nation's first Pier 1 Imports franchise operations in Mt. Pleasant, which continues to operate under new ownership in Saginaw, Michigan.
- Started private food service and equipment rental operations targeting guests at Maho Bay Eco-resort on St. John in the U.S. Virgin Islands, where he also opened a dive shop with a partner.
- Acted as national marketing director for the Vermont Teddy Bear Company, from early-stage funding until three years prior to its 1993 IPO.
- Developed and executed a diversification strategy for a video development firm serving major national textbook publishers. He bought the firm in 1998, and as LEARNet Multimedia, LLC created some of the corporate communication industry's first multi-media tools for state, national, and international clients.
- Grew an 8-county state grant into a statewide self-employment program for persons with disabilities, which between 2000 to 2013 provided consulting services over 1,000 clients of the Michigan Rehabilitation Services Agency and U.S. Veteran Affairs Vocational Rehabilitation Services—approximately 600 of which successfully launched businesses.
Mike, who has has taught at least one entrepreneurship course each semester since 2000, joined the faculty full time in 2013 and taught classes for the departments of Management, Marketing, Business Information Systems, and Entrepreneurship. He earned both his Bachelor of Science in Marketing (1986), and MBA (1996) from Central Michigan University, and proudly claims that he "bleeds Maroon and Gold."