Dream Job or Nightmare? An Interview with Mike Sinclair of Tum Yeto

           Aside from being a paid professional, I’m sure most skaters would like a job working for a skateboard brand. Sounds like a walk in the park.  Free product, dealing with skateboarding all day, and one would probably think there is minimal work involved.  It is skateboarding after all, how hard could it be?
              Now let’s picture yourself at an office opening an email so you can get some work done. You have to plan a trip, book hotels, line up demo’s, and make sure all the skaters on the team are prepared and ready to go.  Unfortunately, your email is filled up with hundreds of emails titled “Sponsor Me”.  Since you are in charge of managing the team, finding talent is one of your tasks and looking at these tapes is part of your job.  Yay.
              We had the chance to get a few questions to a very busy man, and we’re grateful he had the time to answer them.  I’d like to introduce to you Mr. Mike Sinclair, of Tum Yeto.
SMDM: Whats your name and what to you do?
Mike:Mike Sinclair and I work at Tum Yeto distribution.
SMDM: How long have you had the position?
Mike: I have been at Tum Yeto for 9 kick ass years.
SMDM:  What exactly does your job entail?
Mike: At Tum Yeto, it’s a very small crew so we all wear multiple hats. A typical week is schedule and planning-building the teams schedule for the upcoming month, emails, promos, organizing upcoming projects with the magazines, checking in with the riders, making sure everyone is happy, and checking in with sales to see what’s working or what’s not. Then it’s getting invoices paid from photographers and filmers, working on product ideas with the team, and getting them in front of production. More emails and a lot more calls and texts throughout the day. Helping flow kids become legit ams and help ams turn pro. Checking sponsor me’s daily…
SMDM: How many ‘sponsor me’ requests do you get a month? Is it mostly dm or email?
Mike: A month… let me think, I would say it’s probably about 100 each month if you include DM’s, emails & texts.

probably about 100 each month if you include DM’s, emails & texts” 

SMDM: How do they get your number? that must suck….

Mike: I’m not too sure. I think my email is on the toy site somewhere. My number is floating too.


SMDM: Have you sponsored from a DM?
Mike: From a DM? Nah never.
SMDM: Have you ever done a reverse DM, and reached out to someone?
Mike: Yeah, if I see something I like, I’ll reach out for sure.

SMDM: Do you get any kids who send the same footage numerous times?

Mike: Oh yeah, some keep sending the same stuff even if I have seen the footage and already politely declined. They will send it again in a few weeks for sure, just to be sure I haven’t changed my mind I’m guessing, and then send it again like we have never been in contact. It’s strange. 

“They will send it again in a few weeks for sure, just to be sure I haven’t changed my mind”

SMDM:What era of skating did you receive the most sponsor me requests?
Mike: Right now for sure.
SMDM: Why do you think that is?
Mike: I think now more than ever because you can reach out to anyone you want. You and I could DM the president of the United States of America if we wanted to or ask Eva Mendes to sponsor us if we felt like it. It’s weird times.
SMDM: Ever hook a kid up and have to boot them because they sucked?
Mike: Yes.
SMDM: Is booting a ‘kook’ a team decision or do you get to make the call?
Mike: If it’s a “kook” I don’t need permission, but if it’s someone that is already on the team and has kooked it we all discuss as a team and I have to make the call.
SMDM: Thanks Mike.
Please make sure to head over to www.tumyeto.com and buy something so Mike can continue to get paid to look at sponsor me videos, among other less important tasks….

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