Phil Keil’s passions are centered on providing value and giving back, whether through volunteer efforts or his day-to-day work.
Developing a diverse skill set — through a range of experience that includes sales, military, engineering, supply chain management and entrepreneurship — has allowed him to do that in a variety of ways.
For the past year, Keil has supported the mergers and acquisitions business of Zweig Group, a media, publishing and consulting company for the architecture and engineering industry. The firm’s M&A business doubled revenue in 2016 (over 2015), and Keil’s “discipline and dedication” to clients certainly contributed, his supervisor said.
“Zweig Group is a really entrepreneurial firm with a lot of [potential to] help companies grow their value, and that is a really attractive thing for me,” Keil said.
Keil graduated high school in Iowa in 2005, then served in the Air Force for five years. He chose to pursue a college education at the University of Arkansas, graduating in 2014 with degrees in physics and chemical engineering.
After that, he spent the next few months managing several multimillion-dollar improvement projects for Dow Chemical Co. in Louisiana. A desire to “accomplish more and give back” led him back to Northwest Arkansas in 2015. For the following year, he worked in supply chain management for Keurig Green Mountain, while at the same time pursuing an MBA in entrepreneurship and innovation from the UA, a degree earned in May 2016.
Keil is also engaged in helping historically disadvantaged groups end the cycle of poverty. He founded a company related to the endeavor — also while pursuing his MBA — and won money in a pitch contest to support the organization.
“We’re not sure if it’s a nonprofit or what the organizational structure is, but we’re going to tackle these issues with market-based solutions,” he said.
For the immediate future, Keil is getting married this month. And there are “really cool things” on the horizon at Zweig Group.
As for long-term goals? Stay tuned. “I have pivoted so many times, and life has taken me in completely different directions,” he said. “It’s an adventure, it’s a journey and it’s all exciting.”