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Lisa Varga

By Linda MelonePublished: November 01, 2012

CEO Phoenix Energy Technologies, Irvine
Hot factor: Her firm is ranked No. 84 in Energy on Inc.’s 500/5000 and was named Company of the Year by CleanTech OC

Although she’s the CEO of a rapidly expanding company, Lisa Varga sometimes still finds it difficult to talk about her success.

“I’m a humble person by nature,” she says.

Her company’s success speaks for itself: Founded eight years ago, Phoenix Energy Technologies provides software and services to help manage energy use for companies with multiple locations. The software requires no on-site installation or new hardware, which allows for quick installation.
The firm was named Company of the Year by CleanTech OC, the county’s clean technology trade association. Inc. magazine ranked Phoenix No. 84 in Energy on its annual Inc. 500/5000, a list of the fastest-growing private U.S. companies. And last April, Phoenix was named Vendor of the Year by the Professional Retail Store Maintenance Association. These awards acknowledge a firm with professionalism and integrity, along with top leadership in the facilities management industry.
Varga says it hasn’t always been easy. “California is a tough place to be an entrepreneur. You have to know the business in general and factor that into your plan. But when you hire people from this area you’ll find they’re highly educated and driven.”
Varga believes in treating employees well, which results in a 2 percent employee turnover rate (the average turnover rate runs between 8 and 10 percent). “We do the right things for our employees.” She also takes pride in being able to run her company while balancing her family life with activities such as golf and snowboarding. “Every day I am grateful.”

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