Interviewer: Can you give me a little bit of background about yourself?
Joe Sousa: I used to repair Foosball tables for a living until the work dried up… ha. No, I’ve been an electrical contractor since 1998. I’ve been in the industry since 1991 and so — yeah — 22 years in the trade and 15 years with a business.
I: Describe your role in the electrical industry when you came up with your invention?
JS: The very first time I thought about it — I was actually a 2nd or 3rd year apprentice and thought, “there’s gotta be a better way,” ha. I was ripping out a bunch of staples on a job with my side cutters or angle pliers, whichever you want to call them. I had the idea to make something to pop staples out for myself. I started noodling with some weird shapes of steel and it just kind of faded away. It was something I thought about every once in a while over the years, and then I finally decided to get serious about it and make something that would actually work and could possibly work.
I: What was the process like from initial prototype to finished product?
JS: It usually involved some cold beer and tinkering in my garage with different design ideas. The process was kind of painful because not knowing anything how tools are manufactured and different types of steel and that. It took me awhile to realize you can’t make tools like that out of mild steel, you need to make something out of hardened steel to get the job done properly.