Education: I did not graduate from college.
I have about two years ending at Georgia State, but I don’t have a degree. Because of that, I was very insecure about what I didn’t know, so I’ve tried to do everything that I can to understand the principles. I’ve had a professor from Georgia State that I initially paid to teach me all the MBA stuff, and he’s stayed on for the last 30 years and is on our board and is vice chairman of our company. I’d say from a business standpoint, I’m as educated as anybody, but I don’t have the college degree.
What has been your biggest challenge?
I think the biggest challenges over the years is not only recruiting, training and retaining, but growing managers, especially as the company gets larger. The biggest need we have is you hire a good salesperson, you train them, they become great, and then you want to make them a manager to train and lead other people. That’s a chasm that’s hard to cross. We’re going to put together the Jackson Healthcare College to help them grow to be businesspeople.
What’s one of the best lessons you’ve learned?
One of the reasons I’ve been pretty successful is I believe the way you succeed is getting up one more time than you fall down. It’s not how you fall, but how you pick yourself back up. I’ve been pretty resilient, and I will not give up.
What’s your favorite board game?
A long time ago, it used to be chess and Stratego, so they tend to be strategy games. Now, it’s backgammon and poker and crossword puzzles. I do stuff on the computer just to keep my mind going as I’m watching TV.