Born: Youngstown, Ohio
Education: Bachelor’s degree in economics and management, Hiram College, Hiram, Ohio; MBA, University of Detroit Mercy
First job: My dad was sales manager at a Chevy dealership in Boardman, Ohio, and I washed cars there from the age of 10. I did some minor mechanical work in the body shop, as well.
What is the best business lesson you’ve learned?
Be consistent and persistent. And be relentless in moving toward your goals.
What traits or skills are essential for a business leader?
Experience is huge. You can never have enough experience. I’m glad that I’ve been through sales, purchasing, manufacturing, and the low and midlevel tiers of management. That is a tremendous education to receive on the job.
What universal truth have you learned about leadership?
You need to earn your right to be a leader. People can anoint you as a leader, but they’re not going to follow you unless you earn it.
What is your definition of success?
Meeting or exceeding the goals of the task at hand in whatever you’re trying to accomplish and knowing what those goals should be. If you bat .300 in baseball, you’re a hell of a hitter. If you bat .300 in business, you’re not so good.