As a Product Support Sales Representative (a.k.a. “PSSR”), James Burgess sells parts and labor to the customer on the job site. For many of our customers in the Fort Smith, Arkansas area, he is the face of Hugg and Hall. We had the pleasure to sit down with him as he celebrates being with us for 10 years!
1. Where were you born and raised? Where do you live now?
I was born and raised in Eufala, OK. When I was 22 years old, I left our home to go to college, earning my degree in Agriculture Education. I wanted to be a teacher!
After I graduated, I realized pretty quickly that I didn’t want to teach and became a salesman instead. Along the way, I made my way out here to the Fort Smith area.
2. How long have you been with Hugg & Hall? If you started in a different position, tell us how you got here!
Before I came to Hugg & Hall, I worked for a business selling uniforms. One of my customers at the time was Hugg and Hall. I am a salesman through and through and I sold myself to Hugg & Hall.
Chris Shields (Vice President of Product Support) gave me an opportunity to work here and I have to say, I have got the best job in the world. I am celebrating 10 years here on April 2nd!
3. What does a day in the life of a PSSR look like?
Most days, I am on the street or talking to customer before 7:30A.M. Typically I am walking in 10-15 doors a day to speak with our customers.
My goal is to always be the first one a customer calls. Sometimes, you can get upwards of 120 calls a day, and I gladly welcome all of them.
The work definitely ebbs and flows. Some days it’s slow and others there’s not enough of you to go around! More than anything, every day I sell value of what we here at Hugg & Hall bring to the table.
4. The best part, or your favorite thing, about working for Hugg & Hall?
In 10 years of working here, I haven’t ever had a day that’s duplicated itself. It’s different every day around here.
5. Do you have a favorite memory of your time here at Hugg & Hall?
My goodness, there are too many great moments I have had here to pick just one.
I will say this though, I love watching the process. It truly takes all of us to make the wheel turn here at Hugg & Hall. We all rely on each other and trust that each person is going to do their part all with the customer in mind.
6. What do you like to do in your free time?
Woodworking! Also, I just bought 57 acres and will be doing stocker cattle.
7. What is an interesting or random fact about you people may not know?
At one time, I paid the bills as a rodeo announcer.
8. Tell us your favorite quote and what it means to you.
“Life is on.” I’ve had to be still for a long time. I have gotten myself to where I can move and shake and I’m never gonna be still again.
What people are saying about James:
“When I first met James 10 years ago, I found out that equipment repairs were not, as James would say “his wheel house”. He went head-first into his new position wholeheartedly. He is quick to learn and knows what customer service is about. James has learned, and retained, what is needed in his job and is second to none in his performance.
He has indeed sold some unusual items over the years that are not related to equipment repairs, for instance, catchers masks for one of our poultry customers, step ladders (enough to reach the moon), pink trash cans, 800 lbs. of rock salt (snow storm for melting ice), stainless steel spaghetti colanders (to weigh chicken) and a host of other items. Our customers know if there is something they need, if anyone can supply it, James is the man to get it done.
James knows that we as a company have to make a profit, he also knows we have to be fair with the customer. He is the perfect mix of the guy in the middle in a marketplace where we are not the least expensive lift truck company in town. We are the best and I’ve heard him tell customers “There’s one thing you don’t get with the other guys, and, that’s James Burgess”. -Holand Purifoy
CONGRATULATIONS ON 10 YEARS, JAMES! We appreciate you!
To read more of our employee spotlights, check them out here!