Member Spotlight: Jay Howard

Meet Jay Howard, Senior Account Executive at KG Specialties

What do you do at your current firm?

At KG Specialties, I am in Sales. I do all phases of Branded Promotional Products – apparel, hard goods and all the fun stuff that someone can put a logo on! I’ve been with KG Specialties for three years, but in the industry over 30 years. I still enjoy what I do very much.

A number of clients have become good friends over the years. That has been great. This year, KG Specialties came on board as the Supplier Sponsor to SMPS Oregon. I am looking forward to getting to know members and learning how I can help.

What’s the best piece of advice you have ever been given?

When I started in the industry, I was very young. About my second year in sales, I was lucky enough to be mentored by an industry rock star. We’d meet every week for lunch and go over everything from the past week – what worked and what didn’t and why. I think what I took from that time was not everything goes right all the time. Stay on task, stay focused and good things will happen. Now, I’ve been around long enough that I try to share things I’ve learned.

What is one tool, technological or not, that makes your work day easier?

My cell phone! I’m on the move a lot and the ability to get email, send files and take calls ‘almost’ anywhere has allowed me to not be anchored to my desk. I am as mobile as I need to be!

What movie can you watch over and over again?

I am a movie lover – anything with a good story. But, here are some movies I can’t flip past: The Godfather 1 & 2, For Love of the Game, Rudy, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Vision Quest and The Breakfast Club (and a bunch more.)

What’s a recent book you read and enjoyed?

One thing COVID Quarantine has been good for is books. Here are a couple I’ve read recently and recommend:

  • David Goggins, Can’t Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds
  • Robin Sharma, The 5 AM Club

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