2008 10 Under 40 Awards
President | GTS | Portland, Ore.
One-word description of self: Resourceful
One-word description of the auto glass industry: Diverse
Favorite Web site: Wikipedia
Lesson learned the hard way: Technology moves so fast ... you have to be sure you constantly listen to your customers so you can focus on what is important and most relevant to them. Be continuously vigilant to avoid inventing solutions that provide little or no value.
TS President Mike Jones, 38, is "one of the rare individuals who effectively combines technical savvy with stratospheric business and people skills," says customer Doug Linderer, president of Go-Glass Corp., Salisbury, Md.
Jones first made his mark on the industry in 2002, when PPG Industries, Pittsburgh, tasked him with creating a new technology business unit to connect companies throughout the auto glass industry via electronic claims processing and product ordering.
The result was eBusiness provider Glaxis, which today enables more than 3,000 auto glass locations to electronically process claims with insurance companies and order parts from several of the industry's leading suppliers.
Building on that success, in 2005, Jones took the reins at GTS, a business-management software and services provider. "Mike was able to quickly ... establish a long-term vision for the company," says Tricia Carey, marketing coordinator. "He then influenced, motivated and enabled others within the company to contribute toward the effective pursuit of that vision. His relentless focus on the customer ensures that the products and services we offer meet the customer's goals of increased growth and profitability."
Jones agrees that his primary focus is "to serve our customers." To that end, GTS has added Internet marketing services, enhanced commercial glazing capabilities and the Microsoft Dynamics GP financial accounting package to its product and service offerings.
His biggest accomplishment at GTS is helping the software provider grow and diversify, Jones says. "We have built out the talent and capabilities of the company to better meet the changing needs of the auto and flat glass industry to ensure our customers can drive more profit," he says.
This customer-focused approach sets Jones apart, Linderer says. "He is both one of the most intelligent yet humble people in the industry today. It might be easy to overlook Mike as he is consistently singing the praises of his team while simultaneously putting the needs of his customers first. He is a refreshing rarity in an increasingly it's-all-about-me world."
True to character, Jones attributes his success in part to his peers. "Throughout my career in the auto and flat glass industry, I have had the great fortune of working closely with a significant number of glass company owners and many industry leaders," he says. "This gives me the opportunity to learn continuously about business, the market and leadership."
Outside of work, Jones enjoys spending time with his wife and two children. An Ohio State graduate, he also follows the Buckeyes religiously.