Meet Sales Engineer Chad CalvertAshley
Meet Chad Calvert
Chad Calvert wanted to come back home. He’d spent nearly 17 years in the power generation market, dealing with carbide and ceramic for mostly coal power plants. Seeing the downward trend in coal power, Chad took a sales job with a software company but he didn’t love it because that job didn’t have anything to do with hard materials. Chad wanted to go back to what he knew and loved and found that opportunity with GLE Precision in the summer of 2019.
“It kept me in a world that I was familiar with working with carbides, ceramics, steel specialty metals. The capabilities behind what GLE does, I was very impressed with what they do and how they do it,” Chad says.
Chad works as an outside sales engineer from his home in Missouri. He travels about 65 percent of the time, getting in front of previous customers to explain how GLE can help in ways they may not have realized and seeing new clients who may be struggling with difficult problems.
All the Experience
In the world of custom work, finding new clients always matters and face-to-face interaction can help tip that scale, fellow sales engineer Nathan Binder says. Chad makes that contact and relies on his coworkers at headquarters to prepare a quote and his own knowledge and experience to make the sale.
“There’s a lot that Chad has to know,” Nathan says. “There can be two parts that are almost identical but one little detail on them means that we have to do it a totally different way or one little detail can be the reason that almost nobody else can do it and a customer has to come to us.”
Chad is a critical part of the management team’s decision to be more aggressive about growing the business instead of being satisfied with steady growth. Customers used to find GLE — and they still do — but now Chad is also finding those customers, such as a bullet manufacturer looking for a nose punch.
The team knew it would be hard to find someone like Chad who has a broad technical understanding, people skills and likes to travel for work.
“There are a lot of salespeople out there but we weren’t looking for your traditional salesperson,” general manager Clint Bucholz says. “Chad brings 25 years of experience with hard materials and manufacturing, so he can get in front of our customers and speak the language of the engineer. We feel very, very lucky to have found that. He was looking for the ability to sell hard materials and told us that he’d be a good fit because this is what he loves to do.”
In just a few months, Chad has shown his aptitude for forging relationships with customers, understanding the markets, working on business and market development and knowing the product.
“When it comes to carbide and ceramics, we’re in the business of solving problems for customers who have wear issues, so I consider myself a solutions provider,” Chad says. “The best part for me has always been coming up with a solution. When they give me a problem that they’re facing and I can provide them with a solution to solve that problem.”
That’s where one of Chad’s other talents comes in, driving those interactions to get the best result for the customer.
“’Driver’ encompasses being organized, being able to dictate and to steer,” Chad says. “When I’m in front of a customer, I listen to what they’re telling me before I offer up any type of suggestion because I want to understand what their problem is. A lot of times, what they want is very different from what they need, so I try to steer them in the right direction.”
In his free time (like he has any with seven kids ages 5 to 19), Chad enjoys camping, boating, being outdoors and golfing.