Gerard Garza, a Commercial Territory Sales Representative at Simpson Strong-Tie, shares his 3-year journey with the company. From his background in sales to his current role, he values building customer relationships. Gerard and colleagues volunteered for Extreme Makeover Home Edition, reflecting Simpson’s core values of giving back, and having fun. He appreciates Simpson’s culture and looks forward to more volunteering opportunities.
Hello, I’m Gerard Garza and I’m a Commercial Territory Sales Representative for the Southwest Texas territory. I just celebrated my 3rd year at Simpson on September 16th. I must thank my friend Joseph Cavazos (TM South Texas) for introducing me to Simpson and am beyond grateful that he did! Coming to Simpson was not only a career changing experience, but also a life changing experience for my family and me.
Prior to Simpson, I worked for Apple for 11 ½ years. This is where I first took a chance at sales and never looked back. I then decided for a change of venue and took a job with LegalZoom where I helped to democratize the law as a sales representative. I helped people realize their dreams of being a business owner by helping them to set up LLC’s, Corporations, and Non-Profit Corporations. After 9 ½ years at LegalZoom, I got a call from Joseph about the Residential DSR opportunity, and he totally sold me on it! I applied for the role, got the job and moved my family to South Texas.
After 2 ½ years as a Dealer Sales Representative, I applied for and accepted my current role as a Commercial TSR, which also enabled me to move my family back to central Texas. My current key responsibilities are to drive demand and grow sales of all Simpson Strong-Tie product lines. This includes being active on job sites, conducting sales calls, identifying opportunities, giving presentations and hands on demonstrations, training and repairing tools. My favorite key responsibility though, is developing and maintaining relationships with our customers. My wife will tell you that no matter where we go, I always run into someone…I attribute that to all those relationships I’ve developed over the years.
When Jon Levy- Regional Sales Manager in McKinney, Texas sent out an email asking if anyone in the Central Texas area would like to volunteer for Extreme Makeover Home Edition, it was a no brainer. I immediately responded and signed up to volunteer. I was not the only Simpson employee that signed up to volunteer. Joe Ritchie (TM Central Texas), Matt Lea (TM Houston and Southeastern Texas), Jim Phelps (DSR Houston) and Isaac Flores (DSR Houston) all answered the call to help. What better way to give back than to volunteer time for a great cause like this. Just another perk of working for Simpson!
The core objective was to build a house for a very deserving family in one weeks’ time. Though we did not help directly with building the house, we helped in various ways throughout the day. Whether it was driving a golf cart to ensure that volunteers got from the parking lot to the sign in tent and vice versa, ensuring that coolers stayed filled with ice, cold water and Gatorade, breaking down full pallets of water and stacking them inside a refrigerated trailer, or building steps for the crews trailers, we all made sure that we did our best so that the crew could meet the deadline and give the keys to a new house to this deserving family.
Simpson’s involvement with Extreme Makeover Home Edition aligns with several of our core values. I can easily call out 3 of the 9 core values which are…#5 Everybody matters, #8 Give Back and #9 Have Fun, Be Humble. Our culture is everything. I’ve never worked for a company that says they have a great culture and lives up to it, like Simpson. Everyone (internally and externally) is valued and it’s critical that we do everything we can to make people feel that way. We are fortunate to work for a company where Giving Back is encouraged by doing whatever you can, whenever you can. No matter what our personal situation is, we know that there are others in this world and in our immediate communities that may never have the opportunities we’ve had or currently enjoy, so it’s our responsibility to reach out and support them. Lastly, Have Fun and Be Humble! We work hard to be good at what we do, but you can have fun while doing so. Volunteering your time is a great way to have fun while humbly helping others reach their goals and, in this case, making the dream of being a homeowner become a reality.
What do I like most about working at Simpson? It’s the people and our culture! It’s being encouraged to give back whether it comes from corporate or something you feel in your heart is necessary. It’s knowing that hard work is truly rewarded and recognized. What’s not to like about working at Simpson?!
I don’t currently have any plans to volunteer on future builds or programs, but I will quickly answer the call should the opportunity present itself at work or on my own time. This really makes me want to get my children involved too! The feeling you get from giving back is incredible and once you’ve done it you can’t suppress the urge to do it again. Thank you, Simpson, for giving us the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of others!