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By Bob Lesher on  10/17/2022

Faces of JBC: Let's Get to Know Dave Gibbs

David Gibbs

Welcome to the next edition of JBC's “Faces of JBC” blog series. Faces of JBC is where we take some time to get to know one of our dedicated and talented people behind the scenes here at JBC Technologies — America's favorite material converter and precision die-cutting expert.

Dave Gibbs is one of the newest members of Team JBC, having joined us as a technical sales representative in July 2022. He's part of the sales team responsible for capturing new business and growing and nurturing our relationships with our existing customers.

Are you ready to learn more about Dave and what makes him such an integral part of Team JBC?

Let's get started!

Where did you work before you joined JBC Technologies?

After college, I have only had two jobs, both in converting.  I worked at Dienetics for 10 years and then at Action Fabricators/ Boyd Corporation for 18 years.

What made you want to go into sales?

My wife’s dad owned a converting company called Dienetics. While I was in college studying to be a commercial airline pilot, he asked me if I would be interested in a business career.  I always thought a career in “business” was about as fun as lemon juice in a paper cut, but I told him I would try it. 

His father started the business, and the hope was that I could learn the business from the ground up and we could continue the tradition.  In the end, I found it fascinating.  I ended up working in every business area – and I mean every.  I eventually worked my way into sales. As a small company, salespeople were getters and skinners (they had to do their own estimating). 

The sales role at that small company involved all the fun things: relationships, travel, entertainment, estimating, and engineering.  I realized I had found my passion. I know that sounds overly dramatic, but I discovered that I enjoyed the technical aspects of the converting business.  I am admittedly a materials nerd and love problem-solving, so technical sales was a good fit for me.

What do you like the most about technical sales?

There were many aspects of my sales role at Dienetics — relationship-building, travel, and entertainment that I found myself drawn to.

I also found that the more technical sides of the role, like estimating, engineering, and problem-solving, were a good fit for me.

With technical sales combining all these things, it didn't take long to realize that I had found my passion.

Describe your role at JBC and how it fits into the big picture.

I love the term “big picture” because if you look at a digital photo at the pixel level, it is a massive conglomeration of small, connected dots.  Every dot has a role to play, and we are all connected.  If we took out the blue pixels from the photo, then there’s no purple in the picture (as well as many other missing colors). 

We need all the pixels. 

Suffice it to say every person at JBC is essential, and everyone plays a role in our success.  As a technical salesperson, my role is to find new customers that need our products and to mine our current customers for more business.  As a material nerd, I try to help customers solve problems with die cut parts. 

In most instances, numerous converters are competing for the same piece of cheese.  The converter that built a better relationship and can build the better mousetrap usually wins the cheese.  I am just a part of the trap making team and I hope I can play a role in getting us some more cheese.

What attracted you to JBC Technologies? 

There are two main reasons I was attracted to JBC Technologies:

  1. JBC is a relatively small company where I feel I can contribute as part of a team and hopefully make a difference.
  2. Todd Wright, JBC Technologies CEO, was also a key factor. He and I worked together for close to 15 years, and he was also my manager for a time.  I appreciated his relationship sales-focused, “big picture” approach to everyday business.  I witnessed his humility, work ethic, and integrity firsthand.  I couldn't pass it up when the opportunity arose to work with/for him again.

What is the best part/most unique aspect of working at JBC so far?

I've been in the material converting business for a long time, so I think I've seen and done it all. That's not the case.

Being at JBC means I get to see an approach to converting that's unique to me. Seeing how a different organization develops solutions to familiar problems has been enjoyable and humbling.

What can you tell us about your JBC team?

I'm relatively new here, so everything is still pretty fresh. I'm just getting to know everybody, but everyone I've interacted with has been very supportive. I also work remotely, so most of my interactions have been virtual, which has challenged me.

Being remote, my interactions tend to be via email, giving them a transactional feel. I miss the face-to-face interactions of the office —  the smell of coffee, the sharing of a “my kid did this" moment — but I do hope to be in the plant about every month, so hopefully, we'll get to know each other more this way.

 

What is your favorite part of technical sales at JBC?

The best parts of my job are relational selling and problem-solving. I love helping customers find custom die-cut solutions to their sticky, leaky, and squeaky problems.

What's been your proudest moment at JBC?

Working remotely has challenged me, but it's getting better. I'm proud that my frustration hasn't gotten the better of me. My computer remains in one piece.

What's your greatest motivation?

My family is my greatest motivator. As a child, I grew up with very little. Being able to leave my children some legacy when I'm gone is my biggest motivation.

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How have you grown professionally since you started in the converting and die-cutting business?

I believe that personal and professional growth are tied together.  30-year-old Dave thought he had it all figured out.  55 year-old Dave thinks 30 year-old Dave was a pompous knucklehead.  The older I get, the more I realize how little I know.  I am realizing how diversity brings fresh approaches to both work and life.  They say when you’re a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

I aspire to be a butterknife.

When you’re a butterknife, you’re a screwdriver, a prybar, a smearer of things, a lockpicker, or even a mirror to help someone get a piece of basil out of their teeth.  I hope to be the best butterknife I can be, but I also want to try and learn from the experiences of that tiny little spoon in the back of the drawer that only comes out for dessert at Christmas. 

What are some of your interests outside of work?

I love just about any outdoor activity. I probably enjoy fishing most of all, but building, remodeling, cooking, entertaining, and cocktail-making (and drinking, of course) are all close seconds

Almost any activity with family and friends.

I have a cottage in the remote wilderness of northern Ontario where I can simultaneously enjoy many of my interests.

The cabin is just on the edge of the arctic watershed, and I thoroughly enjoy bringing people up there to experience a different way of life.

What is something about you that most people don’t know?

I have muscular dystrophy. It used to go unnoticed, but it's getting more noticeable as I get older. The type that I have affects certain muscle groups in my feet and hands, so thankfully, it’s not directly life-threatening. Unless my ankles fail me while I’m on a ladder, that is.

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