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Meet Our Newest Team Member, Jeff Smith

LeAnne Flack
2:06 read

Meet Our Newest Team Member, Jeff Smith Jeff_Smith.jpeg

Tell us about yourself. 

I enjoy spending time with my wife, teenage son, and many great friends. Playing, writing, and creating music is a passion for me; I love anything music related. I used to play a lot of sports in school, but my knees don’t allow it now. I still love watching and participating whenever I can to stay active.

Why were you interested in account management?

I got into the textile industry because of my father, who sold fabric to the furniture industry. Growing up in High Point, NC, I was surrounded by furniture and fabric my whole life. Initially, I didn’t think I would be a part of this culture, but it gets into your blood. I found myself selling for my father and eventually decided to stick with this profession once I had a chance to personally become familiar with furniture manufacturers in the Carolinas.

What drew you to apply for a job at Milliken?

I explored a different industry the last few years and was on a new career path. However, there was a part of me that wished I could go back to work with some of the people that I’d met in the furniture industry. The people in this industry are exceptional, from the big powerhouse companies to the smaller family-owned businesses. Everyone  has always been friendly and accommodating. I missed the fantastic people and relationships.

When I saw the sales position with Milliken, I capitalized on the opportunity. One of my close friends works for the organization in the Floor Covering Division, so for the last 20 years, I’ve heard a lot about the company. When a guy doesn’t have anything bad to say about the company he works for, you have to say, “Wouldn’t it be nice to work there, too?”

What really drew me in, however, is Milliken’s history. While I was a little removed from the industry, I thought to myself, "I still have relationships, I still have the knowledge, and I still have a lot of passion." That’s why I decided to apply for this job.

What do you like most about Milliken so far?

What’s impressed me most is the company’s sustainability story. When I was researching the organization, I didn’t truly understand how committed Milliken is to this mission until I was hired. It’s not just a marketing story that we tell the world. We actually walk the walk. It’s ingrained in what we do, it’s a part of our culture, and it’s an extension of our company. It’s refreshing to be with a company that is so passionate about serving the community and the world.

Tell us more about your position.

My job is more than just a sales position. It’s about educating our customers and being a trusted resource. It’s truly about being a problem solver and finding the best solution. I’ve never been a part of raising awareness or had the opportunity to find a solution before. That part of my role has turned out to be really fun.

We’ve just got great products, and I enjoy having the chance to show them to everybody I encounter. I’m passionate about getting out there, talking about Milliken and the Breathe by Milliken® line, and discovering how we can add something special to our customers’ product line.

What excites you about the residential market right now?

When I left the industry, imported fabrics saturated the market, and the emphasis was on the cheapest available product. But there’s been a shift in the market with consumers valuing quality and responsible manufacturing over cost. We see more focus on domestically made products and sustainable performance fabrics.

Overall, I’m really excited about being here and being a part of this dynamic team.