This spring, we welcomed James Ford into the role of President & Chief Executive Officer, following recently retired Duane Hendricks’ leadership succession. Previously, James served as both President and Chief Financial Officer. He also joined the Board of Directors in 2017. We sat down with James for a little “20 Questions” to get to know him better.
In one statement, what do you do at Egan?
“Create teams with a focus on long-term success”
What’s your favorite part about working at Egan?
“Hands down…..it’s our amazing people.”
What unique skills or strengths do you bring to your role?
“I have a natural tendency to be focused on the future, which leads me to be curious and ask a lot of questions about what we should do next, how we can accomplish it, and who can help us.”
When you aren’t at work, what do you enjoy spending your free time doing?
“I love to play golf and spend time on the water with my family.”
What advice would you have for future leaders in the industry?
“You will likely master the technical skills you need fairly early in your career; then invest your time in learning how to communicate effectively, ask great questions, build relationships, create consensus, and how to see things from someone else’s point of view.”
What is the most memorable moment you had with a client or customer in the last 20 years?
“I enjoy meeting with customers when we don’t have an active project with them because then the conversations are less about the current situation and are more focused on how we can build a better long-term relationship with them.”
What’s your educational background look like?
“Bachelor of Science in Accounting from North Dakota State University in Fargo, North Dakota.”
What’s one word you would use to describe the Egan team?
If your life was a movie, what genre would it be?
“Action with some comedy.”
What’s your favorite Minnesota season?
What’s your favorite way to stay active?
“Walking 18 holes”
How many years of industry experience do you have?
“If you count my early years helping my dad install flooring, it would be 30 years of experience. Professionally I have been working with contractors for 22 years.”
Where is your hometown?
Best vacation you’ve ever been on?
What was your first job?
“I worked the meat counter at a grocery store”
What’s the best part of your work day?
“Connecting with individual team members”
Who do you look to for inspiration/mentorship?
What’s your favorite board game?
Something that you’re extremely competitive about?
What game show do you think you’d have the best chance at winning?
“Price is Right”