A Conversation with Jason Gatton, Pneu-Mech Systems

Jason Gatton is a special projects manager at Pneu-Mech Systems, having started with the company more than 20 years ago.


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Jason Gatton is a special projects manager at Pneu-Mech Systems, having started with the company more than 20 years ago working in the field, learning how finishing systems are installed and operated. He moved into manufacturing, then design/estimating and then onto the sales team, where he currently is responsible for managing the design, sales and final acceptance of special projects related to automotive, electrocoat and global accounts.

PF: How did you get your start in the finishing industry?
JG: I was given the opportunity to travel with installation crews at Pneu-Mech in 1996. I gained hands-on experience with the equipment and got to see it in operation.

PF: How does it help having worked at many different levels in the industry and in your company?
JG: Experience designing, fabricating and installing paint systems is very helpful. It provides a tremendous advantage when communicating and connecting with colleagues, industry partners and customers. I feel that I can better discuss options for the customer and work with them to find solutions to their needs because I have seen it first-hand.

PF: As a member of the Products Finishing 40 Under 40 class, what advice would you give other young people?
JG: Being prepared, on time and a pleasure to be around is a great start. A willingness to learn and assist others has given me opportunities that I would not have otherwise had.

PF: What’s the best piece of advice you have been given?
JG: Be willing to do things today that others will not do, so tomorrow you can do things that others can’t do. 

PF: What was your first job, and what did you learn from it?
JG: Refereeing soccer at 15. I learned to be on time and fair. 

PF: What leadership traits have helped you along the way?
JG: I can work with a variety of people. The people you encounter in a work environment can each be unique. The challenge is to work with each one to achieve the desired results. My patience and flexibility allows me to lead people to complete the goal. I also focus on leading by example. I try to show people how things need to be done, not just tell them.

PF: What did you want to be when you grew up?
JG: An attorney. 

PF: What organization or company, aside from your own, do you most admire?
JG: Apple.

PF: Who would you trade jobs with for a day?
JG: A fighter pilot.
PF: Where would we find you on a typical Saturday?
JG: Near the water with my wife and two daughters.

PF: Personal heroes?
JG: My grandfathers. Both were veterans. 

PF: How do you motivate people?
JG: With my actions. The results will follow. 

PF: How do you motivate yourself?
JG: By always thinking ahead and understanding what’s next.

PF: Three greatest passions?
JG: Family, fitness and being better every day.

PF: Most unique office décor?
JG: A Naval Letter of Commendation that was given to one of my grandfathers. 

PF: Best business decision?
JG: Being flexible and willing to learn different aspects of our industry by actually doing them.

PF: What word best describes you?
JG: Committed.