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Q&A: Inside Jeff Peevy’s Upcoming Role as CIC Chairman

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August 10, 2018—Jeff Peevy was announced as the next chairman for the Collision Industry Conference at NACE Automechanika in Atlanta, Ga. Peevy says that while he has no specific agenda for the following two years, he is very driven by humanity.

“I want us to always be thinking about the human impacts of our industry,” Peevy says. “CIC seems to be about 20 to 21 percent of new attendees and that is phenomenal.”

Peevy says it is important for leaders to reflect now and think about how they got so far due to their mentors before them. Going forward, Peevy says he wants to encourage more involvement from the younger people in the industry and to encourage more attendance from new participants.

“I want to make sure I pay it forward,” he says

FenderBender caught up with Peevy after CIC's meeting in Atlanta and discussed his goals for his time as chairman and the state of the industry now.

 

How long have you been involved with CIC?

I joined back in the 1990s. I would say my first CIC meeting was probably 1998. I might have attended a meeting every once in awhile but that’s when I started regularly attending.

I’ve been on the standards committee and the education committee. I really got bit by the education bug. Looking back, I’ve been involved in education and training. I have taught I-CAR classes, been the training director for VALSPAR, and before that worked as a jobber and distributor.


When were you chosen as the next CIC chairman?

The reason it was announced at CIC this month was so I could have the next few months to listen to issues, organize those and really prioritize solutions for the industry on those issues. Then with the help of past chairs we get to narrow down what those issues should be for the next two years.

We’ll likely put those topics in front of the CIC body to give us more guidance. Then we’ll go about forming those committees and appoint committee chairmen.

 

What are your goals for next year?

I’m at a point in my career where I want to give back and serve the industry. The industry has been good to me so I want to give back. I’m really impressed with younger people that are coming in. I feel a growing comfort that the industry is going to be in a good place.

The things we’re facing now are very complex. One of the things I am going to be adamant about is that I want CIC to be a very respectful place. From day one, I will have no tolerance for disrespect. We can debate and discuss as long as they’re in the antitrust guidelines.

I’m going to be reserved about an agenda because I don’t want to sway the process.

 

At the CIC meeting, you mentioned it was important to "play like a rookie." What did you mean by that?

I have almost a reverse-mentor process with my own kids for example. I provide them with mentoring and they provide me with new knowledge. I speak about learning as an element of business culture. Some of the hang-ups our industry has had is because of an industrial mindset. But learning means adaptability.

Mike Jones and his Discover Leadership program is phenomenal and he is always saying play like a rookie. When I entered the industry I had coaches and leaders who believed in me and I was eager to learn. After you’ve been in the industry awhile, your willingness and consciousness to learn slows down.

I’m going to play like a rookie and be enthusiastic, excited and really on my toes about it. We have the benefit of all these great organizations that are nonprofit and they’ve already been established with the goal of helping the industry. Now, we need the younger generations wanting to explore that.

 

What is your plan for working with the CIC committees?

The work is really done by the committees. Once those committees are set in motion, they’ll take over that work. I do have a real high belief in transparency.

When I was involved with I-CAR, we set up the industry segmented advisory councils. That was really vital for the gathering and organizing of feedback. The way I’ll simply do it, I’ll take the feedback and put it into this process. For example, a hot topic right now is vehicle safety systems but there can be multiple perspectives on this. I’m going to take those perspectives, organize it and then go back to the people to make sure we interpreted it correctly. We’ll look for those common themes and put them into buckets and then take those categories and add them to the overarching theme.

I’ll give those to the committees and say, here is what we have heard. It will be like marching orders almost.

 

Why did you offer your cell phone number to everyone at CIC?

I want to give everyone the opportunity to come to me. I can’t make promises on making it happen but I can certainly put it in the mix.

I’ve been in this industry pretty much my whole adult life, and I’m sincere and want people to feel like they could have those conversations and feel comfortable calling me or texting. One of the things I’ve learned is that if I’m not open to be available then I’ll likely miss a perspective. My job between now and the end of the year is to simply listen.

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