One of the best compliments Ken Taylor recalls receiving came years ago at a high school awards banquet, when his high school baseball coach described him as “consistent.” Proving the accuracy of that assessment, his new boss at IIA recently used the same word to describe Ken. Whether your game is baseball or industrial sales, it’s high praise indeed.
“I don’t get super worked up over things. I have a pretty level personality,” says Ken, who joined IIA as Southeast Regional Sales Manager in December 2021. “I try to stay steady and consistent, and to focus on things I can control.”
Those traits have served him well throughout a successful sales career in the non-destructive evaluation (NDE) industry. Ken started out selling NDE equipment, helping to solve serious inspection issues for the military, aviation and other industries. For example, he recalls working with the U.S. Army to develop an inspection solution to detect corrosion in helicopter drive shafts.
“It’s interesting and rewarding to help customers prevent failures that could be catastrophic,” says Ken. “Most NDE equipment is medical equipment that’s been industrialized. Advances in technology have made NDE inspections easier, faster, and more accurate for customers.”
After selling NDE equipment for about 8 years, Ken transitioned into selling NDT services — a path that eventually led him to IIA.
“I wanted to join Industrial Inspection & Analysis because it was a good opportunity with a good company. IIA is well established, but still has lots of room to grow,” notes Ken, who is based in Birmingham, Alabama. “IIA has a strong team with a lot of expertise and experience. I look forward to bringing customers on board that will be long-time IIA customers.”
In his new role, Ken aims to increase the company’s name recognition in the Southeastern United States. He has also made it a priority to cross-sell IIA services, which include field inspections, engineering solutions and laboratory testing.
“One of the things I’m challenging myself to do is take IIA services that we use in certain industries and move them into other industries. It’s a challenge, but it’s also a great opportunity.”
While his job keeps him on the go, Ken also enjoys traveling with his family and indulging their shared love of sports. In his free time, you may find him on the golf course where he tries to leverage the same consistency that once gave him an edge in baseball.
In conversations with friends, family, and people he meets, Ken has grown accustomed to a certain reaction when he tries to explain his work.
“98% of the world has no idea what non-destructive evaluation is or how important it is. When people ask me what I do, their eyes glaze over pretty quickly,” he says. “But if a bridge collapses or a boiler explodes, it’s catastrophic. People lose their lives every year from failures like this; the work we do at IIA can help prevent that.”
As he starts a new chapter in his career, Ken is optimistic about working for IIA.
“The thing I enjoy most about my job is building relationships — and trust — with customers,” says Ken. “I’m looking forward to watching the company grow and helping the company grow.”
He may be new to IIA, but customers will soon learn what his high school baseball coach understood: You can count on Ken.
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