River City Six – Matt Allen
Meet Matt Allen, project manager and commercial sales representative at Gerst Painting (www.gerstcontracting.com).
Tell us a little about your business.
Gerst Painting specializes in residential, industrial and commercial interior and exterior painting/wallcovering services. Our company has been servicing the Omaha Metro area for 40+ years and has won Best of Omaha for the past 15 consecutive years. We are committed to consistently delivering an exceptional finished product, continually growing our knowledge base and with our dedication to customer satisfaction, accountability, and teamwork.
How did you get started in the business?
In the summer of 1994 between my junior and senior years in high school I began working for a paint manufacturer, Iowa Paint. My first job there was tinting paint, stocking, and working with contractors. Following graduation in 1995 I returned, learning other aspects of the paint profession, improving my product knowledge, getting into management and establishing a solid start to my career in the industry. In 2004, I worked in the field painting new construction and existing residential as a subcontractor for 6 years. My experiences with both have helped me grow as a leader, manager, estimator, and consultant.
What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced professionally?
Public speaking, without a doubt. Attending networking events over the past few years with Gerst Painting has helped me get past this challenge.
What has been your most important achievement professionally?
Mastering my craft and improving my status in the paint industry throughout the years to get to where I am today.
Tell us a little about your family.
I’m the youngest of three, born and raised south Omaha. I’ve been married to my wife for 16 years and we have three wonderful boys.
What is your favorite thing to do on a day off?
I enjoy playing golf, regardless of how well or poorly I’m playing that day.
What is the most unique or interesting thing about you that most people probably don’t know?
I enjoy playing the harmonica, not that I sound great but I improve every time.
What are you the most proud of?
Being a father, spending time with my boys.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
Be yourself, be happy, and let everyone worry about themselves.
If you could choose only one descriptive word to be remembered as, what would it be?
If you had a theme song, what would it be?
Jive Talkin’ by the Bee Gees.
What is your greatest talent that you don’t utilize in your daily work life?
Social entertainment, otherwise known as the life of the party.
If you could choose any other profession to be successful in, what would it be?
What is your favorite book or the last good book you read?
My current favorite is Midnight by Dean Koontz.
What is your favorite local restaurant?
Jerico’s Restaurant; great food, great service and prices are fair.
If you could have dinner with one famous person from the past or present, who would it be?
Jim Morrison, The Doors.
If our readers would like to contact you, how should they do so?