Chris Reed joined Birmingham Freightliner and Western Star in 2012 as a used truck sales associate, with hopes that one day he’d be able to manage a team and run the department. Ten years later he’s been given the opportunity to do just that, and he feels that his patience and his ability to listen, learn and ask questions prepared him to take on the new role of Used Truck Sales Manager. Chris has worked his whole career according to his principals and morals, which line up perfectly with Peach State Truck Centers’ “Why”—to make a positive difference in the lives of others.
Chris was a hard worker from the beginning, having been employed since he was 15. When he was offered the operations manager position at a major semi-trailer leasing company while still in school at Tennessee Tech for mechanical engineering, he took the job knowing he could make a better living there than many of the graduates coming out of his program. At the age of 20, Chris was maintaining an inventory of over 1200 trailers.
“My work ethic comes from dad and grandad, who owned his own mechanic shops,” said Chris. “He always told me that if you’re honest and tell the truth to customers, you will have a customer for life. At his shops, his customers would just ask him to fix the car without asking the price, because they knew he would be honest with them. That stuck with me.”
Chris then sold tires for Goodyear, leased trailers in Nashville and eventually made his way to Birmingham, where he was a rental manager for an International dealership for 11 years. Chris had a short conversation with Peach State President Rick Reynolds when he joined the used truck sales team at Birmingham Freightliner and Western Star in 2012. In February of 2023, when he was interviewing for the manager position, Chris was stunned when Rick recalled what they had talked about in that conversation over ten years ago.
“Family is very important to me, so seeing the way Rick runs Peach State with that family atmosphere and hospitality, that means a lot to me,” continued Chris. “I feel like I’ve been given the tools here and the backing by management to get the job done.”
As the used truck sales manager, Chris hopes to make Birmingham Freightliner and Western Star and SelecTrucks of Alabama the number one used truck dealer in the state. He plans to use his experience, creativity and the well-established used truck team to get there. In the first month in the position, Chris utilized Peach State’s marketing department to promote a “March Madness” sales event to draw in potential buyers by giving away a high-end electric cooler. He also recognizes the importance of everyday fundamentals to move the department forward, like teamwork and positive thinking.
“I enjoy seeing things come together and the camaraderie of our sales team and knowing you’re helping them improve their lives,” finished Chris. “’To make a positive difference in the lives of others’ is a great mantra to have when it comes to customers and employees.”
The family life that Chris enjoys outside of the office revolves around get-togethers. His daughters are in college and his parents are in Nashville, but in the summer there are always people coming over to his house for cookouts.
“I enjoy family time, seeing my kids grow and learn. I instilled in them the same values my parents gave me. And now that I got two grandkids, life’s not slowing down for me.”