Jeff Peel

Occupation: Vice President, Professional Services, Accruent

First Car: 1984 Jeep Cherokee
Favorite Restaurant: Attilios in Dover  (it has a gluten free menu)

What are three things most people don't know about you?

a). I have a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering.
b). I walked on the stage of Radio City Music Hall.
c). I teach Sunday School at my Methodist Church.

What's been your greatest adventure in life?

Raising my two daughters: Emily (7) and Erin (5).  There is something new every day.

What's your best childhood memory?

Riding bikes with friends when I was in grammar school.  We were fee to go anywhere and explore and have adventures.  It was a different time then.

If you could have a conversation with a person of your choice, past, present or future, who would that person be and why?

I would want to talk to Nelson Mandela. I read his autobiography for a grad school project.  He is an amazing man and I would love to learn more about some of the choices that he had to make during his life.

What's the hardest thing you've ever done in your life?

The hardest thing I ever had to do was deliver my grandfather’s eulogy.  I had so much respect for my grandfather and while his death was not a surprise, it affected me in a deep way.  I was honored to be asked to deliver the eulogy but I was overcome by how hard it was to actually say the words.

Tell us about your favorite hobby.

I love music.  I play the drums and bass guitar.  I love to see live bands (but don’t get enough opportunities).  I have a large itunes collection and can’t get enough new music. I even wired my house with a central speaker system.  Music is always playing.

What are you currently reading? What is your favorite book?

I just finished “The Road” by Cormac McCarthy.

“Lord of the Rings” trilogy is my favorite book (I can’t pick one).  I have read this at least 3 times.

Is there a particular place or thing you want to see?

I would love to go to Yellowstone National Park.  The pictures I have seen from there look beautiful.  Alaska is another place I would like to visit someday.

If you could give $10,000 to a charity, what would that charity be and why?

I was having a difficult time with this one but then the Haiti earthquake hit.  I would donate this to the Red Cross.

If you weren't on the professional services career track, what would you be doing?

I always wanted to do research:  running experiments, collecting and correlating data.  Maybe something in a physics field?  This is the engineer in me talking.

What is the path that led you to Professional Services/Consulting?

I have always had an affinity towards consulting and sought employment opportunities that allowed me to design solutions for others.  I initially worked for a small CAFM company implementing facility management solutions for organizations like The Federal Reserve Bank, Radio City Music Hall, and Hoechst Celanese.  From here, I took a job at Coopers & Lybrand working in their Corporate Real Estate department.  This was not a consulting position but I was allowed to implement many cutting edge solutions to improve internal real estate processes.  C&L helped me to realize that I wanted to develop and implement technical solutions across many clients. 

I joined Accruent in 1998 as a project manager.  Accruent was a perfect fit for me as it allowed me to combine my real estate and facilities management background with technical consulting.  I have been here ever since.  My career has allowed me to work with many talented individuals and I am proud of the solutions that we were able to implement. I think life would be boring without the challenge of finding new solutions to the unending supply of customer needs

What advice would you give to a recent graduate who just took a job in professional services?
Always know who you are in the room with.  Your approach should be different when interacting with a user, business sponsor, and VP.  Each of these people have different expectations and goals.  I made mistakes early on where in meetings and on calls - I did not have a clear understanding of the role of each participant.  I stuck my foot in my mouth more than once.  Experience has taught me to prepare for meetings and calls by understanding the audience, their goals and attitudes.  Even a quick attendance at the beginning of a call can help you to adjust your presentation, tone, and pace.