The concept of “people first” is one of SNA Displays’ most important core values. It’s true, we offer top-tier LED video display technology. But our strongest collective asset is the people who work at SNA Displays day in and day out, the ones who make our motto, Dreams Live Digitally®, a reality. As we continue our employee spotlight series, let’s learn little more about Paul England.
Paul is the Director of Solutions at SNA Displays. He has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (BSBA) and a Master’s in Business Administration and Marketing, both from Jacksonville State University. He has a diverse professional background, having worked for several well-known companies such as Hewlett-Packard and Canon. His experience in the LED industry spans over nine years, four of which have been at SNA Displays.
Where did you grow up? Do you have any favorite childhood memories you’d like to share?
Believe it or not, I’m native to Atlanta. That’s honestly quite rare, as this city is full of amazing people from all over the place, which gives us lots of inherited culture. That also means I’m a long-suffering Falcons and Braves fan, although Atlanta United and Rugby ATL have given me plenty to cheer for in the past few years.
Do you have a personal motto or mantra? If so, what is it and what are its origins for you?
Learn something about everything, and everything about something. I coined that ages ago, but it was borne out of my parents pushing us kids to explore a wide variety of topics and activities. This one goes hand-in-hand with my belief that most people are the Wayne Gretsky or Michael Jordan of something, but 99.999% of people never figure out what that is. Even Jordan struggled at baseball, right? So, try your hand at LOTS of things and you just might discover what your gift is.
How do you like to spend your free time?
I have tons of hobbies, maybe too many, but really enjoy cars, airplanes, boats, playing musical instruments, anything space related… lots of things.
What’s a fun fact most people don’t know about you?
As a kid, I sang with the Young Singers of Callanwolde and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra for seven years, and I was in a few Coca-Cola commercials. I’m also a private pilot.
Besides your job, what subject(s) are you interested in or have expertise in?
I played in a competitive drum and bugle corps as a teenager, and now sit on the Board of Directors for my drum corps, Spirit of Atlanta. I’ve been playing drums for about four decades, so you’d think I’d be better than I am! But I love to donate time and money to such an important catalyst for encouraging leadership, musicianship, performance mindset, and responsibility in our teens and young adults.
Who’s had a significant influence on your life?
There is a long list, but if I must keep it to one person, it’s my father. He was always quick with a word of advice, but ready to help when you decide not to take it. He was an innovator in the early days of computers, with several degrees, but also a humanitarian that has started or run several charities. When I grow up, I want to be just like him.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever gotten?
Never be afraid to fail, just be quick to get back up. It’s only truly a failure if you fail to learn from it.
What did you do professionally before joining SNA Displays?
I spent 13 years at Hewlett-Packard doing everything from field sales, sales management, product marketing, and more. I left there and went to Canon for three years, and then about five years at NanoLumens prior to joining the best company in America.
What has been your favorite job (other than SNA of course) and why?
I had the privilege of managing the Eastern US for HP LaserJet in the late 90s. I had a killer team of salespeople and field engineers. We were given carte blanche to design the program, and ended up more than tripling our sales goals. Alas, we became victims of our own success; they broke the team up when they promoted most of my team members into management roles. I’m still friends to this day with most of that team, and we look back fondly on those years.
Experience at SNA Displays
What drew you to SNA Displays?
When I met Dennis and Jason, I knew this was a place I could be happy for a long, long time. We have outstanding people, culture, and products, and I couldn’t be more proud to do what we do.
In your own words, how would you describe your current role?
My prime role is being our interface to the architecture, design, consulting, and content community. I also support the Channel and sales teams.
How have your previous jobs been similar to working at SNA? Different?
I learned that I’m much better suited to working someplace like SNA Displays than going back to big, corporate America where I’m stuffed into a narrow role and I can’t see the results of my efforts directly. Not to mention the people, culture, and atmosphere at SNA Displays is far superior to my prior experiences.
What is your typical workday like?
Hahahaha, I’ll let you know when I have a typical day!
What do you like most about your job?
My coworkers. Working with an amazing cast of rock stars every day, that I also get to call my friends? That’s awesome.
What accomplishment at SNA are you most proud of? Your career overall? What is your next big accomplishment going to be?
I’m extremely proud of my part in bringing the WarnerMedia lobby project to the company, and cannot wait to see it finalized soon. I’m always looking for the next major project, and hope I can help bring it in.
How has your current role helped in your career development?
My current role has encouraged me to learn about many new products, technologies, and more. I love learning about stuff like that.
If you could switch jobs for a day with anyone else at SNA Displays, whose job would you want and why?
This company is chock full of “Grade-A” people, and I’m not sure I’d do any of their jobs justice.
Looking to the Future
Where is SNA Displays and/or the industry headed in the next 10 years?
Whew. If I had that good of a crystal ball, I’d probably buy more lottery tickets! But my best estimate is that LED will become even more commonplace in retail, corporate, and many other environments. SNA Displays will continue to carve out our niche of being the people to call when you need amazing experiences done just right. We may not be the biggest LED provider, but we’re for sure the one with the right answers. From an industry perspective, I do think we will see some shifts in technology. Maybe it’s microLED, or something we haven’t even seen yet, but I have faith that we will keep building killer products to shake things up with.
What advice would you give a prospective SNA Displays employee in your field?
If you wonder if moving to SNA Displays is a good move, I’d say not to hesitate. My only regret is not getting over here a couple years sooner.
Anything else you’d like to share?
Every day you are either improving or getting worse. There is no coasting. Take the time to explore something outside your comfort zone, learn about something important to someone important to you, and probably most crucially, just do something kind for someone you don’t know at least once a day.