CEO Spotlight: Doerken’s Kent Anderson

Kent Anderson is the president of Doerken Coatings North America. MICHauto spoke with Anderson about his priorities and motivations as an automotive executive.

What is your number one priority as CEO?
Our highest priority is to continue on our path of creating and investing in an enduring, healthy culture – one which is based on fundamental values such as team-first, respect for one another, integrity, and trust. Each member of our team plays a critical role in our collective success. Alignment with our core values is essential to working together and ultimately meeting our objectives. The culture is intended to provide a foundation where each team member is empowered to create value and innovate within their respective roles. Establishing a culture based on trust, respect, and integrity enables each of our colleagues to have confidence to execute their plan to succeed. This process has a beginning, though no end. The greatest reward is seeing team members embrace these values in their lives and behaviors, in and out of the workplace.

What are you grateful for?
There are so many elements of my life to be grateful for, I could write a chapter on this topic alone. For brevity, certainly family, friends, and community top the list. Followed closely by the opportunity to work with a great team at Doerken Coatings in North America and globally. In addition, the industry relationships developed over many years have provided opportunities beyond expectation. It is through these relationships that I have had the privilege to work with many talented individuals who have shaped my life. It is from life experience that I have gained the insight, knowledge, and practical wisdom that I endeavor to apply and share with others today.

How do you keep your team motivated in the face of conflicts or obstacles?
Overcoming obstacles and challenges is a daily event. Over the course of my life and career, I have been fortunate to learn a few valuable lessons. Encouraging our team to maintain awareness during difficult challenges and conflicts is the first step in creating a solution. By becoming fully aware of the challenge we can collectively work to provide an effective solution. Along with gaining awareness of a situation, we encourage a “response” rather than a “reaction.” The point is to keep the issue in proper context, align necessary resources, and develop a solution. Clarity to the simple process motivates our team to be creative and solution-oriented.

What is your favorite car and why?
Chevrolet Corvette. Exceptional performance and value! True American sports car legacy.

CEO Spotlight: OneMagnify’s Mark Petroff

Mark Petroff is the president and chief executive officer of OneMagnify. MICHauto had the chance to speak with Petroff about what attributes he looks for in successful leaders.

Who do you look up to for inspiration or mentorship?
I have always found inspiration in the sailors who serve in our Navy – forward-deployed on the tip of the spear. From every corner of the United States, including Michigan, their stories have always resonated with me. Whether serving on a submarine, ship, or aviation squadron in peace or war, they represent America with incredible professionalism while sacrificing so much individually for the security of our nation. On my toughest days, I always reflect on the fact that there is likely a submariner three months into a six-month deployment giving and sacrificing far more than anything I can do in my day-to-day.

What are you grateful for?
I’m grateful for the opportunity to lead OneMagnify – serving our employees and clients. We have been able to build a team here that is focused on client service, while also creating a brighter workplace that values positivity, empathy, and most importantly, inclusivity. We recently launched our Unify team. Unify is focused on growing OneMagnify’s focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion. I am learning so much about creating a better company for all employees and have been grateful for the team’s initiative in launching Unify. We’ve signed up for the United Way’s 21 Day Equity Challenge and can’t wait to apply the best practices to our company.

What are the most important attributes of successful leaders today?
Given the dynamics of the pandemic, I have been emphasizing with my leadership team that they must approach every day with a mindset that is centered around being resilient and agile. But, as we move forward from the pandemic to address the automotive industry’s fundamental changes, we’re focusing on being empathetic to the consumer’s needs and innovative in driving solutions to not only meet their needs but also anticipate them.

What is your essential quarantine TV series, hobby, or book?
My wife and I have subscribed to every streaming service out there. Re-watching The Office and seeing Ted Lasso were our favorites early in the pandemic. I often get accused of channeling Ted Lasso and Michael Scott by my team. Recently, we added the Peacock Network just to get Yellowstone. It’s like HBO’s Succession, but set in the best that Utah and Wyoming have to offer. It’s a fun storyline with the eye candy of the West. A perfect escape from the drudgery and monotony of Zoom meetings!


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