Jamie Houghton: 47 years in Orangeville, 26 years at Hallmark Toyota
When he graduated from the Georgian College automotive marketing program in 1989, Jamie Houghton wasn’t quite ready for a job interview when he received a call from the general manager of Hallmark Toyota. Having spent most of his life in Orangeville, Jamie and Gord Crockford knew each other already – and Gord knew that Jamie was the right guy to fill a job in the dealership’s parts department.
“Like almost everybody that works at a dealership, I started cleaning cars,” Jamie says. “I worked at a GM dealership when I was younger cleaning cars, and also in the parts department. The time I spent at Georgian gave me a good grounding in inventory control and accounting as well as sales and marketing – and soon, I was basically running the parts department.”
In 2011, Jamie was offered the position of service manager, something he adapted well to after over 20 years in parts. “I like working with people; there’s always a challenge when you’re dealing with the public, and in service, but I’m a people person, and we have a lot of long-time customers at Hallmark, as well as a lot of long-time staff. I like spending time with our customers and with our team.”
Having worked around Toyotas for over 25 years, Jamie has great connections at the manufacturer, and he really believes in the cars that the dealership sells and services.
“When I started, Toyota was a small brand with a limited model lineup. It’s grown a lot over the years, but what’s always been there is the reliability. Toyota has worked so hard over the years to consistently improve the quality of their cars. Our customers love how reliable and durable they are.”