Professional Q&A: Trey Cole
Trey Cole came highly recommended by a CEO I’ve known for over a decade. When I reached out to Trey, he was honored to be featured. By complete coincidence, I later sat near Trey at an Edmond Chamber fundraiser and found him to be very friendly, which is doubtlessly a part of his success. Trey serves as the director at MIDCON Data Services.
Q: Do you live in Edmond, work in Edmond, or both? For how long?
A: I was fortunate enough to marry my high school sweetheart Mikki. We have three kids: Brooklynn, Kempner, and Mckenzie. Mikki and I have lived in Edmond for 27 years of our lives, and we both have extended family here. Today we live on the east side of Edmond, and we love taking the kids to Arcadia trails for exercise.
MIDCON has several offices around the OKC metro area. Our Edmond warehouse is located on 33rd Street, just west of the railroad tracks. We also have corporate offices on Broadway Extension and Memorial Road.
Q: Where did you grow up and go to school?
A: Growing up in Edmond, I went first to Northern Hills Elementary, then Sequoyah Middle School, and graduated from Edmond North High School in 2007. My wife Mikki went to St. Mary’s Elementary, Cimarron Middle School, and graduated from Memorial High School.
After graduating high school in 2007, we went to Oklahoma State University, where I earned a BS in Industrial Engineering in 2011. Later, I got a professional MBA degree from the University of Oklahoma.
Q: What did you do before joining the team at MIDCON?
A: My first job out of school was in Tulsa at a company called Webco Industries. Webco is a multi-generation family company, who manufactures steel tubing products. I loved the people and the work there. I started at Webco as a process engineer before working my way into the production planning and supply chain department. My job was to oversee raw material purchasing, inbound/outbound shipping, master schedule planning and forecasting, inventory control, and performance metric analysis.
Q: How did you get involved with MIDCON?
A: I’ve been working at MIDCON Data Services for the last seven years as the Managing Director. MIDCON was started 30 years ago by my father-in-law, Randy Allen. In 1991, MIDCON primarily brokered seismic data to oil and gas organizations. Today MIDCON has grown into the largest independent record and information management company in Oklahoma. We still broker seismic data, but we also provide warehousing space, courier services, document destruction, document imaging/digitization, co-location data center space, disaster recovery/business continuity services, and property management services. In addition, Randy manages a large real estate portfolio that spans across the US.
MIDCON is a family company. Randy is the owner and CEO of MIDCON; he also happens to be my father-in-law. On a weekend lake trip, Randy asked if I would come home and help him with his operations. I didn’t know much about the company, but I recognized that it was an opportunity that most people my age do not get. I jumped at the opportunity and started three weeks later.
When I first started at MIDCON, I worked in the Edmond warehouse under the mentorship of Carl Tipton. We then quickly grew through a series of acquisitions and the launching of new product lines. Today we have seven warehouse facilities across Oklahoma and Texas.
MIDCON continues to be a proud supporter of the Edmond community. We actively participate and sponsor the Edmond Chamber of Commerce, Edmond Economic Development Authority, Edmond Public School Foundation, and several other local charity organizations.
Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: There are lots of good qualities about working at MIDCON – the team environment, the schedule flexibility, and getting to work with several different industries. My favorite part about my job is the responsibility and trust that is given to me. I don’t take for granted the opportunity that was given to me at a young age. I have a lot of latitude to make decisions and steer the company towards new business opportunities as I see them. I have the trust of my team and my boss to execute this.
Q: What’s something you’re passionate about in your personal life?
A: My favorite hobby is tennis. I started playing when I was in middle school and continued playing through high school. My senior year, I won the 6A state championship in #1 doubles at Edmond North. The new Edmond Center Court facility is going to be a world-class facility when it is all complete. I enjoy playing up there once or twice a week.
My favorite nonprofit organization is the Edmond Public School Foundation (EPSF). I had great experiences at Edmond Public Schools. EPSF’s mission is to connect the community to advance excellence and enrich student opportunities through Edmond Public Schools. I got involved because I saw how much of an advantage it gave me in college and the impact it made in my life. This is my 5th year on the board and serving on it is a way for me to give back to the community and ensure that my three kids will have the same opportunities and experiences that I had.
Q: What do you like about Edmond?
A: What’s not to like? It has the best schools, the safest neighborhoods, a good mix of small businesses and retail. There are several public parks to get outside and exercise.
Edmond has always been home to me, and I have lots of family in town. I enjoy the relationships and sense of community.
Edmond’s footprint has grown significantly over the last 30 years, but I do not think that the culture or values have drastically changed from when I was in school. I think Edmond will continue to be the best place to live in the metro for the next 30 years.
Q: What is your number one tip for other professionals, either for work or life in general?
A: I’m certainly not qualified to be giving out advice. However, one thing that I learned coming out of school was the importance of teamwork and culture. For many years I was concerned with standing out from the crowd and achieving superior individual success. I thought if I worked harder, faster, and smarter than everyone else, then recognition would quickly follow.
I’ve learned over time that it is more important to invest in relationships and to strive for team success. There are many different types of leadership styles, but for me, that meant executing change at a slower pace, listening more, and communicating frequently. Investing in these relationships will give you success that compounds over time and provides immensely more satisfaction.
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About Tim Priebe
Tim is a public speaker, author, publisher of Edmond Business, and the owner of T&S Online Marketing. He helps businesses that are worried they don’t have the expertise or time required to invest in doing their own digital marketing. He helps them plan where and how much to invest and often helps execute the plan.
Tim started the Edmond Business online magazine in May 2020 to fill a need in the community when The Edmond Sun shut down and stopped publishing their monthly magazine, The Business Times.