Q&A with Tom Crowley, CEO of MBX, Business Award Winner and Growth Champion

Posted by Michael Gallagher on Thu, Aug 25, 2011 @ 10:28 AM

Tom Crowley, CEO of MBX in Wauconda, Illinois, USA won the Stevie Award for Executive of the Year in Computer Hardware in The 2011 American Business Awards. He is the driving force behind MBX’s expansion in 2010, and for the previous fifteen consecutive years of growth.

Tom CrowleyWhat are your top 3 tips for keeping up business growth during a downturn?

My advice is simple:

  1. Constant customer communication;
  2. Diligent business development;
  3. Keep marketing!

What item of news recently caught your eye and why?

Jim Hendry, the Chicago Cubs (baseball team) General Manager, just got fired.  They should have given him another chance! Why did this catch my eye? Because I love the Cubs.

Do you have a favorite business app?

Signal, a homegrown app that our developers created to allow the company to operate at maximum efficiency. It has personalized dashboards that allow each employee to have instant access to just what they need. It’s awesome!

If you could choose another profession, what would it be?


(Before entering the business world, Tom Crowley was a musician whose band, Idle Tears, released an album on the MCA label and opened for the Beach Boys in 1984.)

What quality or qualities do you most value in your business associates?

Honesty, integrity, creativity, and guts.

What do you think is the worst bad habit to have at work?

My worst habit is that I am easily distracted. I know that if I could kick that, my job would be much easier.

As someone at the top of your profession, what keeps you inspired or makes you hit the ground running in the morning?

I don’t think that I could be considered at the “top of my profession." There are so many others out there who do what I do much better. Not to sound corny, but I think of my occupation as a journey—more of a road than a climb.

Besides my wonderful family, what makes me hit the ground running and inspires me is the fact that my job always changes. The road is never straight or flat. I do have consistent duties and requirements to help keep us going, but the challenges of the job are always in flux, which makes it fun and inspirational. Plus I have the best team of people in the world to work with, and I want to make sure that I can always provide them with the tools they need to be successful. We are all in this together.

About Tom Crowley

Tom Crowley is the CEO of MBX Systems. He founded the company in 1995 as a mail-order supplier of hard drives and, later, computer components. By 2003 he had transitioned MBX to focus exclusively on the server appliance market, providing software developers with the option to deliver their applications on hardware optimized for trouble-free customer deployment. He previously had a successful business-development career at Telecom Corporation.

About MBX Systems

MBX Systems specializes in the configuration, manufacturing, and deployment of server appliances and optimized systems for software application developers and service providers. MBX combines turnkey hardware programs with value-added services including platform configuration, hardware branding, inventory management, global logistics, product support, and system warranties.

Topics: American business awards, stevie awards, ABAs, management awards, executive of the year, Tom Crowley, MBX