AN INTERVIEW WITH
AN INTERVIEW WITH
I was born and raised in a very small town in Alabama, called Coatopa. It’s about an hour southwest of Tuscaloosa, home of Alabama’s famed football team - Roll Tide. I was raised by two lovely parents and by the age of 13 or 14, I realized I wanted more so I had to broaden my horizons. I chose to go to Alabama’s School of Math and Science, a boarding school in Mobile, AL and embraced that challenge. I initially experienced some culture shock, not only from the range of ethnicities and religions I got to be around, but also from the workload and academics, which were not easy.
But, that experience propelled me to think and figure out my next step, which was college. This led me to getting accepted into Emory University. It’s a funny story because my academic counselor at the time said I wouldn’t get accepted. This obviously motivated me to prove her wrong and prove to myself that I can overcome the odds. Emory was definitely challenging. Its academic program was unlike anything I had ever experienced. However, it offered me opportunities to explore and discover my career interests.
Originally, I wanted to become a surgeon, but I ended up changing my major three times and finally decided on economics with a concentration in finance. After graduation, I joined the banking industry accepting an offer to work as a credit analyst at a midsize community bank in West Alabama.
During my time there, the bank really invested in my growth by getting me involved in their management training program. This program would have positioned me to head a bank one day. This was an incredible opportunity because had I assumed this role, I would have been the only person of color in management at that level, and at such a young age.
Despite this opportunity looming, there was still something in me that wanted more.
Around June 2019, I learned about a wonderful opportunity at NCR to be a Financial Analyst. I applied and in July 2019 accepted that position, and have been growing here ever since.
What I love most about the sales side of my job is the relationships I’ve developed with the inside sales team at NCR and the current account team I support. That has been the biggest component that’s made me enjoy my role at NCR
I think I’ve grown massively. Even within the short period of time I’ve been here, there have been significant changes in the company, especially from a year-to-year perspective. I’m in a unique position because I've really gotten to be connected and neck-deep in this change as it’s happening. Professionally, before NCR, I’ve always enjoyed taking risks, but they have typically been more calculated risks.
The hardest part of my job is managing multiple roles. From my day-to-day finance activities to my sales role and sales training sessions, I’m always juggling multiple competing items. The training aspect of my role is very fulfilling because I get to really dedicate time to improve the talent at NCR, but the biggest difficulty I face with these varying roles is time management. I have to be especially intentional with my time and prioritizing which tasks are going to get done first, ahead of others. I’m lucky at NCR to have a great, supportive team on both sides of the field. From the finance side to the sales side, I always have support when I need it.
I’m pretty present-minded and I try to stay that way. I meditate every day and I try to take inspiration from everything around me. I try not to miss anything. From fashion—how someone puts together an outfit, the way someone articulates themselves, to the music and art they consume — I try to draw inspiration from all of it. So, if I’m in a rut, I’m probably going to call my friends or parents, maybe even a colleague just to get my mind off of the place where I’m stuck, so I can then approach it with a new perspective.
To me, customer service means going above and beyond to help the customer. With that being said, during our current times, this can be challenging due to the supply chain constraints. When I first started my current role, for example, I had to deliver bad news to our customer.
What I learned from the period of WFH was that yes, the work can still be done and people can still be highly efficient and productive. With that being said, when I initially began working from home, I was slightly off-balanced and felt similarly to a lot of other people, that our lives were just upended and that we faced great uncertainties and danger. What helped me was creating a specific workspace that replicated my office space in GHQ. Creating an environment in my house specifically for work allowed me to separate the spaces I work and the spaces for play. Then, all I had to do was establish more structure and routine in my day. Once I set up this environment and routine, I really had a blast working from home and it was easy to become efficient again.
I think that's probably the biggest commonality between our employees — everyone’s willing to help. I think if that wasn't the case, it probably wouldn't be as positive and happy of a work environment like we see during Fun Thursdays. We all have a day of the week to look forward to and work towards.
Outside of work, I'm almost always with friends. They are what energizes me. So, I’m likely either going out with them or exploring new places. When on vacation, I like to travel on my own or with family and friends. In the past five years, I went to Switzerland, France, Boston and Texas for the first time. Some of my favorite memories are snowboarding in Aspen and visiting the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington DC to understand my history more.
Through various audio streaming and media service providers, I’ve been listening to a wide range of music from all over the world, especially indie music, hip-hop, or RNB.
My advice would be: know that you’re going to make a lot of mistakes, which is how you learn and don't be afraid to ask questions. There's no such thing as dumb questions. The only dumb question is the one you didn’t ask when you needed to, which then causes you to scramble down the road and produce inefficient work. Lastly, work hard and play hard – make sure that you’re enjoying your life since time is short.