A Day in the Life – Yvonne
What is your title? Describe what you do.
I am the Technical Solutions Group (TSG) Resource Manager. I have many responsibilities within CSCI and to the TSG, some of which are to manage projects for which my team members are assigned; and ensure required Corporate processes are running smoothly within the group. However, my most important responsibility is to ensure team members gain skills in their professional development career path and know the teams’ skills, strengths, and weaknesses to be able to match each team member to the right project opportunity that arises. Another main objective is keeping the team as a close-knit group that works together towards a common goal of providing superior service that sets us apart.
What drew you to CSCI? Why did you choose to work here? How was the switch for you?
CSCI seemed like a company that put effort into their employees and the people. I interviewed with long-term employees, which gave me a sense of stability in the world of contractor head shops.
I have been with CSCI for 20 years, so the switch happened many years ago. Twenty years ago, I worked for a very small, 10-person company and the time had come to close shop after about 8 years in the business. It was a perfect transition from an uber small company that truly cared about the work they were doing for their clients to one that was bigger, with similar core values.
What makes CSCI different than your previous workplaces?
CSCI values its employees and puts its mission to their clients at the forefront of everything they do. Employees are an investment, and the company becomes a home for employees to set their roots down and truly bloom and grow.
What do you like best about working at CSCI?
I love my job, I love working with people, and love making a difference in the trajectory of both projects and employees’ career paths.
What is an example of a success story you have had at CSCI? How did you achieve success on that project or endeavor?
I came to CSCI as a junior software developer, and over the years, I have been able to move to team leadership and group leadership and have ended up where I am today with a 28-member group that continues to grow. Key to success? Work ethic, dedication, and commitment to yourself, your team, your leaders, and your company. Believe in the mission, believe in the people, and make it your own mission to settle for nothing but the best you can give.
What advice would you give to someone looking to pursue a role like yours? Are there specific character traits or skills/certifications you should possess?
Have any experience firefighting?! You must be lively on your feet and ready to pivot from challenge to challenge. You must have excellent interpersonal and communication skills and be the support system that sits behind the curtain to ensure your team members are shining their brightest in the limelight. You should have keen observational skills and must be able to employ out-of-the-box thinking for daily problem solving. Obtaining certifications like PMP, Agile, and Scrum are good for putting your brain into process-oriented thinking.
What’s on your playlist when you’re focusing on a project at work and when you travel?
Oh boy, I have a range, honestly. When I need real focus, I go for movie scores, or nature sounds, but I’ll also do coffee shop classic rock, singer/songwriter, or folk music for general work. I tend to choose chill music for working. When I need an energy boost, I’ll choose reggaetón/Latin music or heavy metal/hard rock.
What has helped you stay focused during this pandemic remote work situation? How have you adapted professionally?
I have been fortunate enough during the pandemic to continue to have a lot of work to do and to be able to continue to stay busy. I’d say my transition to remote work has included developing a routine of getting up, making my bed, getting fully dressed, and getting my habitual cup of morning tea before sitting down at my desk. Routine and habit in the morning puts me into “work mode” at home.
When things get closer to normal, what is the first thing you want to do that you cannot do right now?
I have, in previous years, done an annual Holiday party to maintain the group’s sense of “team” and give everyone a break from the hard work they do. When things get back to normal, I’d like to explore a way to bring the group together again for in-person team-building activities.
How will this unprecedented time change your perspective?
I have changed my view of how difficult it might be to manage a group of people who work remotely. We’ve managed to stay in tune with team members by maintaining regularly scheduled team meetings to share challenges, workload, project information, and training goals.