The Final Word / Conversations with Extraordinary People
Give a quick synopsis of your professional background.
I earned my journalism degree from Grady College at The University of Georgia and have reinvented my career path three times. Beginning in public relations, I pivoted to talent acquisition before landing firmly in management consulting for the bulk of my career. Throughout my consulting career, I have led and delivered a variety of strategic projects for clients across the automotive, hospitality, financial services, entertainment, and software sectors. I give back through involvement in community organizations dedicated to advancing women and championing individuals with different abilities. Lastly, I’m a professional photographer and author of “Spark Acceptance.”
You left Jabian and decided to come back. What drew you back?
I left Jabian to pursue an opportunity to truly own product transformation, an opportunity that wouldn’t have been possible in consulting. After a couple of years in the industry, I came to appreciate the variety of experiences that consulting provides. The thrill of advising various clients, with different people from project to project, and accelerated leadership growth opportunities were things that I missed. Most importantly, though, what really drew me back was the remarkable culture cultivated by the people at Jabian.
It’s also a cool full-circle moment for me, as I volunteered with Literacy Action back in 2014–2015 as a facilitator of English conversation classes with adult immigrants. I then participated in United Way’s VIP Board training program in 2021, which was a great experience to learn how to be an effective Board member and support our community.
"Having earned trust, I can help my clients make meaningful improvements to their work, their teams, and their own personal or professional growth.”
You recently wrote a book, “Spark Acceptance.” Tell me about the inspiration behind it and what’s next.
“Spark Acceptance” was inspired by my personal journey as a mother to a daughter diagnosed on the autism spectrum. The whirlwind of emotions and thoughts that accompanied this journey often remained unshared on social media, yet something was stirring in me to give others a glimpse into our world, to unveil the challenges my husband and I grappled with, particularly in those early years. I just knew other parents had similar experiences and likely wished for their unique perspectives to be understood. And so, the idea for “Spark Acceptance” was born. I matched my love of photography and the desire to shed light on the challenges faced by individuals who are differently-abled. The book serves as a platform for celebrating exceptional people and provides perspectives for those who don’t yet understand the depth of their daily challenges.
What’s your personal platform and how have you been able to make it a reality?
I’ve built a personal platform and established a reputation for leading transformational change, especially in product management and customer experiences — you can see the articles I’ve written in the Jabian Journal over the years reflect that. While I have developed deep expertise in these areas, I’ve been recognized within Jabian as a “utility player” who can plug into a variety of client situations and be trusted to deliver real business results.
What’s the most important thing you do for your clients?
I find making meaningful connections incredibly powerful and fulfilling. Establishing trust with my clients is what’s most important to me. Having earned trust, I can help my clients make meaningful improvements to their work, their teams, and their own personal or professional growth.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve been given?
Ambitious people on the journey to achieving something great often draw their inspiration from others. While it’s valuable to be inspired by others, and set goals based on their successes, it’s crucial to avoid falling into the ‘comparison trap’ along that journey. The best advice I’ve been given, and frequently impart, is this: Don’t compare yourself to anyone except for your former self, whether that former self existed yesterday, last week, last month, or last year.