It’s All About the Pro-Employee Environment for John
When John Leete wanted to move back to California from Denver, it was his experience in the IT industry that helped him land a job as a Systems Administrator with Accent Computer Solutions. It wasn’t until some 100 days later, however, that he realized how very fortunate he was to become a part of an organization that was not only welcoming and supportive, but overwhelmingly pro-employee.
“I got the job, got trained and got rolling and then I realized that this wasn’t really what I wanted to do,” said John. “I had done network administrator work for a number of years and I just didn’t feel that this was the right path for me anymore.”
Management Was Approachable and Eager to Find the Right Fit
In John’s previous work experience, having that sinking feeling that he wasn’t doing what he wanted to do would make him look for the exit door, but his three months at Accent was long enough for him to know that management wouldn’t respond with animosity if he shared his desire to take on a different role at the company.
“I went to Corey and told him that I thought I was better suited for a different position and I knew there was a spot open for a Technology Advisor,” said John. “Corey was very responsive to this and I was able to transfer over to that position. I know that Accent had invested time and training for me to fill the Systems Administrator role, but I think they saw my potential and figured it was worth the continued investment. I don’t think that happens at a lot of companies.”
Keeping Sight of Technology Through the Client’s Eyes
Walk with John through a day in his life as a Technology Advisor and you’ll see that his skills as a communicator are just as important as his technical expertise. He’s responsible for interacting with clients at the C-level to help them understand what their technology is doing and identify ways to improve security and functionality, and to leverage technology in new ways.
John has always loved working with computers and different technologies. Now that he works with clients on the executive level, he’s gained a fresh perspective about IT. As he’s meeting with clients to discuss reports or working with them on planning and budgeting, he consciously looks at everything through the client’s eyes to keep their needs and objectives in sight.
Pro-Employee Support from Management is Refreshing
As with any job, there can be ups and downs. John recalls a situation in his first months as a Technology Advisor when a client voiced some concerns. That's an uncomfortable situation for anyone, especially if you carry a lot of responsibility for the relationship on your shoulders. Accent’s owner, Marty Kaufman, however, knows that there are two sides to every story, and he made sure that he got John’s take on the situation. This was yet another clear signal to John that he was working for the right company.
“Management has been very pro-employee and willing to go that extra mile to support our people,” said John. “They are also very transparent, which is refreshing. They’ll take time to discuss decisions with me which makes me feel valued.”
Company is Generous with Recognition and Perks
John says that at Accent’s monthly “All Hands” meetings, Marty is very open and direct as he shares what’s going on with the company, including any changes that are being made or new initiatives that will be launched. “All Hands” is also a time for employee recognition, and John recalls a time when he got a public “atta boy” from the owner.
“I was working directly with the CFO of a brand new client to get everything up and running, and their systems documented. It was quite a mess and their outgoing IT people were very, very difficult to work with,” said John. “The owner of the company called Marty and wanted to meet for lunch along with the CFO, and myself. I didn’t know what to expect but it turned out that they wanted to express their appreciation for our work and how I was handling the relationship.”
John is in his fourth year with Accent so he’s not surprised anymore when he experiences or observes the unique pro-employee culture that has been built here. Whether it’s free lunch on Fridays or an open invitation to provide suggestions for company improvement, for John it’s all about the environment and about management giving back to the employees who are working in the trenches every day.
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About Courtney Casey
In an industry dominated by men, Courtney Casey, Director of Marketing for Accent Computer Solutions, Inc., is making her mark on the world of information technology. Courtney has been immersed in the IT field most of her life and has been molded into the tech savvy expert she is today. She began working for Accent while earning her Bachelor's degree from California State University, Long Beach. Known in the Inland Empire as the "Tech Girl," Courtney is a regular columnist for the region's newspaper of record, The Press-Enterprise. Her columns address topical news trends, new technology products, and offer advice on how to embrace technology or avoid common IT pitfalls.