#Avanade20Years: Why I choose to stick with Avanade
- Posted on April 20, 2020
- Estimated reading time 3 minutes
I have started to write this article multiple times, but I kept getting stuck searching for words and stopped. As Avanade celebrates its 20th anniversary, my intention was to explain what has kept me here at Avanade for 12 years. But right now, there are a lot of distractions, and in such a fast-moving situation, I’m finding it can be hard to concentrate. So, let's try again.
Honestly, when I joined I thought I might make it to two years, perhaps five, here at Avanade. It was the biggest company I had ever worked for, and I didn’t think the large corporate environment would necessarily suit me. But here I am 12 years later and looking forward to my “teenage” years with Avanade.
Like many of us who have been at Avanade for a long time, I have seen my career develop and grow. For a large part of my career, I worked as an executive assistant, supporting senior leaders that have included Adam Warby and Pam Maynard, our previous and current CEOs. I remember Pam once offered me career advice that I have kept with me ever since: “Be bold.” When my current boss, CHRO Dave Gartenberg offered me the chance to move into HR operations and communications, Pam's words rang in my head. I took the leap and have not looked back.
Over 12 years, Avanade has seen me through me of life's milestone moments and challenges. To fulfill our hope of being parents, my husband and I looked toward adoption. In the U.K., adopting a child is a long and uncertain process. It can be an emotional roller-coaster. So, imagine my surprise, when during all this uncertainty, I was asked if I would support Adam in the office of the CEO. Adam already knew about my plans to adopt, and he knew that if I became his EA, my uncertainty would become his uncertainty. In the end, I worked with Adam for nine months and gained the most amazing experience working at CEO level before becoming mum to my two fabulous girls.
Ever since returning to work, I've had nothing but the most incredible support from all my subsequent bosses, including last week, when I had to drop my work for a week and focus to settle my family as the U.K. started its shutdown. I don’t take for granted that my boss reacted the way he did. He could have made me feel guilty or made things difficult for me, but he didn’t. He told me to put my family first.
And so, when the world is in the grip of the most unsettling of times, my family and I tap into what makes us grateful. One of those things is working for a company that really does live by its values and is actively doing things to help employees feel confident and cared for. I'm grateful that I work for an organisation where its CEO who – when faced with the most extraordinary of times – took her own advice and chose a bold approach by providing job security and a paid flexible working approach for everyone at Avanade during Q3.
Many of us need to feel secure in these troubled times as we try to balance the needs of ourselves, our loved ones, our communities and our clients. In its 20th year, Avanade is once again demonstrating its commitment to me, my colleagues and those closest to us. I, for one, intend to stick around and repay that support.