NW Staffing Employee Interview: Regional Branch Manager, Kristen McConnell
We’re back with another employee spotlight this month. You may have had the pleasure of meeting Kristen McConnell if you’ve worked with the Portland Branch. This fall, she transitioned to Regional Branch Manager, overseeing and splitting her time between both the Portland Branch and the Beaverton Branch. If you are lucky enough to work with her, we know you’ll love her as much as we do!
You have quite a tenure at NW Staffing. Why NW Staffing? What has made this a place that you want to go to everyday for work?
I do! I’ve grown up here really. I could not imagine working at another staffing company – our reputation, initiatives and values make us a great partner for our clients and employees. The people we work with, the variety in our days, the clients and employees we work with along with some really great stories make coming to work fun.
What are three things you love most about working in staffing? What are three things that feel challenging about working in staffing?
I love seeing the different client worksites – it’s like we get to go on fieldtrips all the time! I love knowing that at the end of the day we have likely solved someone’s problem and made their life a bit better. And I love the opportunity to meet so many different people – learn about their careers, their personal lives and how we can help them.
The challenges are the lack of available talent due to the low unemployment rates combined with low pay rates at some clients make it harder than it needs to be to find candidates. And, when your “product” is people – you never know what the day may bring.
How have you seen this industry evolve?
I feel our industry has come a long way in being less of a commodity and more of a resource and value to our clients. We now partner more rather than just working for our clients and our employees see the benefit of being represented by a staffing company. We network more with others in our industry to build relationships with companies that can support our clients’ hiring needs that we can’t. And of course, technology. When I started it was all paper and rolling bins of candidate files – the candidate experience is much more interactive than it has ever been thanks to the different tools we have to communicate with them.
What advice would you give your 20-year-old self when it comes to your career?
Try at least 4 different kinds of “real” jobs before settling on a career. You learn more, you learn HOW to learn new things, you are more challenged, and you have more to bring to the table than just one thing.
What’s some of the best advice you’ve received from someone else about work, careers, etc.?
Be nice first, make money second. Being nice, brings in the money. Persistence should be consistent but always pleasant and it’s ok to fake it until you make it – but don’t lie or cheat to get there.
What do you love doing in your free time?
Spending time at home – in my yard or tackling some kind of house project with my husband. Absorbing the time with my daughters that all too soon will be limited because they will be driving and then heading off to college in a couple years.
Finally, what is one personal goal you have for yourself in 2020?
To place safe teenage drivers on the road that are confident, aware and prevents me from having to stay up so late to pick them up from an event!
Ready to have Kristen or one of our other seasoned employees tackle your staffing need? Reach out to us here to connect to the branch closest to you.