Hi Loretta, thank you for taking the time to share. So - where did you grow up and what did you want to be when “you grew up”?
I was born in Westminster, Colorado. My family moved to Berthoud, Colorado, where we lived until I was about 12 years old. We then moved to a very small town in Nebraska, called Alma. I lived there until I graduated from high school. My class was the largest graduating class with a whopping 38 students!! I then moved back to Greeley, Colorado, where I attended the University of Northern Colorado, where I pursued a degree in Nursing. When I was younger, I used to want to be a teacher. However, as I grew older, I grew less interested in that particular field.
38 students- wow! Did you ever pursue a career in Nursing? Also, what roles did you have before joining Valet Living?
No, I never pursued a career in Nursing. After my first year at UNC, my parents divorced, and I moved in with my mother and transferred to Front Range Community College in Westminster, Colorado. I worked as an Assistant Manager at a Good Times restaurant, and part time in a King Soopers Bakery. I stayed there for a couple of years. Then I moved on to Sam's Club, where I worked different positions, till I moved up as a department head over the seasonal department. After I had my son, I left Sam's Club and went on to Home Depot. I stayed there for the next seven years. I started out as an overnight Freight Associate and worked my way up to Assistant Manager.
Retail seems like such a great training ground for our District Managers. Tell us what is a day in the life of a District Manager and what aspect do you enjoy the most?
A day in the life as a District Manager can definitely be a bit crazy at times, but that is what I love about it! I start out my day with my normal administrative tasks such as pulling iValet reports and payroll. I answer all emails that have come in before I head out the door to visit my communities. What I enjoy the most is the relationships I have built with my communities and my Service Valets. They are always genuinely glad to see me when I come in. I have been in my current district for about two years now, and over that time, I have made great connections with the managers and staff on all my sites, and I thoroughly enjoy our visits. The same with all of my Service Valets. I like connecting with them, getting to know them, and feeling like I make a difference for them, in one way or another.
Your “day in the life” is a good reminder that we are in the people business. Also, how do you plan to set the standard going forward?
As we transition to Valet Living it changes the view of my role because I want to become the person my peers turn to for guidance. I want to set the standard by teaching our newer District Managers in Denver, our culture and what sets apart from the competition and what makes us the best out there. Now, I have been with the company for four and half years, and I have learned a lot of wonderful things along the way. I would love to share with my peers, how some of my successes and failures along my journey have brought me to where I am today.
Thanks again for this opportunity Loretta. One more question. If you had one piece of advice for our senior leadership team what might that be?
My advice to them would be to continue creating more roles starting with the Service Valets. I would love to see some positions that create excitement, competitiveness, and loyalty among the Service Valets that work for us. It would help develop career paths for the best of the best and give Service Valets additional opportunities to delight the customer. Also, these positions could potentially lead up to District Manager positions down the road.