Awards and Humility
Writing a blog post about winning an award may seem counterintuitive to any notion of humility…but I assure you we will get there. As I have grown in my profession, I have personally seen times of peaks and valleys in recognition in general. As I look back on it, it makes a lot of sense as my level of engagement with my career seemed to ebb and flow with what was going on in my life. While I always enjoyed the accolades (and on occasion the financial incentive), I will honestly say that I never gave much thought to the award and the criteria itself. At times, I felt like a child who had received a birthday card with a $20 bill in it…never even read the card but thanked everyone and moved on down the road. But this year has been a year of great emotional growth for me, and even at 46 years old, I have found myself overcome with humility.
I joined Netsync Network Solutions in August of 2015. I was hired to be a Regional Engineering Manager in an industry and space of which I had never been a part. Netsync is a VAR and technology integrator and I had historically worked on the customer side of that equation. I was welcomed onboard and bequeathed one of the best engineering teams and one of the best technician teams for me to influence, and in some instances, for them to influence me. Additionally, I was introduced to several leaders that had been with Netsync and been a part of its incredible growth: one of those leaders was Deb Newman. I had the opportunity to work directly with Deb on a few occasions, but her name came up in almost all things we were working on. As I got to know her, I witnessed her tireless efforts to make Netsync a better place for our customers and our associates. While others on our team had much more experience and time with her, I was able to build a quick and honest respect for who she was and what she did.
Unfortunately, for Netsync and her family, Deb passed away in August of 2016. While I had only known her for 1 year, it impacted me because Netsync is a family and the sudden nature of it gave me pause to reflect on just how precious the moments are that we have on this Earth. I mourned her loss and prayed for her family. Be that as it may, our lives at Netsync continued. I know that the things we began to accomplish in 2016 can be largely attributed to the leaders that were at Netsync prior to my arrival, and that includes Deb. As we grew as a company, we achieved things and started to do things differently and as 2016 closed we prepared for a trajectory that would see us achieve unprecedented growth over the next 5 years. With great care and thought, our leadership recognized an opportunity to commemorate Deb and her commitment and passion for making Netsync better. At the end of 2016, Netsync saw the inception of the Deb Newman – Heart of Netsync Award. V The honor would be bestowed upon an individual, voted on by the Netsync associates at large, that embodied the characteristics and passion that Deb exuded during her time here. Deb’s legacy would be memorialized annually and preserved on plaque at the company headquarters. While every year the presentation of the award is emotional, the first few years were especially so, as Deb’s daughter was on-hand to present. The honorees to date have been so deserving:
2016- Tiffany Hutto
2017- Cory Hopf
2018 – Michelle Moncayo
2018 – Taylor Poole
I have been lucky enough to work with each of these individuals and truly believe that the recognition bestowed upon them is so aptly placed. Two weeks ago, at the culmination of our 2020 Sales Kickoff, our leadership team was preparing to award the 2019 honoree. It’s the final award of the session, and as they read down the accomplishments and finally the name, I was truly confronted with the definition of humility as they read my name. Choking back emotion, I fumbled through some words and thanked the company and did my best to give homage to Deb. The unexpected nature of the event had, against all possibilities, left me basically speechless. After reflecting a bit, I decided to put my thoughts down for all to see. These passages are my attempt to first of thank Deb, for leaving behind a legacy that gives each of us something to strive toward. Your example will allow us to continually pave the way for those that follow in our footsteps here at Netsync. To those listed above, who have carried that legacy through, thanks for all each of you do and being a shining example of leadership in all that you do. To my Netsync family, thanks for your continued support and bestowing an incredible honor on me. While I feel that there are candidates who I see that are more deserving, I truly appreciate your confidence and belief in me. Just know that I could not be who I am without the support of each of you. Humbly yours, Shannon.