If you could teach a college class, what would it be called? And what would it cover?
It would about financial wellness/literacy. My son recently went off to college, and we realized we hadn’t really prepared him for the reality of student loans, managing a budget and expenses. Part of our research on payroll and employees tells that only 57 percent of U.S. are financially literate, so financial stress is a reality. And providing young adults with insights and tools can help them create a successful financial future.
What is your secret vice?
Well, it is a not-so-secret vice – chocolate. I must have a candy bar or something sweet at around 3:30 p.m. to make it through the day. I may do my best thinking on a sugar rush.
What is the best business advice you have ever received?
“Look after your team.” Although personal success matters, the success of your team matters more. Creating a happy, engaging and supportive environment is one of the most important things you can offer as a leader. You are only as good as the team, and your team members are happy and enjoying the journey, they will not only work harder but smarter.
What is your favorite place in the world to visit?
The ocean. We are a scuba diving family, which allows us to visit amazing places all over the world. We have dived through a statue village in Playa del Carmen, with reef sharks (too many for my liking) in Turks and Caicos, and even through a shipwreck in the Mediterranean. The best part is talking about our adventures and knowing we will have great memories for a lifetime.
What is the hardest thing you’ve ever done?
Dropping my son off at college this past fall and not losing it in front of him. He turned into this wonderful, thoughtful and intellectually curious chap in his last two years of high school, and I felt just when it was getting interesting and fun to have deep conversations and talk about the world, he was off. I am grateful he is only 3 hours away at the University of Alabama, and so he comes home to visit us (in Atlanta) often.
What is the smartest marketing, communications or PR thing you’ve ever done?
First Data’s Connected Magazine. I am not sure it’s the smartest but it’s the thing I am most proud of. The first issue of Connected debuted in early 2017, and we wrote it in a journalistic style rather than marketing-speak. It helped establish First Data as a thought-leader and technology innovator in the industry, as well as showcased the solutions the company provides. We’ve published three editions so far, won 3 Midas Awards and are up for more this year! Another great feature aspect of Connected is that every person on my team participated in its creation and success.
Who is the person you most admire?
Winston Churchill. He is a hero of mine, and I love reading some of his quotes because they make me roar with laughter and often make me think. Google funny Winston Churchill quotes sometime.
If you weren’t in your current profession, what would you be?
I’d love to have been a photographer at a fashion or lifestyle magazine. I greatly admire Grace Coddington, the creative director of (U.S.) Vogue. She always has the most creative and provocative photo shoot spreads in Vogue. Every one is a work of art.
Eight questions with… is an occasional series where we ask marketers to share a little of their professional and personal insights. To suggest someone you’d like us to ask eight questions – or to answer them yourself! – go to https://arketi.com/8questions.