On the day I graduated with a degree in computer programming, I asked out loud, “Who would want to spend eight or more hours a day in a cubicle doing this?” However, this training was instrumental to the work I would pursue — customer service. Programmers, developers and designers all have a different language they use and a different understanding of a situation. Therefore, different groups within an organization, as well as customers, do not always understand each other or how to process requests. This was the challenge I accepted — translation. I spent many years working with programmers and developers to help them understand what the internal support groups and customers needed. While I have had many different roles, including supervisor, project manager, accounts payable and benefit specialist, each have allowed me the opportunity to work with and help internal and external customers. I simply put myself in the shoes of the other person and try to see the situation from their perspective.
Many years ago, my perseverance to help others with whatever their situation earned me a nickname — Mary Poppins. While I do not own a carpetbag, I am addicted to cool umbrellas.
An umbrella enthusiast, Jennifer had over 200 umbrella’s in her collection, but not enough rainy days to warrant having them. With this in mind, she packed up and moved to England where she could hopefully enjoy upwards of 15 rainy days per month. With her collection in tow, she shipped off to Jolly Old England. Soon after arriving, Jennifer was walking past an antique shop on London’s East End and saw the most amazing, parrot-handled umbrella. She was instantly reminded of her favorite childhood movie and rushed in to buy the umbrella. The clerk, who was rather cheeky, looked Jennifer up and down and said, “It’s not for sale. Good day.” Incredulous, Jennifer said she had to have it and offered to trade her entire umbrella collection for this one. The clerk again looked her up and down and replied, “If this ain’t no porky pie, let me jump on the dog and bone and see what the owner has to say.” Because it wasn’t a lie and after a short phone call with the shop owner, the clerk returned. “They prefer bees and honey, but would you Adam and Eve it, they say you got yourself a jellied eel.” … Completely confused, Jennifer was pretty sure this meant they accepted her offer and she handed over her collection. As she walked out of the shop and down the street, she made several other stops until she had a new hat, coat, skirt, shoes and carpet bag: everything she needed for living out her childhood dream of being the next great Mary Poppins.
No longer needing to stay in England for the weather, Jennifer popped back across the pond and returned home. With her prized umbrella in hand, Jennifer is always happy to be the first person with whom you speak when calling PPA. If that isn’t supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, then we don’t know what is.