In 2014, I graduated from Indiana University, as they say, “without a purpose or direction.” This led me on a quest to find an opportunity for myself. I knew I was willing to work hard doing just about anything, but I wanted to work for a company I could invest myself in. So, I hung up a map of the United States in my room and started applying everywhere and putting pins on the cities I applied to. With no direction in mind, I searched for the best places to work in various cities. As a result, eventually, I found netlogx, a three- or four-time winner of the Best Places to Work in Indiana at the time. After a few interviews, I had the job!
Starting in the IT industry, I had no idea what I was doing, so taking notes as a Project Coordinator was a great place to start. Next, I was able to sit in high-level meetings with executives at netlogx and at client sites, making connections and learning the talk of the trade. Then I had the opportunity of a lifetime to travel to Santa Fe and work for the State of New Mexico on the Medicaid Management Information System and Child Support Enforcement System Replacement project. While there, I had the opportunity to assist in requirements elicitation and business process mapping. While intimidating, I found the work satisfying and welcomed the chance to try new things.
My next big project was working for the State of Indiana, assisting the Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) with the redesign and procurement of their technology landscape. I assisted in procuring a handful of different services and learned the ins and outs of state government procurement. I saw many different vendor proposals and started writing proposals for netlogx. As the BMV project wound down, I obtained my Project Management Professional (PMP) certification and had the opportunity to lead a procurement project of my own. I had found my niche.
Over the course of the next two years, I led four procurement projects and honed my project management skills on system implementation and construction projects at a local hospital. But I wasn’t satisfied with that. Looking for my next opportunity, I eventually found myself at a Supply Chain Consulting firm, managing large IT infrastructure projects for the company and developing my IT chops.
I’ll never forget, right before leaving netlogx, my mentor told me, “You’re going to get bored working for a company doing internal Project Management. You’re going to find yourself back in the consulting world”. I took her words with a grain of salt, but truer words have never been spoken to me. I missed the variety and excitement of consulting.
Within two weeks of interviewing, netlogx found me and asked if I would be interested in returning. I said of course! I learned that netlogx had won the Best Places to Work award for a reason now that I had something new to compare it to and was ecstatic to come back home. In many ways, it’s as though I never left, although my experience in the corporate world definitely taught me some valuable lessons and showed me that just because the grass is always greener, that doesn’t mean it’s always sweeter.
I’m glad to be back and with more opportunities than I ever had before. I just can’t wait to see what’s around the next corner for myself and netlogx.