Let’s meet Rachel
My name is Rachel and I have been Wonoloing since 2017. 🙂 I am a market manager overseeing customer operations in Nashville, TN. In my role, I do many things, but overall my responsibility is to drive marketplace health through cultivating strong partnerships with businesses and servicing their needs so that our Wonoloers continue to have access to great job opportunities in their area.
What are you grateful for today?
I am grateful for many things in my life: Wonolo, which gives me the opportunity to fulfill my personal goal of helping people every day. Working for Wonolo has changed my life in countless ways. My friends, who make me feel more seen and heard. All of the memories I have from what has been a very fun and exciting life so far. But I am most grateful for my parents, who gave up many of their own dreams and desires so that my brothers and I could lead the lives we have today. I inherited their work ethic, grit, intelligence, and compassion, plus their love for great music. I work hard every day to make them proud, and hopefully, someday I’ll give back to them a little of what they have given me over the years.
When you were in high school, what did you dream of becoming?
I was the editor in chief of my school newspaper and started off college as a journalism major. I’ve always dreamed of driving change in the world to help those in need, and I thought writing about important issues could be a great way to do that.
What events in your life have led you to your current role/job today?
I ended up graduating from college with a BA in sociology and had NO idea what I wanted to do with my life. The only thing I knew for sure is that I wanted to make a positive impact on the world and work in a field where I could help improve people’s lives.
I thought about working in the non-profit sector, but many roles I saw required additional (and expensive) schooling or many years of experience. I ended up working in the service industry supervising a small bustling cafe in the north beach district of San Francisco. What I thought would be a few months of “finding myself” (oh, to be young again) quickly turned into three years.
I finally hit my breaking point making only a little over minimum wage in expensive San Francisco, and I realized I needed to overcome the pressure I felt to choose a career path. I decided I needed to try something different, get my foot in the door and expose myself to opportunities that I maybe would not be aware of otherwise.
In my job search, I liked that tech start-ups seemed to prioritize hiring people who are hard-working, who are willing to learn as they go, and who believe in the mission of a company, as opposed to the number of years of experience on a resume. I came across the concept of on-demand work and something clicked. Having been in the service industry feeling the pain of being understaffed, as well as someone who was underemployed (I had a full-time job but wasn’t making enough to pay my bills), I was inspired. I got my foot in the door, worked tirelessly to learn the ropes, and then eventually joined Wonolo – an incredible company that gives me the opportunity to help people daily.
During my three years in the service industry after college, I felt a little stuck and overwhelmed by choosing a path. Looking back, I am so thankful for the personal journey I’ve had. During that time I acquired two traits that have been invaluable in my career and make me who I am.
The first is hustle – it didn’t matter how many people called out sick or what types of issues were happening in the back of the house if you had a line of customers out the door, you had to keep working until the very end. It’s not about whose job is whose, you are a team and you get things done. I have deep appreciation and gratitude for Requestors, Wonoloers, and everyone out there hustling every day!
The second is my obsession with providing amazing customer service. Whether I’m serving a perfect latte or providing a Requestor with the number of extra workers they need to meet their goals, there is nothing quite like the rush of providing a service to someone in need. It’s an amazing feeling to go above and beyond for customers and watch them come back again and again.
When things do not turn out the way you planned, what is the first thing you do?
They so rarely do! The first thing I do is talk with a colleague or friend to hash it out. I have an amazing support system filled with many smart people. I do not hesitate to rely on them for feedback and advice. I’ll also be the first to laugh at myself a little bit to release stress and tension. Life is no fun if it’s taken too seriously!
When you have to make a difficult decision, what do you lean on?
I am actually super indecisive! Making decisions has always been tough for me because the thought of making the wrong decision is sometimes unbearable. It’s often paralyzing for me to think about what I could be missing out on if I don’t pick the right door.
Decision making is something I work on every single day. As I’ve grown in my career, professional decisions have grown easier but personal ones are still pretty tough. The two things I lean on the most are one – you can’t be afraid to break things. Working for a start-up has been a great teacher in that regard. If something doesn’t work, you can always pivot, adjust, and tweak until you get it right.
The second thing I lean on is confidence in myself. I’ve made it this far, and I’m in a pretty great place. I’ve made many good decisions in my life, and the poor decisions I’ve made have been opportunities to learn. It’s all lead me here, and future decisions I make will take me where I’m going.
What is one piece of life advice you can give to anyone?
The last few years of my life have been defined by transition. I have faced immense change both professionally and personally. I have moved multiple times from San Francisco to Dallas, and then here to Nashville. There is a quote that really resonates with me that says, “Wherever you go, there you are.” There was a time that I thought changing relationships, jobs or even cities would make me the person I wanted to become. What I’ve learned is that personal growth comes from within – problems will follow you wherever you go, and running away from them doesn’t work.
Now I don’t seek change in order to run away, I welcome change because I know that I have myself to fall back on and I am strong enough to face life head-on. Wherever I go now, there I am – and that is a good thing. Stability, happiness, and fulfillment don’t come from a person, a place, or a career – it comes from yourself, and that is powerful.
Please finish this sentence: If you really knew me, you would know that ______.
I rarely say no – whether it’s helping a coworker with a problem, taking on a new responsibility, dropping everything to fly to see a friend, or going out for a night on the town. I usually pick up whatever life is putting down. Life is too short not to soak up every chance it gives you to do some living!