Narrated by Nafissa Kharkamni
On April 1st, I had the opportunity to meet Susan to briefly talk about her journey in Chillibreeze and any messages she would like to share through her story. Coincidentally, it was right around the time she completed 12 years of working with Chillibreeze. I am pleased to share the excerpts from our conversation.
Susan’s life before Chillibreeze
Growing up, she stayed and was taken care of under her aunt's wings. Her parents passed away while she was just a toddler. In most cases, many would assume it would be challenging for certain people under such circumstances; however, it was just the opposite for her. Surprisingly, she felt she always had it easy. During her school days, as she was uninterested and laid back at joining a regular school, she opted to join an evening school. As a person, she rarely interacts with her family, and “being responsible“ was entirely an alien concept.
Her biggest challenge when she first joined Chillibreeze
When I asked whether it has been challenging working in Chillibreeze. With a sigh of relief, Susan said, “A challenge? Yes, but it was also a blessing in disguise. “When she joined Chillibreeze as an Office Assistant, there was another lady who had been working for the same role. Given that she has her own family, she could not manage her responsibilities; hence, she took many leaves and was irregular to work. This impacted her performance, and when she left, Chillibreeze was immensely impacted and temporarily lost trust in married women.
After this episode, this then became a challenge for Susan because Chillibreeze was skeptical of hiring married women for the role. At that time, Susan was starting a new family of her own. Despite this, she pushed herself each day to meet expectations and perform well in her role. She would come to the office early and executed her daily task responsibly. She understands that one of the Principles of Chillibreeze is Discipline, and she practices it in her everyday life to the extent that she got an award for good performance. Her understanding and aim of securing her job motivated her even more. Ultimately, it was a blessing!
After joining Chillibreeze, changes that impacted her
Once she joined Chillibreeze, her learning skyrocketed. She experiences an enormous amount of growth, both personally and professionally.
From a professional aspect, she cannot imagine that a person who has not completed her 10th standard would get introduced to computer learnings, technical tools, book learnings, participating in meetings, etc. With excitement clinging to her voice, she said, “I can now contribute to the team with ideas, provide feedback, hold team members accountable, and connect directly with vendors. “
From a personal aspect, she can support her family financially, and the best part is, she can be a role model to her children because of her sincere hard work. Her eldest son is very disciplined. She continuously teaches her children through her words and actions. “I hope they can replicate my positive behaviors, “Susan added.
Her perspective on her current responsibilities
I asked her if she is happy with her current responsibilities? She excitedly responds, "A 100% YES. "
Her reason is that she gets that sense of ownership to create her path that serves others to her best. She added, "There is a huge joy knowing I am a crucial part of the company's success."
After 12 years working with Chillibreeze, what keeps her motivated?
Susan smiled, "Simple! It is the people and the work culture." Well, it seems that no matter how many people say this, it will never get old.
She shared that team members are always helpful, and many played a key role in grooming her to where she is right now. In terms of the working culture, she is continuously being challenged by new responsibilities and learnings. Some of the deeply ingrained learnings are the lessons from 2 books, namely: Regenerative Business and Conscious Business.
Her perspective on displaying sincere care for others
Susan is driven by the idea that she can help people work efficiently and effectively through her sincere care and service by making it easy for them. For instance, by cleaning their workstations daily, she ensures that team members are working in a good and hygienic environment to give their best and contribute to the company's success.
"I always find joy in serving others," Susan concluded.
Her long-term aspiration
Susan aspires that Chillibreeze will grow to a thousand more employees one day. Therefore, she aspires to lead a team and make an even more significant impact on the company. She raises the bar for her journey in Chillibreeze to continuously progress by embracing new challenges and overcoming them.
Her perspective on loyalty
Her years of service in itself are a definition of loyalty. She is deeply connected to our mission statement, and she is committed to supporting it. She understands that being here is impacting the very mission of the company. If she leaves, she knows that she will hurt that purpose; therefore, she strives through and perseveres in the face of any challenges.
Lastly, her message to all of us through her story
Through this story and her journey so far, she is NOT advocating that being in Chillibreeze is easy. She added, "It would be silly for me to say that it is easy ".
Susan believes that Chillibreeze is not for everyone. She wants people to know that doing what others are not willing or able to do is never easy. Therefore, she urges everyone to keep on “persevering so that we can keep our purpose alive."