Tammi Heaton, COO of PrideStaff
Years in staffing: 18
Fun fact: PrideStaff was a client of Tammi’s within the insurance and risk arena before she was recruited to spearhead their efforts internally. In the late 1990’s, it was also a tumultuous time for the industry as it relates to insurance and risk. Despite the climate, Tammi spearheaded PrideStaff’s first entry into an alternative market quickly after she joined in 1997. This was the first of many firsts that highlight Tammi’s trailblazing spirit.
I was especially excited to chat with Tammi about industry insights in the wake of two outstanding achievements for Tammi and PrideStaff that were announced in the last two weeks. Tammi was honored on SIA’s inaugural Global Power 100 list of leading women in staffing, and PrideStaff was ranked #48 on SIA’s list of fastest growing staffing firms.
What keeps you excited about the staffing industry and your role?
Making an impact, not only on the organization but individuals. Helping them acquire skills and helping our Strategic-Partners to be successful. I also like that there are always new challenges to overcome and problems to solve. Due to the fast-paced nature of the industry, no day is ever the same.
Can you share a few of your proudest moments from your staffing career thus far?
I like being ahead of the market and I’m proud that our organization has been forward looking in many areas of our business. For example, in order to reach candidates in an ever changing environment, we launched our mobile website and job search experience in 2012. We’ve been fortunate to receive several industry awards as well. We were the first staffing firm to receive the ASA Crystal VOICE award two years in a row. Great service is also important to us so it’s a big deal for me that we’re the only $100M+ company to achieve Diamond status for two consecutive years for Inavero’s Best of Staffing in both the Talent and Client categories. There are many things behind the scenes that make our organization and my team better that make me proud. For example, I remember working with a colleague to redo our training in 2008 and staying up all night to do it. I’m truly committed to helping our team grow – a lot of the people I’ve hired have been with PrideStaff for several years and I’m proud to see how they’ve grown within their own careers.
What would you tell your rookie self just getting into staffing?
Continually look at new ways of doing things that benefit the organization. Continue to learn. You have to be willing to do the hard stuff and be uncomfortable. That’s where the most growth comes. Some of the biggest areas that have impacted my growth have been the most painful – so you don’t forget them. Always have a plan. It helps when you have to make the tough decisions. Priorities shift on a daily basis, but we are continually working towards a plan.
Any recommendations for connecting with a mentor?
Ask for it. Build it. No one ever came to me and said they would be my mentor. You get into business situations and bounce ideas off of each other and it starts to build. You have to ask for that help. In 1999-2000, one of my mentors told me that I would be leading an organization someday. I learned a lot from that person. Get into learning mode and build relationships with different people that can help advise you. I also believe it’s important to share what I’ve learned over time with others.
Are you an industry veteran that’s excited to share your lessons with the next generation of staffing leaders? Share your insights as part of this #womenINstaffing Wednesday series. Contact me to learn more.
Confused on the hashtag (#) in the title of this series? Let me know if you’d like to join a virtual roundtable with a few other female staffing execs to discuss the power of Twitter to build your personal brand.