Rapid Fire with Kelsey Owens
Kelsey OwensRapid Fire with Kelsey Owens, Regional Sales Director at Passport
Q: How did you end up in the parking industry? A: Like most folks, I stumbled into it! A friend was recruiting for Passport, and I jumped at the opportunity to interview with the company. The company initially caught my eye because of its technology and startup vibe. Since then, it’s been the experience of a lifetime to watch Passport grow into the company it is today. I’ve also become deeply involved in the industry because of the people we get to work with. I come to work excited to work with my colleagues and peers in the parking industry.
Q: What’s been your single greatest challenge in your career? A: Starting in a new industry can be daunting, and at first, I was hesitant to really dive into learning everything I could. Being scared to take on new challenges or put myself out there only hindered my growth. Overcoming that and stepping out of my comfort zone was a challenge and something I constantly need to remind myself to do.
Q: What lesson(s) did you learn from that challenge, and how do you apply them in your work now? A: Don’t be scared to put yourself out there! You might ask a dumb question or two (trust me there is such a thing as a dumb question), but that’s okay because you will learn from each and every experience to become the best. I try to always remember that every day I can learn something new.
Q: What challenges do you think women in the parking industry face? What can they do to meet or combat those challenges? A: Women are certainly the minority in parking and that comes with certain challenges. If more women were to get involved with Women in Parking and continue to be involved in the industry that will help us overcome challenges that women face really in any workplace. If we keep the dialogue open we will all be better off.
Q: What’s one piece of advice you would give to women starting out in the parking industry? A: Get involved! Going to conferences can be daunting, but if you get involved with an organization you will start to meet people and know a friendly face at every conference.
Q: If you were a new color added to the crayon box, what color are you, why? A: I would be an orange tone – maybe Vermillion? I read once that Orange inspires creativity. Talking through problems and using creativity to solve them is something that I enjoy most about my job!
Q: What motivates you? A: Helping people. Whether that’s talking to a new municipality about an issue they are seeing in their parking environment or talking to a colleague through a difficult situation, helping someone out is something that keeps me motivated.
Q: How do you keep yourself feeling energized to take on the challenges of your life and career? A: I’m very lucky to work at Passport and never have two days be the same. That naturally keeps me energized and eager to come back into work. If everyday were the same it would be very difficult to stay energized.
Q: What does work/life balance mean to you, and how do you achieve it? If you don’t achieve it, why not? A: This is something I think we all struggle with on a daily basis. Some weeks I feel like I’m managing everything, other weeks, I feel like my hair is on fire. I am on the Women In Parking Board and we have a webinar coming up on this! I’m excited to hear Jennifer Bishop discuss this same topic on June 19 at 1:30 p.m. ET and will be focused on work-life balance. You can register for the webinar here.
Q: If you had a plane ticket to anywhere in the world, where would it be and why? A: Traveling is my favorite hobby. There are so many places on my list that it’s hard to narrow down to just one, but I will say at the top of my list right now is either Iceland or Thailand. Both look adventurous, stunning, and a complete getaway from the day to day.
Q: Favorite music and/or band? A: I’m torn between Eric Church and Mumford & Sons. I am also on a huge George Ezra kick right now. It’s hard to pick just one!