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CultureAug 23, 2021

Q&A With Taylor Marley: Geography Lead, Los Angeles

Credera Team

We sat down with Taylor Marley, the office lead of our newly launched Los Angeles office, to learn more about her and her plans for Los Angeles. Taylor opened up about herself and her career path and shares a few important leadership lessons she’s learned along the way. She even shares a great list of things to do the next time you’re in LA! 

Q&A With Taylor Marley

Tell us about your journey to becoming the Los Angeles office lead for Credera.

My Credera story began about five and a half years ago as an experienced hire, and my aspirations at the time were to seek opportunities to grow exponentially, become an expert in my craft, and make a positive impact at a small, but quickly growing, firm. To manifest these goals, I sought opportunities to surround myself with teammates much smarter than I and whose experiences I could learn from. Further, I raised my hand for the projects and roles that would push my limits and develop me into a well-rounded consulting leader and business operator. These things, plus a whole lot of hard work, discipline, and (at times) sacrifice, advanced my career. 

When Justin Bell asked me to lead our expansion into the California market, I jumped at the opportunity to continue to help write our growth story. I continue to surround myself with incredibly talented, smart, and experienced leaders who help shape, guide, and fine tune our market strategy and who help me identify and manage my own blind spots. Developing a new market is a team sport, and I am glad to be on Team Credera.

What are your passions outside of work?

Road cycling and value investing. The mental clarity that I find on the bike is tantamount to meditation for me. Further, I invest in real estate and stocks, so I spend the majority of my free time performing equity research or empowering others (namely women) to build a foundation for self-sufficiency.  

What is a personal goal you’re currently working towards?

Slowing down to speed up. Pre-pandemic, I was always on the go (I took 126 flights in 2019!) and took for granted how easily my body and mind could adapt to that breakneck pace. When the pandemic hit and the world as we knew it came to a grinding halt, I hit a wall – a hard one. I had to quickly re-learn the importance of growing where my feet are planted and finding enjoyment in being still. Since, I’ve made it a priority to slow down, become more intentional with how and where I invest my time, and find peace within the stillness. I believe this reset will pay dividends long term, both personally and professionally. 

You have a totally free weekend. How are you spending your time? 

Slow brewed coffee, long bike rides, WSJ Weekend Edition, and naps. Lots of naps.

Tell us a little about your family. 

My little family is comprised of my partner, Blake, and our two fur children, Maya and Dusty. Blake, a former Crederian, is now the Chief Technology Officer of PremaTax. Maya and Dusty, both rescues, have happily assumed the roles of Chief Snuggle Officers in our household. 

Taylor and Blake Marley

Taylor Marley and Family

How would you describe your approach to leadership?

My leadership style has been deeply influenced by wonderful, visionary, selfless, and supportive leaders, but also by the opposite. As a result, I endeavor to be the leader I didn’t always have at various moments in my career: bold, approachable, vulnerable, and kind. I would hope that, if asked, my team would say I am a servant leader who wholeheartedly supports however they show up in life and at work and equips them with the foundation needed to do their very best work. 

What’s the most important lesson you’ve learned in your career so far?

Only you can own your career. By taking an ownership mentality over your career progression, you will learn to advocate for yourself in ways that, in time, position you for exactly the right, next-best opportunity.

What advice would you give to early career consultants who aspire to have a career like yours?

Get really good at your craft. Show up, work hard, go the extra mile, and be willing to do the small things that, over time, amount to really impactful experiences. Take a genuine interest in people – teammates and clients alike – and build a tribe of confidants who celebrate your wins, call your bluffs, and support you when you (inevitably) falter.

Can you tell us more about how you plan to lead and grow this team?

With deep appreciation for the nuance of the market and the differences of our team. We are in an exciting stage of our growth journey and have the latitude to build a market that reflects the unique needs of our time (e.g., flexibility, sustainability, etc.). I will continue to empower the team to “roll up their sleeves” with me so that we cultivate a shared sense of ownership and a create legacy that we are immensely proud of.

Can you share about a time you made a mistake in your career? How did that change you?

Staying in a role longer than I should have. In hindsight, I wish I would have had the confidence to make a change sooner and to stretch myself in a direction that, while uncomfortable, would have propelled me closer to what was right for me. Now, I trust my intuition and know when to walk away. 

Have you had any great mentors in your life? How have they shaped you?

I have been incredibly fortunate to have a cadre of mentors who have invested in my career growth and development. While the value of a mentor is not to be discounted, I have also benefitted from sponsorship at various junctures in my career. Both are equally important for career advancement, especially for women and other under-represented minority groups.

The greatest advice my first career mentor ever shared was: Your career is a marathon, not a sprint. I revisit this counsel often and use it to challenge my preconceived notions of success.   

What are your top recommendations of things to do in Los Angeles? 

  • Hike Runyon Canyon for sweeping views of the city and Hollywood Hills 

  • Spend an afternoon at The Getty Center

  • Have dinner at Guelaguetza Restaurant  

  • Watch the sunset from the Santa Monica Pier  

  • Try not to let the traffic get the best of you 

 What excites you most about the future of the Los Angeles office?

The opportunity to serve an expanding portfolio of clients undergoing rapid digital transformation with a truly world-class team.

What’s your biggest hope for the Los Angeles office?

That we are able to fulfill our mission of making an extraordinary impact on our people, clients, and communities in Los Angeles.

What has it been like for you to achieve this leadership role as a woman? Have you faced any specific challenges?

Deeply humbling, as I am the product of a community of women who have nurtured, challenged, and supported me since I was very young. The trails that were blazed ahead of me have emboldened me to show up as myself and know that my skills, contributions, and efforts are enough. That said, women – me included – still face a number of challenges in the workplace. 

This year, I walked through unexplained infertility, a condition that is profoundly frustrating, time-consuming, and grief-inducing. Balancing the requirements of the job while navigating a tumultuous path to parenthood is no easy feat, and one that women disproportionally pay the emotional, physical, and mental tax for. However, when sharing my journey with Credera leadership, I was met with nothing but support, encouragement, and affirmation. Credera’s people-first and family-oriented culture has never felt more real or tangible for me than it has this year. For this, I am extremely grateful. 

Interested in Learning More About Our LA Office?

Are you seeking a career at a great workplace? Consider taking the next step on your professional journey with Credera. Check out our open opportunities, follow us on LinkedIn,  TwitterFacebook, or Instagram, or check out our Los Angeles page to learn more about our LA office. 

Credera has many offices and incredible leaders around the world. Learn more about them here 

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