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NewsJan 30, 2019

The Roster: Vol. 16

Ally White

At Credera, we believe we’re truly better together. The Roster is a monthly series that allows you to get to know leaders at all levels across the firm. 

steve discepola

senior manager, management consulting

Houston, TX

Favorite Tech Tool: My five-month-old son’s Cocoon Cam baby monitor. My wife and I don’t know how people raised kids before it. My amazing Houston coworkers surprised me with this well-designed, worry-saving piece of baby tech. Thanks again, guys!

Now Playing: The West Wing. I can quote the series like a better man would quote the Bible.

Passions Outside of Work:  I really enjoy hiking with my family and playing guitar. I don’t do either nearly enough, but I plan on addressing that this year.

Favorite Sports Team: I am a proud fan of the 27-time World Series Champion New York Yankees.

Office Music Playlist: I’ve been really into “History” by Lucy Darus. It’s easily my favorite album of 2018.

Favorite Credera Memory: I was in Chicago at a vendor conference with Bodie Leonard from our UX practice. We went out for a drink, and we ended up running into the bass player from the rock band The Killers. I’ve had a number of outstanding experiences here at Credera, but that one stands out. It’s not every day you get to have a drink with a rock star.

Best Advice You’ve Received: Know your audience. A close friend and mentor dropped this knowledge bomb on me my first week in consulting. I have used it every day since.

shelby strodel

architect, microsoft solutions

Dallas, TX

Favorite App: It’s got to be a tie between Amazon and SimpliSafe. Call me a nerd but I think it’s so cool to have my home alarm connected to my phone and be able to live stream into my front porch camera whenever I feel like checking in on the just delivered Amazon package. I think the Amazon app is pretty much flawless. It gets me exactly what I need without any extra fluff.

Life Hack: Try to structure your day/life so you aren’t having to rush anywhere. I reduced stress in my life when I gave myself enough buffer time to get somewhere on time.

Favorite Tech Tool: Toggl! I’ve been using Toggl for about 15 months now to track my work hours. It has reduced a lot of stress in my life since I don’t have to keep track of hours in my head anymore when I bounce from meeting to meeting or internal to client work. I highly recommend it if you work on more than one project or help with internal work.

Favorite Sports Team: Dallas Cowboys. And it’s not just because we made the playoffs this year. I’ve got a thing for Dak, I think Beasley is the best secret weapon, and I love watching Lee mentor Vander Esch as he dominated his rookie season. I have of a ton of fun watching those guys work hard to be the best they can be while not taking themselves too seriously.

Office Music Playlist: Instrumentals, musical soundtracks, or rap. Very different, I know. Depends on the day.

Client Experience Highlight: Getting to do the envision phase on my current client. I really enjoyed asking/learning about their current processes and the technologies that supported those processes. I came back from those 2 weeks thinking I cannot wait to work with these people and build an architecture that will dramatically grow their business.

How You’ve Seen the Core Values Lived Out at Credera: It really stands out to me how everyone at Credera balances holding the leaders accountable to our core values while also giving grace, understanding, and forgiveness generously. It is rare to find a firm where the majority of people trust that the leadership is focused on what’s best for the whole firm, not just the few at the top.

Best Advice You’ve Received: Trent Sutton advised me very early on to not be afraid of overcommunicating when it comes to emails. It never hurts to send an “Ok – got it” or “Thanks sounds good” just to acknowledge you received something. This has helped me close the loop on many conversations that otherwise would have drifted into oblivion. Also, keep your promises. This applies to client work but more importantly in engaging with anyone and everyone to build trusting relationships. 

andrea curo

senior consultant, open technology solutions

Dallas, TX

Favorite App: This isn’t a native mobile app, but a website: https://heyfromthefuture.com/age/. I enjoy reading all the tidbits of advice from those older than me. It helps me put a lot of my struggles into perspective.

Now Playing: Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. It’s an extremely goofy and absurd show which lines up perfectly with my humor. The last season just premiered on Netflix so I’ll be out on PTO for a bit.

Passion Outside of Work: Art! I’ve been really enjoying watercoloring lately. They have a soft and wild look to them that is so relaxing to look at. It’s also really fun and easy to do when traveling or on a hike!

Office Music Playlist: Into the Spider-Verse soundtrack. It was a great movie and a great soundtrack, too. What can’t they do?! Really though, it’s a great soundtrack by top hip hop artists that gets me pumped for writing code.

Favorite Credera Memory: I have a lot of memories of Crederians helping me out. I am always amazed by how willing those at Credera are to lend a hand when I’m in need of help. Whether it’s design advice, obscure coding issues, or moving help, I’m not alone.

Best Advice You’ve Received: “Sometimes we want to know how the watch is made and sometimes we just want to know what time it is.” I am guilty of drawn-out explanations because I don’t take the time to stop and think before responding. Taking the time to think about who is asking the question and what they want to know prior to answering has helped improve how I communicate.