Name: Rick Simkins
Return Path position: Service Delivery Support Coordinator
Career past life (What did you do?): I sold IT solutions as an outside sales rep for 23 years (networks, servers, storage, and software).
How long were you out of the workforce? Two years.
Return Path role (What do you do each day?): I sit in on weekly customer calls with the Technical Account Managers (TAMs). I don’t talk to the customers, but I learn what questions they ask and how the TAMs help them troubleshoot issues such as improving inbox placement, sender reputation, or how to use the tools. After the calls, the TAMs answer questions from the Returnees, demonstrate other features of the tools, and teach us more about the customer’s market, competitors, and historical information regarding their email campaign successes and challenges. I am also getting more involved on the Relationship Manager side of things with pipeline meetings, customer calls for renewals, upsells, and cross sells. Some of my day is spent with the channel sales group to learn more about their part of the business. I have a channel sales background so this is of particular interest to me.
Crossover (What skills from your past life do you use in your new position?): I rely on my technical understanding, inquiry, and knowledge of how to create customer facing documents, as well as my experience with productivity software and sales reports.
What does the Return to Work program mean to you? I view this as a chance to retool my skill set in a market vertical that is different from my past experience. The Return to Work program offers me the chance to show my value to my employer, which in turn gives me more confidence in the workplace.
What do you hope to get out of it? I hope to gain current skills and knowledge that are more relevant to a market that is growing quickly.
What advice would you give to future Returnees? Learn everything you can and don’t be timid about asking questions of anyone. Everyone at Return Path is very open to answering questions—even the questions you think are too basic. This is a great opportunity to experience job roles outside your comfort zone, if for no other reason than to get a perspective of how other roles contribute to the overall company objectives.
Where did you hear about this program? I found out about the Return to Work program through the father of an Return Path employee.