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Lisa Villalobos

Lisa Villalobos

Introduce yourself to our audience. Tell us who you are and what you are currently focused on.

I am Lisa Villalobos and currently working as a Workday HR/Payroll System Implementation Consultant. I have a professional background in Human Resources as well as many years of personal experience coaching soccer to kids of all ages (2-62). I am currently based in San Francisco and have had the opportunity to work with clients across the US.

I have a passion to help others realize their potential As a consultant and a soccer coach, I gain most satisfaction by watching others learn and grow.

Workday is an incredibly powerful HR System. When a client goes live, they normally launch with limited functionality. By continuing to learn and practice, the client can leverage this power to benefit the organization.

I have also really enjoyed teaching young kids to have fun, respect one another, and learn skills that others believed impossible. I love watching them grow into wonderful soccer players and teammates.

Tell us about your favorite Ellevate Network memory or success story. Why are you a member?

There are two primary memories.

I went to a Mix and Mingle and met a lovely woman named Cheryl. As someone new to San Francisco, I really felt like I connect with her both professionally and personally.

Secondly is Helen who is my Squad Mod. Already in my short time visiting with her, she has pushed me into uncomfortable and I have come out the other side better for her influence. I truly appreciate her ability to "hear" where I am and to somehow say exactly what I need to hear to push me.

I became a member to build my professional and personal network. I have enjoyed it so far.

How would you define your professional mission?

Fun – I truly believe in loving what I do. I am currently working as a Workday HCM implementation consultant and look forward to it every day. I enjoy my team, the problem-solving, and consulting with users on the new technology.

Sportsmanship – Everything in my life is better with respectful cooperation with teammates, leaders, and customers. My favorite projects have been those where we have all encouraged one another.

Winning – I define winning as doing everything you can in your power to achieve the goal. Whether that’s continually learning and practicing skills, collaborating with teammates to accomplish more than I can alone, or scanning the environment to strategically place a project or product, I want to put myself and my team in a position to win.

What is one of your most memorable career accomplishments?

Owning a small business teaching soccer to pre-school children and coaching them in the local recreational league. One of my favorite memories is watching three five-year-olds not only go the right way but look up, pass, and score as a team. This is very difficult for kids so young, but they were having fun and motivated to work with each other to accomplish a goal, literally!

We’d love to hear more about your career path. What led you to where you are today?

My career path has not been straight. I started in Human Resources, acting as a generalist at times as well as a specialist at others.

When I moved to Texas, I said that "I wouldn't work right away" while I settled in with two small kids. That break lasted nine years and was full of parenting, volunteering, and running my soccer instruction business. While my primary professional career definitely was on hold, I wouldn't trade the opportunity to be involved in my kids' lives and being self-employed.

When I returned to work, it was definitely a challenge to make up for lost time. I eventually had a unique opportunity to help with a Workday implementation and it was one of the most rewarding professional experiences of my life. That led me to a job relocating to California.

What legacy do you hope to leave through your work?

I definitely want to leave people with the skills to continue learning and growing. It's one thing to coach a person how to do something and an entirely different one to coach them how to learn how to coach themselves. If I've done my job right, they will eventually be better than I am.

What is it about your job that makes you feel it’s the right fit for you?

The blend of human and technical. I started as a math major and ended with a psychology major. I am in human resources but lean toward the more technical areas such as compensation, benefits, and information systems. I love the ability to get into the system and figure out complex configurations while teaching my clients to do the same thing.

What would you say your personal superpower is?

Patience. Software implementations are very stressful. Normally, the client staff is doing their own job as well as the work needed to prepare for the software change. They are often required to work with new people whether it's other functional leads within their organization or paid implementation consultants. All of these different requirements are extremely challenging and I find that the sense of calm (and often humor) I bring helps the team stay grounded.

What is the best career advice you ever received?

Learn to network. I used to think it was a waste of time but learned later that the network is both a personal and professional lifeline. Most of my jobs have come through my network and I have been able to leverage my network to help others which is very rewarding as well.

What is one piece of advice you’d offer working moms?

Be engaged and interested in your kids. Give them value-added experiences. Remember that they enjoy understanding the expectations you have of them and the boundaries you set for them. Lead your life with principles and values that you would be proud to have your family emulate.

Have more questions? Follow up with the expert herself.

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