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Career Story: Parts And Repair Department Manager

Parts And Repair Department Manager

Job Title: Logistics Division Representative

Type of Company: I work for an international company that sells computer hardware, software and services.

Education: AS, Business, Virginia Community College

Previous Experience: I have worked as a TV repairman, computer repairman, computer repair instructor, service manager, service cost estimator, division-level process contact, service parts project manager and now as a logistics rep.

Job Tasks: With my extensive background in repairing electronic products, I lead a worldwide team that services parts for products that are no longer made. I'm also engaged in overseeing and reporting on new product warranty readiness to the management of our two companies.

A typical week includes attending three meetings where I represent my division and managing two meetings where I assign actions to team players for resolving open issues. I have extensive knowledge of Lotus and Microsoft business management software. Our major client only uses Microsoft: Excel for spreadsheets, Word for documents, PowerPoint for presentations, so when I need to track activity - with meeting minutes - I do so using one of those three. I work from home and use email and conference calls for the bulk of my meetings.

A typical day starts with managing my daily mail and preparing for any meetings I need to attend or manage. For the meetings I manage, I capture the latest status in an Excel spreadsheet and decide who should be assigned the next problem to be resolved. I email the spreadsheet with its updates prior to the next weekly meeting. I assign myself work in the meetings as well and set myself a deadline as I would for others on the team.

A typical month includes two executive reviews covering the performance of their teams and how prepared they are to provide service parts for newly announced products.

The other 20% of my time is spent thinking about streamlining processes to reduce errors, increase accuracy or reduce the time to accomplish a task.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of the job is the interaction. I enjoy with working with people all over the world, in the Netherlands, England, Scotland, Brazil, Mexico, Malaysia and China. It's interesting and enjoyable to learn about their customs, beliefs, holidays and occasional family events.

The worst part of my job is chasing information that needed to be delivered 'yesterday,' in emergency situations or when primary contact people are not available to get the task done or deliver needed information.

Job Tips: I can only offer advise that is generic; it can apply to any job, not just the one I currently have.

Figure out what you like to do. Take courses and jobs to increase your knowledge. Along with that, figure out what you don't like to do and decide if you can do well without doing it. If you can, great, if you can't, then you need to take jobs and courses to at least get yourself up to a working level for the things you like to do.

My personal example is: I love to fix things and I love electronics and I did not like to write. Here's the BUT: you can NOT expect to get anywhere in this world without the ability to write. 30 years later, I still love to fix things, still love electronics and still don't care to write, but after earning a business degree and years of practice, I'm getting better at writing... ...and have taken the time to tell you about my journey. Good luck with your journey! Move into the area of your strength and love!!! The tougher parts will be a labor of love, enjoy them too...in time.

Additional Thoughts: No matter what you do, it will someday be useful to you. Enjoy it as best you can at the time. If you find yourself working in a bad situation, remember this may be your lesson too. Bad situations create learning and training on how NOT to act when you are in charge!

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