When Lisa Walden joined Capital Group 16 years ago, she was leaving an industry riddled with instability. She needed a stable job that helped her provide for her three children while still fulfilling her desire for stimulating work and career growth. She found that and more at Capital Group, where she’s now a Client Services Senior Manager based in Norfolk, Virginia.
While many people see job hopping as the primary way to attain promotions or even personal development, Walden has gained new roles and new understandings of her special talents without leaving the supportive Capital Group workplace that she loves. She says one key to her growth has been finding ways to develop “in place,” along with finding ways to see her work from perspectives that make her feel impactful.
We talked to Walden about what initially attracted her to Capital Group, along with the benefits and experiences that made her stay. Then, we discussed how she grows on the job every day, how she’s earned internal promotions, and how she keeps a focus on impact and personal development.
What about this company stood out to you and made you want to join? What’s been your favorite aspect since joining?
Early in my career, I was a single mother of three. I previously worked in an industry where there was very little stability. Any given day could be the last day for your department. This prompted me to look for a career with an organization that had a more stable track record, that cares for its associates as individuals, and that supports ongoing learning and development. Those were the attributes that stood out for me then — and now — about Capital Group.
Personally, there are so many things I appreciate about Capital Group. One is linked to my need for stability; it’s provided me with an opportunity to provide for my family and to invest in our future. In addition to the integrity of our investment approach and the great work we are able to do for our customers, Capital Group has a tremendous presence in the community and encourages its associates to make a difference beyond the office walls. Lastly, Capital Group’s focus over the last several years on diversity and inclusion creates space for associates to bring their authentic selves to work. This aspect makes me proud and excited to come to work each day.
Tell me about the roles that you’ve held at your company, as well as your current one. What about this role most excites you?
I started at Capital Group 16 years ago answering calls from our investors and advisors in our service center. I’ve performed a few roles over the years, including an internship in a manager role and in our Risk Management and Control area. I was promoted to manager in 2010 and into my current role as a Client Services Senior Manager in 2012. The thing that excites me most about my job today is my ability to foster positive business outcomes through the development of the leaders I support.
A lot of people believe that developing your career means changing companies, and not infrequently. What has enabled you to develop/advance your career without job hopping?
While I understand job movement, it’s never been a necessity for me. The one thing I’d say has enabled me to continue to advance and develop, while staying with one organization, is focusing on the long term. I do that in a number of ways, including proactively seeking ways to develop “in place.” I seek development opportunities based on things I’m passionate about and things that leverage my strengths, such as developing others and helping those I work with be their best selves at work. Taking this approach helps me to stay focused, excited and challenged at the same time.
Ultimately, what has led you to stay at your company?
At the end of the day, I wouldn’t be truthful if I said that every day has been sunshine and rainbows. I don’t think that’s a reasonable expectation for any career. What I will say is that the things I’ve learned, the experiences I’ve gained and the friendships I’ve fostered far outweigh any negatives. I consider my work an opportunity to serve others and a personal blessing. This is what keeps me grounded — and keeps me at Capital Group.
What’s something you think most people (perhaps even current employees) don’t know about your company that you think they should?
I’ve worked in a number of call centers and service centers in the past. I’d say that working in the service center at Capital Group is unique simply because of the care and investment it puts into each associate. From the physical environment to the unmatched retirement contributions to the wide range of benefit offerings, Capital Group demonstrates in action that each and every associate is an integral part of what makes this organization great.
What’s the most memorable piece of career advice you’ve received?
The best piece of career advice I’ve ever received was simple: YOU have to realize what you bring to the table is special and necessary. Keep being a square peg in a round hole; be you!
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