Manager of Benefits and Compliance, Alex Lee
I’ve been with Alex Lee since February 1990 and have held many different roles. I started when I was a sophomore in high school as a cashier at the Lowes Foods in Kernersville, N.C. I was 16 and scared out of my mind. I was very shy, very introverted. The thought of having to talk to people terrified me. But I was also excited. Kernersville was a small town, and everything seemed very self-contained. There was a good employee base within the store, so it felt like a big family, like an extension of my family at home. Now, thirty years later, I still talk to some of those people.
In college, I worked at store #149, which was the Kings, N.C., store then. I was the office manager there. I went through the manager program and then worked as co-manager in the store for about a year and a half. Ted Davis, who was the manager, served as my mentor. He helped me get an interview with Alex Lee in human resources. In the 30 years I’ve been with the company, I’ve been a cashier, office assistance, offices manager, co-manager, HR user analyst, and, now, a manager of benefits and compliance. I feel like I’ve been taken care of here.
Outside The Comfort Zone
The biggest catalyst to growth has been the willingness to do something out of your box, out of your comfort level. When I first came to Alex Lee, I held more of a technical role. But I love working with people one-on-one. When I got into the benefits part of my job, I loved helping people understand their benefits and how they can profit from them. I really couldn’t ask for a better position. And I can appreciate where I am because of where I came from. I have an appreciation for people who work on the frontlines.
Mentors Along the Way
I’ve had a few mentors throughout my career. At my first job as a cashier in Kernersville, I worked for Walter Hardwick. He was someone who was very encouraging to me, especially in my early years with the company. He was popular in the community and actually received the key to the city. He will talk your ear off. Ted Davis also stands out. I tend to remember the ones early in my career, kind of like how you remember your favorite teacher in school.
I feel like I’ve been taken care of here