Tracey Wall: Transferring from Sales to HR
It’s been just over one year since I made my internal transfer – it’s been an incredibly valuable experience for me. After spending 23 years in Sales, I was ready for a change; I wanted to find a new way to add value to DENSO.
Though I was looking for a change, there was some fear in such a drastic transition. I was leaving a position where I was the go-to person for the customer. I knew the job and my contributions to the company. What exactly will I be doing in HR? What value would I be bringing to the new position? How would I show my contributions quickly? There were a lot of questions – I wasn’t quite sure what I was signing up for.
But that’s when I remembered that I know DENSO and the values we all hold. Despite different divisions, plants or roles, we all have common, fundamental DENSO values and ways of working. Yes, I had a lot of sales knowledge and contacts within DENSO throughout my career, but I realized this was not exclusive to the sales role – it would (and has been) helpful in my new planning role.
The HR team was great – they were very welcoming and showed me the ropes. But I’m a department of one, so I had to proactively insert myself into meetings and teams across North America. In my role I get exposure to many aspects of our business – I get to hear the bigger picture and how executives discuss, consider and make decisions on various issues. I’ve appreciated this new insight into our company, as it has given me new understanding about why/how things are done and reinforced my respect for, and dedication to, DENSO.
For those thinking of making a change, I have a couple pieces of advice:
> Don’t let fear or hesitation stop you – you will overcome it. I loved my sales department and team, but knew I was going into a department with good people. No matter where you go, there’s going to be people to support you and who you’ll enjoy working with.
> Don’t underestimate yourself. Just because you are in one function and will have to learn a new job, the DENSO fundamentals are the same.
> Do it for the right reasons. Don’t look to make a major transition just because you’re not happy with one aspect of your job. Remember, the grass is not always greener – it is a different texture and shade of green.