Life @ Schneider Blog

Masters of Balance

Written by guest blogger, Ashley May

I’m sure many others have been in my shoes. About to graduate college, and I’m trying to find the best place to land. Decisions suddenly become bigger than, “Which library should I study at tonight?” and quickly transform to, “Which city should I live in?”. It’s times like these that make me so thankful I work at Schneider Electric. The diverse talents and backgrounds of people at our plant have given me a support system unlike any other to make big decisions. A piece of advice I would like to share is one I value the most. A colleague once told me:

Write down five things you value the most in life. If you feel like you can fulfill those, you will be happy with any decision you make.

After taking that advice into consideration, I began seeing everything more clearly.

Just after starting my junior year at the University of Missouri, I began working part-time as an engineering intern at Schneider Electric. After two years of looking up to this manufacturing plant through university tours and projects, I had the wonderful opportunity of starting my own chapter at Schneider Electric. At the time, I was nervous about taking the job. Would I have enough time for school work? Would I still be able to attend club meetings? I thought about my relationships with my family and friends, and even my own exercise routines. Would those suffer as well? I was warned this may be too large of a time commitment, but I accepted the challenge. I figured, if you don’t challenge yourself, you will never know your true potential.

By saying yes to the opportunity of interning at SE, other areas of my life started to improve. I was saying yes to more opportunities: participating in a triathlon with my dad, joining the Schneider softball team, organizing a 5K/10K. One step out of my comfort zone led to another. The crazy part was, the more opportunities I said yes to, the better I managed my time. The employees at Schneider Electric are masters of balance—and it has been influencing me positively ever since I accepted the challenge. None of my co-workers are limited to the talents they bring to work: some have businesses at home, while others coach sports teams. The more I get to know my co-workers, the more I realize they fulfill their values both at work and at home.

Anyone who has played on competitive sports teams understands the time and the dedication it takes to win: hours on the courts, miles spent running, laps in the pool. What drives you to put in hours of commitment?

The team. The coach.

Growing up, I competed to be on the best teams I was capable of. Tryouts were individual, but after the team was made, all efforts were centered around accomplishing one goal. Working at SE reminds me of that teamwork, constantly striving to do better. What drives me to work harder?

Knowing my teammates are right there, determined to do the same.

Knowing that my manager’s expectations are high.

My family, friends, health, learning, and overall success are my highest values. The Schneider Electric team has influenced me to not only identify my values, but to prioritize them by becoming a “master of balance”. One leap forward in my career has helped me maximize my potential in all facets of my life, and I have never been happier.

If there is one moral to be taken from my story let it be this:

Know your values, and seek to fill them. From there, find people who balance their talents in a way that challenges you to become the best you can be.

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About the Author:

Ashley May is a Manufacturing Engineering Intern in the Quality Department for Schneider Electric. She will be graduating in December 2017 with a degree in Industrial and Manufacturing Systems Engineering from the University of Missouri.  In her free time, Ashley enjoys staying active by running, biking, and playing recreational sports with her friends and coworkers.    

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