"During my interviews, I remember John talking about how important it was to get each new hire right to protect the Willory team. It didn’t take long for me to realize Willory was something special."
Welcome to our series about what makes Willory truly unique: our team. Without the people on the Willory team we would not be recognized as one of the top workplaces in Northeast Ohio and have grown so significantly in the last eight years.
Get to know Willory's Marketing Manager, Bridgette Klein through her own words. If Bridgette's words resonate with you and you want to join #TeamWillory, check out our Why Willory? page.
How did you find Willory?
I found Willory through the listing for a Digital Marketing Assistant/Office Administrator, researched the company on the website, and applied. I remember getting an email from John fairly quickly. The rest is history. The role has definitely evolved based on my strengths at the time of starting, and now as I’ve matured as a leader of marketing.
When I applied, I knew I wanted to focus on the digital aspect of marketing, work for a company that was passionate about its people and culture, and a place that felt like a family. During my interviews, I remember John talking about how important it was to get each new hire right to protect the Willory team. It didn’t take long for me to realize Willory was something special.
I find it interesting that the majority of our internal hires come from some a previous relationship – sometimes that’s as a client, a candidate for a role we’re working on behalf of a client, and other prior experiences – but both Scott and I came from Indeed and had never heard of Willory before applying. Sometimes the referral is the greatest hire, but other times you have to bring new people in to develop a rich fabric of the organizational culture.
What's your proudest accomplishment while working at the firm?
My proudest accomplishment is my most recent one: hitting my fifth anniversary with Willory. It was a great moment to be celebrated by my coworkers and to be recognized as the enthusiastic leader I strive to be.
How has Willory helped you in your career development?
Willory has been instrumental in my career development. I look at my first few years at Willory as a grad school of sorts. Through my five years at Willory I’ve been encouraged to mature as a marketing professional, coached to become a better leader, and built a foundational understanding of business practices, including finances. Those who know me well know I’m not a numbers person, so this has been a massive stretch for me. I appreciate how much the Willory team has worked with me to gain that understanding…even if I have to ask the same question about once every six months. Who knows what I can conquer in another five years!
In your opinion, what SEPARATES Willory from other recruiting/consulting firms?
I joke that Willory isn’t like a regular staffing firm, we’re a cool staffing firm (think Regina George’s mom in Mean Girls). In reality, we’re that, but so much more. Obviously, we have the consulting side of our services which differentiates us, but more than that we passionately care about our community – all of the HR, payroll, sales, marketing, and leaders who are dedicated to improving work lives across Ohio and the nation.
What are the 3 most significant lessons that you have learned in your career so far?
- Feedback is a gift. When someone takes the time to give you direct and honest feedback in an emotionally intelligent way, it means they care about your future. It can be hard to hear criticism, but learn from it and appreciate the communication.
- Share your enthusiasm. Find what you’re passionate about and find ways to share that fire with others. People can tell when you’re communicating with energy and it’s invigorating.
- Explore your challenges and talk about them with other people; you never know when they have the solution you need. It can feel unnatural to expose yourself to
Looking back at your academic career what did you learn that impacted you the most?
Having gone to a small, liberal arts college, I learned a lot about approaching the world in unique ways and how to express myself in small group settings. In pursuing a degree in studio art, I was able to explore the creative process and how documented brainstorming is part of that. As a balance, I also completed my degree in communications, where I built a theoretical foundation for my career. I love having a varied background.
What have been some of your favorite takeaways/strongest developments from working at Willory?
The second year we made it on the NorthCoast 99 – it was also the year we were the Top Scorer in the Small Business category – was a massive success for the firm and for me. It was the first time I completed the bulk of the survey, but more than that, it was recognition that we were on the fight path.
Also, I think speaking at #DisruptHRCle was a considerable accomplishment. I look back and know I could improve my presentation, but I feel so empowered by completing those five minutes in front of 200 HR professionals. I believe that a strong leader would never ask someone to do something they wouldn’t do, a concept I learned from my husband.
How is your work life balance? What do you spend most of your time doing outside of working at Willory?
I love the ability to find the balance that works for myself and my family. Outside of working and spending time with my family, I probably spend the most time reading. I bounce back and forth between three very different genres: business/self-improvement, historical fiction, and young adult fantasy fiction. Right now, my favorite books are “Talk Triggers” by Jay Baer and Daniel Lemin (business) and Lauren Willig’s Pink Carnation series.