Team Deltek’s Greg Patterson: Learning to Adapt to Change as a New Hire
Starting a new job at a new company is stressful enough, but starting right before a global pandemic that shifts everything you’ve learned from in-person to remote comes with its own set of challenges! Last month, Greg Patterson celebrated his one-year anniversary with Deltek, and while it was not the typical new hire experience, it is certainly one he will never forget. In this #TeamDeltek spotlight we had the opportunity to sit down (virtually!) and learn about his first year, love of learning and what makes Deltek’s workplace culture unlike any other.
A native of the Washington, D.C. area, Greg joined Deltek in January 2020, as a Senior Manager on the Financial Systems and Data Transformation (FSDT) team, responsible for managing the intake of finance Zombies and enhancement requests.
When asked to share a little bit about what a Zombie was, Greg replied, “Finance Zombies, also known as enhancements, are any requests designed to improve a system or process. The enhancement process, like eliminating Zombies, aims to reduce inefficiency and the time it takes to complete finance actions. An enhancement request can range from something small, like changing the way an expense report works, to a larger more involved request, such as adding new ways to collect payment from customers.”
As a kid, Greg’s favorite toys to play with were Legos ─ and he still enjoys them, referencing the three assembled Lego sets he has on his bookshelf in his home office. Now, as an adult, this has translated to his love of analyzing the inner workings of a system or process and deconstructing the larger elements. As part of Greg’s role, as the lead of the FSDT business system analyst team, he is taking the larger requirements from our stakeholders and breaking them down into actionable requests to achieve the final result.
Embracing a New Workplace Culture
It's no secret that Deltek’s workplace culture is one that not only attracts new employees, but is also a key reason to why so many long-time employees continue to build their careers here. No matter where employees reside, there is a sense of community and belonging that comes from having a values-driven environment.
Like many employee who joined Deltek early last year, there wasn’t a lot of in-person time before the company decided to shift to 100% virtual, but that didn’t stop Greg and his team from learning from one another. “The level of collaboration at Deltek is one of the unique aspects of the culture which I enjoy most. In several of my projects I’ve had the privilege of working side by side with business partners who openly share ideas and ways to improve. Collaborating to solve problems or allowing ourselves to be innovative is a workplace aspect that my prior employer lacked. Here at Deltek it seems to be the norm, which supports me to be more effective in my role,” explained Greg.
A fundamental element of Deltek’s culture is its inclusive workplace, where every employee is respected, appreciated and given opportunities to pursue their professional interests and grow their careers.
When asked about why it is important to have such an inclusive workplace, Greg shared, “Inclusivity is part feeling and part embodiment of a growth mindset. A workplace that feels inclusive allows us all to be our full authentic-self, and a workplace that supports inclusivity empowers our teams to innovate and create exceptional software for our customers.” Adding, “It celebrates the different approaches and insights we each have; all leading to more, not less, success for Deltek over the long-term.”
But it’s not just about delivering results, Deltek’s leadership team has always made health and safety a top priority for its employees and customers. This has become especially important during quarantine, where there is little separation between professional and personal lives. Providing benefits like virtual health and wellness classes, online educational sessions and resources like Deltek’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP), are just some of the things that have helped Deltek employees adjust to these uncertain times.
In addition to these offerings, “The work-life balance that Deltek allows me to maintain is what sets it apart from other organizations. When I’m off, my colleagues respect that even when we’re under tight project deadlines or other constraints. And in turn, I have the same respect for their working hours. Maintaining a work-life balance is not easy during the pandemic, but it is greatly needed. Noting, “Most of my friends are jealous of our Project Nation Fridays.”
Focusing on Learning & Development
Deltek believes in investing in its people and helping them to develop their talents and abilities. Our market leadership is based on the work of our global and diverse team of innovators, creators and collaborators who have a passion for learning, growing and making a difference for Deltek Project Nation.
“Embracing continuous learning and development is one of Deltek’s ten core values that resonates with me ─ and it’s also one my family embraces in practice. While I was younger, my mother encouraged me to learn outside of the classroom through books, extracurricular activities, camps, and mentors,” said Greg.
Deltek employees across the globe have access to tools and resources like LinkedIn Learning, leadership sessions and defined development paths to truly own their careers. When it comes to on-the-job learning, “Like everyone else, I’m usually too busy to immediately research the topics I encounter during the workday”, responded Greg. “To tackle this, I like to keep a learning log of topics or question I would like to learn more about. Then when I have learning time (which I schedule on my calendar), I use this list to guide my learning activity. Over the years I’ve kept a log of this learning from various employers and many topics which helps inform future ideas.”
When describing how the team is staying connected to each other and the projects they were working on, Greg answered, “To do this requires a lot of team work, research, and coordination which is increasingly more difficult during the pandemic. Our team has made great efforts to keep communications streamlined and well documented.” One of the ways they do this is through Quantum, an HR system Deltek uses to manage 1:1 meetings as well as track progress ─ reviewing their lists during weekly sessions, to ensure nothing slips through the cracks.
One of the things Greg looks forward to resuming in 2021 is mentoring young leaders in his business fraternity, Alpha Kappa Psi. Having served as Chapter Advisor to the Howard chapter, Regional Director and Vice President of Membership Development, he is committed to giving back by helping the next generation of leaders with the skills and knowledge they need to be successful.
On a Personal Note
Deltek appreciates all of its dedicated employees and the time they spend supporting Deltek Project Nation ─ but also realizes it cannot be all work and no play. So when asked what he likes to do when he’s not busy slaying Zombies, Greg replied, “I love walking around Washington, D.C. and strolling through Union Station. In the summer I spend a lot of my time on the national trails along with Potomac, in Volta Park, or the Georgetown waterfront area with my dog Bella.
But more importantly he loves spending time with his friends and family. During the pandemic he has created new traditions, including getting together virtually over Zoom with his three nieces. “I am a very proud uncle and the only uncle invited to join them for weekly Hot Cocoa dates.”
“I am also a passionate traveler, and it is something I am extremely excited to resume ─ I love the cultural experiences that arise for visiting places near and far. My first trip, post-pandemic, will definitely be back to the Mediterranean. Prior to the pandemic I was scheduled to visit Gibraltar, Barcelona, Marseille, Genoa, Pisa, and Italy over 9 days. I think roaming up and down the Mediterranean coast will be a great way to recover!”
In conclusion, we asked Greg what the best advice he’s ever received. To which he boldly responded, “Don’t let perfect be the enemy of good,” ─ which seemed only fitting after a year like 2020!
For new employees like Greg, starting a new job this past year may have been a bit different and challenging in many ways. However, with a new year ahead and Deltek’s collaborative culture and focus on learning and development, he looks forward to what we all can accomplish in 2021 and beyond.
Want to learn more? Join the Deltek Talent Community to receive regular updates from #TeamDeltek about our culture, company initiatives, and career opportunities and hear even more about why our employees love working here!
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