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May was Asian & Pacific American Heritage Month. The month pays tribute to the contributions generations of Asian & Pacific Islander Americans have made to our history, culture, and society. This year marked the 30th anniversary of the month-long celebration! To reflect on the occasion, we’d like to recognize the contributions of all of our employees of Asian & Pacific Islander heritage, and profile a few of them here.

Annie Bai
Annie

What is an important lesson you’ve learned during your career?

The decisions we've made in the past don't need to enforce our future. You can always grow, transform and evolve. You (your present self) are in control and not the past. Just know that it's usually not easy to change how others view you. It takes a lot of learning and hustle. Sometimes you have to knock repeatedly to have new doors open up.

How has your culture played a role in your career? 

Growing up as a "model minority" played a significant role in my work ethic and academic excellence. It also foisted a narrow set of expectations upon me.

What was the biggest lesson you learned growing up in your household that you value till this day?

What unconditional love looks like. How is this relevant to my career? It goes to believing in myself, especially when I've wanted to leap into new opportunities but struggled to overcome the attendant emotional and pragmatic hurdles.

How has Socure supported your growth and development?

Socure is an open-minded company that recognizes people for their actual merits and performance as opposed to mere job titles. We don't pursue fragmented goals but recognize that collaboration is critical to product and customer success. This open-mindedness allowed me to move into leadership with a novel new role as privacy evangelist on the marketing team.

What is the best advice you’ve received in your career?

The best advice often comes in the form of a No with explanation. For example, when I was trying to break into a new career, a contact told me she thought one reason I wasn't getting hired despite many interviews is because I was overqualified. Even though I was willing to take a junior position in order to break in, she pointed out that hiring managers who were younger and less educated than me might have trepidation around overseeing an overqualified person. It wasn't the No that was helpful (I never accept No’s!) but the reasoning that she proffered. It allowed me to adjust my interviewing and application strategy.

Edilberto Soriano
Edilberto

What is an important lesson you’ve learned during your career?

I’ve learned that in many work environments and situations, focusing on the incremental is a great strategy, especially if you tend to have completist and perfectionist bents (which I do). I find that I tend to strive for the perfectibility of a system or a solution, but in nearly all cases it’s either not truly possible or sustainable, but iteration still means that meaningful improvements and changes can be made. Trying to focus on what is achievable given constraints while looking at a larger desire has helped to ground me in my work.

How has your culture played a role in your career? 

I lean more towards building consensus, or at least that is my initial approach when working on a project or initiative. As an immigrant, I am able to both see a perspective that privileges the good of the larger group, and take a course of action that would be individualistic if consensus building isn’t possible. (Knowing when to resort to one or the other is always the tricky bit.) And I strongly believe in the power of a shared meal; I was always taught that sharing good food with others is a way to show respect and affection. One of my hobbies is baking, and bringing in baked goods has proved to be a great way to team build.

What was the biggest lesson you learned growing up in your household that you value till this day?

If something is good or necessary, just do it. Don’t wait for praise or approval. You likely won’t get it initially, if at all. Do the work, and if it’s good, that is its own reward. If people appreciate it, that’s a bonus.

How has Socure supported your growth and development?

Socure is a place where I feel that I don’t have to worry about being open about my perspectives and who I am as an individual. I am different, but that is something that is always treated with respect. 

What is the best advice you’ve received in your career?

Keep it about the work, and when in doubt return to the work. Everything else is a distraction.

Sean Lin
Sean
 

What is an important lesson you’ve learned during your career?

I've learned throughout my career how important it is to never stop learning. It's an empowering feeling to know that you are constantly investing in yourself. I have personally found that I learn the best through asking questions. 

How has your culture played a role in your career? 

I was taught the importance of work ethic at a very early age. My parents are first-generation Americans who emigrated from Taiwan with one suitcase each. Together, they built great lives for themselves and their children, working weekends and long hours. I'm so grateful for them and, to this day, they serve as amazing examples to me of what people can achieve when they work hard and stay on the right path. 

What was the biggest lesson you learned growing up in your household that you value till this day?

The most consistent messages that I've received from my parents was to always do my best. I learned that the results may vary (I'm reminiscing about my short-lived clarinet days in middle school), but as long as I knew I did everything I could to produce the best results then I could sleep well at night. 

How has Socure supported your growth and development?

I feel so lucky that Socure gave me the chance to pivot in my career. From day one, I felt like my voice was heard and I could contribute to the building of processes and systems within our Talent team. I was given autonomy, trust, and all the tools I have needed to continue hiring great people. I am so happy to be here and feel like every day is an opportunity for me to grow! 

What is the best advice you’ve received in your career?

One of the best pieces of advice I have received in my career is that no one is responsible for my personal (and career) development except for me. I am very fortunate to have had so many amazing mentors who have helped guide me along the way, but at the end of the day, it's up to me to lean in, say yes to the right opportunities, and learn. 

Topics: Asian, heritage, pacific islander

Michelle Tovar

Michelle Tovar

Michelle is Socure’s People Operations Coordinator. Previously, she was at Enterprise Holdings as a Management Trainee and then HR Professional where she discovered her passion for helping her colleagues in a variety of areas specifically employee development and growth. When not working, you can find her at the Kensico Dam Plaza where she loves to walk and catch up with her friends.