Today I had lunch with my dear friend, Lena.
I met Lena many years ago when I first started working for Cox in Atlanta, in 1996/1997. Lena worked in IT and I worked on projects on the Customer Care team and from time to time we would be together in meetings, on project teams, in vendor reviews, etc.
Fast forward to 2006 - 2007, when I joined the Cox IT team. I worked on a development team that supported Customer Care IT projects. I had the pleasure of working with Lena for several years and we got to know each other during that time.
Lena is an amazing, smart, wonderful, caring person and she knows IT. All the complexities, the dependencies, the lifecycles, the testing, the environments, she knows her stuff.
The thank you and gratitude today is for all the times that Lena forged ahead, made phone calls, rallied the troops, held our team and other teams accountable to deliver on the projects, the timelines and the expected results from our business partners and end-users, the Customer Care Representatives.
One of Lena's hallmarks, she always brought all of this home with integrity, honesty and care, coupled with the expectation that everyone should do their best.
Lena held our team accountable along with our partner teams in the sometimes very crazy and frustrating project cycles of software development. The moving parts, the pieces and the personalities sometimes too much, and yet Lena always forged ahead.
As a project manager, Lena was in the mix of huge projects, significant software releases and I was always confident because I knew that Lena knew her stuff. Sometimes at 2 and 3 in the morning during actual software releases, the tension and pressure could be much and Lena always managed successfully. She was always prepared, very detailed, structured, she kept everyone on task until the release was complete.
I was very fortunate that in my 30+ years in the cable/telecommunications industry, I worked side by side with many wonderful, smart, amazing people and Lena is certainly one of them. My years in Cox IT with the development team was a wonderful experience, I learned so much from all of them.
Since my retirement Lena and I have scheduled lunch outings almost every other month to catch up on all things life. Today we had a nice visit and covered everything from movies to politics to world affairs and always family, always !
Lena has a drive and energy focused on all that is good about life. Lena can indeed find the silver lining in anything that may cause fear or doubt or sadness. She sees the glass half full and is always planning for the glass to be completely full.
Lena thanks for lunch today and thanks for all you do to make the world a better place.