Last month we introduced our new Employee Spotlight series. This series was born with the belief that your life experiences make you the unique person you are today and influence what you bring to the amazing culture here at Actian. We have chosen to feature those incredible individuals with a blog post dedicated to them.
For this month’s Employee Spotlight, I had the privilege of sitting down with our new HR Benefits and Compensation Specialist, Alanna Taber.
This may come as a surprise to all of you, especially those who personally know someone in HR, but Alanna did not dream as a little girl of someday becoming an HR professional. In fact, her journey to this point in her career, like many of us, was not a direct path.
Growing up in the hub of technology in Mountain View, CA, when so many technological advancements were being made with the Internet and Apple 1 computers, Alanna became interested in math and sciences early on. Outside of the classroom, Alanna had a passion for sports – specifically water sports. She began competitive swimming around 7 years old and began playing water polo in high school – something she continued to do throughout college. When it came time to decide on colleges, she decided to combine her love of water and sciences and pursue a degree in Geological Oceanography, through the University of Rhode Island, her parents’ alma mater.
While there, Alanna realized that what idealistically lead her to pursue this dream, would ultimately lead to her either teaching or writing reports for the rest of her life – neither of which had the appeal necessary to continue down that path. Ultimately, she decided to relocate back to California and finish out her college education at Cal State Northridge, in Recreation and Tourism Management.
Being that she had a background of coaching and lifeguarding for the rec department, she could make her home in recreation with this path. For the next 10 years, Alanna enjoyed the career she had chosen and was excelling in a variety of roles within recreation including Recreation Supervisor and Special Events and Sponsorship Coordinator in Carlsbad.
With her family and home base being in Mountain View, Alanna eventually decided she wanted to move back to the Bay. In the end was relocated back to the area by a startup, for their Accounts Payable team. This was great for Alanna, as it gave her the opportunity to put her math and analytical skills to use.
When Alanna wanted more growth opportunity, she chatted with her mom, an HR professional of over 35 years. Her mom always told her she belonged in HR, and after all, Alanna wanted to be in a role that would help her positively influence peoples lives. Due to her sparkling personality, she was able to get her foot in the door of the HR world in Talent Acquisition. She quickly found herself becoming a source of knowledge for the team and was able to work her way to an HR Generalist role.
When she met with the People team at Actian, she was immediately drawn to the team’s passion and dynamic. During her interview, she thought, “This is a match! It just felt right, and I recognized what I could bring to the table to a team in transformation and couldn’t wait to grow with the team.”
Another draw for Alanna to Actian is the focus on continuous learning and development. Now two months into her employment, Alanna is already taking advantage of our Profession Development Program and working towards becoming a Certified Compensation Professional (CCP). For those that have had the pleasure of meeting Alanna, you will know this perfectly aligns with her motivations of “growth and keeping it dynamic!”.
When Alanna is not at the office, she is working towards a killer tan (while still wearing at least SPF 50, because safety first) and chasing new experiences! We couldn’t be happier to have such an amazing addition to the People Team and the Actian family.