Every unique and talented Avantee is a co-creator of the Avant culture we love. We hope the @Avant series helps you get to know who we are, how we do what we do, and what it looks like to build your career at Avant.
Operations Associate for Operations Strategy Team
Joined Avant in 2021
What’s it like to work @Avant? We asked Abby for her take on our culture, and here’s what she said:
1. How would you describe Avant’s culture?
It’s your ideal group project: a bunch of highly motivated people coming together, all committed to solving their piece of the puzzle, with support and collaboration if you hit an obstacle or need to work through something.
I have also been very impressed by Avant’s ability to successfully implement a flat organizational structure. From day 1, I was in the room with leaders of the company. You are always encouraged to express your opinion or share your knowledge.
And while we’re a bunch of highly motivated people all focused on getting the work done, we recognize that it has to be balanced with fun and your non-work life. The acceptance of that balance really encourages people to bring their full selves to work, and it makes connecting with your fellow Avantees very easy.
2. Why are you happy/successful here?
I am happiest when I’m continuously learning. And Avant challenges me every day to learn something new—like SQL. I didn’t have any SQL skills when I was hired, so for the first couple months, part of my work assignment was to learn it. We have a culture that encourages you to go investigate and learn all you can, then actually apply what you’ve learned, and then learn from the results. You aren’t boxed in by what you know, and there’s an expectation that when you don’t know something, you’ve got the space to learn it. And the flat nature of the company means you get to connect with people across the organization who support you as you go. So, continuous learning and meeting new people has kept me very happy.
3. What’s a superpower you get to apply at your job?
My detail-oriented nature really lends itself well to my job. The ultimate goal of my work is to ensure Avant’s customers are getting a top-notch customer experience, and to look into any friction or frustration in their experience. That means I have to understand what the current process is and where we can eliminate unnecessary steps or make it flow better, and then identify how our training and reference materials and the info we provide the customer should change accordingly. Being detail-oriented also helps me ask better questions and see downstream impacts of new projects and processes, so I can make sure any changes are as easy as possible on our specialists and customers. Being detail-oriented helps me really pay attention to all those little steps they go through.
4. If you had to describe who you are and not mention your work at all, what would you say?
Well, I grew up in Arkansas with a big family. My favorite place is the dock at our lake house. I think because of my big family, I’m very loud, and I’m a helper—I always want to help people. But then, I also like to be independent and do my own thing.
I’m a learner—I got very into podcasts during Covid—and I’m very organized and detail oriented. A to-do list and spreadsheet maker. I am also a big Notre Dame fan. I love living in Chicago where it’s a quick trip back for games.
5. When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be a pilot. Once, I even got to sit in the co-pilot seat of a small plane, and that just grew the enthusiasm. And then in a raffle, I won a free flying lesson. Still to this day, if you offered me flying lessons, I would say yes.