First 90 days in San Antonio

Most new jobs are measured by the first 90 days on the job. As a matter of fact when I started my new role at USAA I ordered the infamous book written by Michael D. Watkins called “The First 90 Days“.

Well, today marks 90 days since I joined USAA here in San Antonio, TX and it’s been a whirlwind of a summer loaded with the start of a new role, meeting new people and establishing our family in the San Antonio area.

One common thread with all of this change is that we feel at home as a family here in San Antonio and I want to take this moment to reflect on the first 90 day from the lens of professional, personal, and cultural perspective.

Professional

Grand Opening: USAA Financial Center in Copperas Cove, TX

First of all, my first 90 days at USAA have been everything I anticipated. I joined an association that for over 90+ years knows its member and their families. I’ve been in awe from the first day of the sense of pride that goes into being part of a team that truly goes beyond the call of duty and delivers exceptional customer service.

I’ve enjoyed the many perks of working at the home office. Perks like having multiple full service Starbucks on location. Though that isn’t necessarily a good thing for a coffee addict. Also, having multiple company stores for gifts and last minute holiday cards (that saved Mother’s day) and even an on site state-of-the-art fitness center.

It’s been great to meet people that have been at USAA their entire career with over 35+ years of service. It’s hard to fathom someone being in one location for so long in this day and age, however, I understand now that I’ve tasted the culture here in these first 90 days.

As I continue to settle into my role specifically, there have been some key wins so far and many more in the pipeline that I’m excited see go live and to witness how our current and potential new members engage with us and share their stories.

Personal

homeOn the personal side, we started the process of building a new home with Pulte Homes here in the metro-San Antonio area. This is our first experience as a family to build a new home so we’ve been exicted to follow the progress.

We are currently on track to have it completed by November of this year and I’ve been taking daily photos of the construction with the plans of creating a time lapse type video of the experience. As a social media professional, I will reserve the annoyance of sharing daily and/or weekly progress and in the spirit of quality content, look to have a fun video to tell the story at the end.

We’ve also explored some great sights in and around San Antonio. We visited Tapatio Springs in Boerne, TX and enjoyed the oasis of this Hill country golf resort. We also had a chance to go kayaking in the colorado river near downtown Austin. We’ve discovered some great restaurants in Leon Springs with The Grill and Tre Trattoria near the Alamo Heights area.

50 mile bike ride near Government Canyon State Park
50 mile bike ride near Government Canyon State Park

Since I arrived in San Antonio I’ve been also searching relentlessly for some good biking trails and road courses. I wanted to avoid the group rides for now and just go out on my own to explore. I was able to connect with a Romanian friend here in the area that is a serious cyclist and familiar with the area, so I began to ride with him and discovered some amazing rides.

From a personal goal standpoint, I did my first half-century ride through the northwest San Antonio area in August and with the Strava mobile app, I’m finding more rides and challenges.

I’m still searching for a good mountain bike trail as my bike is eager to hit a challenging trail.

Cultural

Finally, the San Antonio area has made a cultural impression on our family. We are delighted to see the blend of old Western cowboy meets Mexican influence from the food, businesses and language. We’ve done the traditional visit to the Riverwalk and the Alamo but I was more excited to eat some breakfast tacos at Pete’s Tako House.
Another unique cultural element are the Mexican “Nationals” that you hear and see in the affluent shopping and dining areas. At the same time, the friendliness and down home goodness of the San Antonians as a whole is refreshing.
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Boerne Lake Park

I’m excited along with my family to continue our journey here in this area and eager to see what my career at USAA will evolve and how we will root ourselves in the daily fabric of all that San Antonio has to offer.

One thing is clear, 90 days is just the beginning of a fun an exciting journey and God willing, a lifetime of learnings.

Eager for the 91st day and beyond!

My new role at USAA

I’m excited to announce that as of Monday May 19th, I am driving south from Dallas/Fort Worth area to San Antonio and starting a new chapter by joining the highly talented Social Business and Digital Marketing team at USAA as Director, Social Media Marketing. It’s been a long term goal of mine and my family to remain in Texas and settle in the Hill country of San Antonio. USAA is a perfect fit from so many personal and professional angles.

 

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Joining a well established company with core values that align deeply to my personal values of serving others while being able to help Military, their families and those that are in need is an added bonus. 

I’m also proud of what was done while I was at RadioShack for over 2 years. My original goal was to make social not only part of the conversation in the turn around efforts but at the core of what we did. I wanted to truly scale social at a large corporation. We were able to increase visibility and integrate social beyond the marketing team, we brought on board more support, helped kick start an amazing employee advocacy platform, lay the foundation for a community platform for over 30,000+ associates and be a part of a high risk/large reach efforts like the 2014 Super Bowl ad.

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USAA Headquarters San Antonio, TX

As I join the highly talented social and marketing organization at USAA, I’m eager to collaborate, learn and impact the long term bottom line results for such a respected and loved organization. 

USAA was one of the early brands to adopt social into their business and have been recognized in the industry by Forrester Research as best in class and most recently they continued to set the benchmark for social listening and monitoring with their Social Exchange.

Eager to start. Exciting times ahead!