A Day In The Life
Posted 01 January 2019
March 2012 Intake
Brandon, a graduate of University of Colorado Boulder, trained at eWaterways whilst on the Program, and met his now wife, Sarah (same intake) just 3 weeks before both completing their year. Fast forward to now, and Brandon is Special Projects Manager with North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities and Substance Abuse Services, has been married to Sarah nee Greer for over 4 years and is the proud father of a daughter with a son due at the end of March.
Current Role: I am a Special Projects Manager with the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities and Substance Abuse Services.
My Alarm Goes off... 5:15 A.M on the days I go to the gym, 6:15 A.M when I do not. I live an hour away from my office, so I usually check emails and my schedule before I hit the road. And for weekends? I’m up when my three-year-old gets out of bed. No sleep for the weary!
I'm Responsible For…It depends on the projects I am working on. I am involved with identifying and developing strategic objectives with engaging stakeholders whose voices impact the mental health, intellectual/developmental disabilities, and substance use disorders service delivery system. Most of the projects I am involved with require continuous communication with people from a variety of teams within the Division and Department to ensure project goals are being met.
I Got The Job…I was fortunate to work under one of North Carolina’s well-respected public servants in my previous role who understood my diverse professional background would be beneficial to state government in many aspects. Long story short, my boss called the then deputy-director at the Division stating they needed to interview me. It was at my first interview with the Division when I met my current boss, and the rest they say is history.
My Typical Day... It varies on the day and the type of project I’m working on, but it consists of lots of emails, phone calls, meetings, and reporting to the Division executive level. My work also takes me across the state for external meetings.
The Culture of my Workplace... Dedicated and passionate. There are people hard at work each day to improve the lives of those we serve.
My Most Memorable Work Moment... I have two memorable moments. One of the projects I’ve been involved in since I’ve started is undergoing a significant policy change; one of the components for this project requires external stakeholders to provide feedback on proposed changes. I spent several months getting executive approval, managing logistics, and promoting the meetings through a variety of channels to achieve optimal turnout. The week the meetings were going to take place was the very same week Hurricane Florence devastated the southeastern part of the state. What was inspiring for me was the countless amount of people from my Division who willingly worked night and day to ensure continuity of services for those severely impacted by the storm. The stakeholder meetings were eventually rescheduled, but our top priority was to make sure everyone was ok.
The other memorable moment is that my team routinely conducts Mental Health First Aid Trainings for people wanting to learn strategies of how to help someone potentially experiencing a crisis and be “the bridge” until professionals can step in. I had an opportunity to plan a two-day Mental Health First Aid Training for deaf and hard of hearing individuals, which turned out to be a fantastic event. One of the best parts about my time in London for me was experiencing new cultures, and I was grateful I had the chance to help raise deaf cultural awareness through this event.
My Role Models are... First and foremost, my family. Secondly, I listen to a podcast called, “How I Built This,” which is a show about how entrepreneurs built some of the world-renowned companies. I enjoy listening to the interviews, and I’ve observed commonalities for each entrepreneur: everyone started somewhere; everyone screwed up at one point; and learned from their mistakes. I love hearing about ordinary people doing extraordinary things.
The Most Challenging Part of My Job... Governmental systematic changes require significant time to implement, so a lot of patience is needed; it may take years before the work product is complete.
The Best Part of My Job... I work with people who are brilliant in their respective fields and have spent their entire careers dedicated to serving others.
After Work... Time is a challenge when you’ve got a young family to take care of, but I love that today’s technology allows for endless possibilities. I recently took on a side-business revolving around a super-herb tea blend that is helping people with so many things, and what I love about the business is that it provides an opportunity for anyone following their entrepreneurial spirit. When I am not busy sipping tea, I am in my important role as a husband and father.
Plan B: If I wasn't doing this, I would be....Who knows where life takes us? I think I would be involved in project management elsewhere or working towards running a large-scale enterprise. I was offered a full-time position to remain in the UK with the company I interned, but I decided to turn it down because I had just started dating another Mountbatten who was in the same intake with me three weeks before the program wrapped up (perfect timing, right?). Sarah Katherine (Greer) and I will celebrate our fifth wedding anniversary this October. Several Mountbatten alums, plus a few friends we made in Europe, were at our wedding. We have a daughter with a son due at the end of March.