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March 27, 2024 | 30 Mins Read

A Multifaceted Approach to Creating Sustainable Service with Sarah McKay

March 27, 2024 | 30 Mins Read

A Multifaceted Approach to Creating Sustainable Service with Sarah McKay


Episode 258

In this episode of the Future of Field Service podcast, host Sarah Nicastro is joined by Sarah McKay, Vice President of Service Delivery at Concentrix, to discuss her career as a woman in service, her passion for sustainability, and the connection between diversity and sustainability.

Sarah is an experienced Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) leader dedicated to fostering inclusive spaces where people of various backgrounds can flourish. With over 26 years in the field, she began her journey as a Team Lead at HCL BPO. By 2006, she advanced to Concentrix, where she effectively managed a multicultural team across various domains, including digital, social media, technical support, customer service, and sales.

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Sarah Mckay: Personally, I feel so strongly that sustainability needs to be at the core of how business runs, right? We need to operate ethically in a way that improves our environment and contributes to our local communities because it makes business sense as well as it being the right thing to do. And so for that to be true, everyone in the company needs to be involved. It can't be a specific team or 20 people that work over there in that function that do our ESG stuff. It has to be something that everybody in the organization has accountability for. And I suppose when we start, then everybody does something. We position our ESG goals alongside our performance goals. So when we do our annual appraisals, when we submit our goals, we have our business goals, we have our personal development goals, and we have our social goals where we submit one thing that we can do to make things better.

Sarah Nicastro: Welcome to the Future of Field Service podcast, where we deliver both information and inspiration on how to differentiate your business through service and lead through change. I'm your host, Sarah Nicastro, and I'm here to guide you through conversations around the trends that matter most, from business transformation and customer-centric innovation to the service evolution and attributes of effective leadership. Join us on this journey as we welcome industry leaders, visionaries, and experts to share their personal stories of change, challenges, triumphs, and transformation. Let's dive in. Welcome to the Future of Field Service podcast. I'm your host, Sarah Nicastro. Today is the last interview in our focus in the month of March on talking about the International Women's Day theme of inspiring inclusion, sharing women's stories, journeys, and amplifying women's voices, as well as talking about the issues that are relevant to us creating more diversity in service and inspiring inclusion. So thrilled to be here for our last featured episode to talk about creating sustainable service. So I'm welcoming to the podcast today, Sarah McKay, who is the Vice President for Service Delivery at Concentrix. Sarah, welcome to the Future of Field Service podcast.

Sarah Mckay: Hi, thank you for having me.

Sarah Nicastro: It's Sarah Squared. I love it. And we both spell our name the same way, which is just makes it easier for me to not make any mistakes. So thank you for being here. Thrilled for our chat today.

Before we get into it all, just tell everyone a little bit about yourself, your role, Concentrix, whatever you would like to share.

Sarah Mckay: Okay. So my name is Sarah McKay. I have a husband, three children and two dogs. They are all boys. So I live in a very high energy environment. Personally, I love to travel. I love adventure travel, particularly hiking, mountain climbing, things like that. And in three weeks from now, I'll be heading to Patagonia to trek. So super excited about that. Workwise, Concentrix, we're a customer experience company. We combine human talent with technology to design, build and run customer journeys at scale. Like you said, I'm a VP of service delivery and I've worked here for almost 18 years and I've always been in an operational role. So for 15 years, I managed regional operations up to about 7000 people. My job is to make sure our people are happy and successful and our clients are happy and successful. And 18 years sounds like a long time, but really in that time, our business has changed and grown hugely. We've had seven acquisitions in that time. So I've had major opportunities to develop and change what I'm doing. For the last two years, I've moved into a more strategic role. I lead a center of excellence for performance management. So I define why we measure, what we measure, what our go-to processes are, and create an operating system to guide the team. But I also represent client success on our ESG leadership team. So working through our environmental or diversity targets and goals and working on those projects that contribute to our overall commitments.

Sarah Nicastro: Awesome. What a journey. Okay, so I have a couple of questions that aren't on our outline. How old are your boys?

Sarah Mckay: My boys are 15, 12, and 8. And I can tell you that just before we started recording this, my 12-year-old sent me a text message saying, Mom, guess what? I've got a girlfriend. So I am completely challenged. I'm not quite sure what to do with that information. But yeah.

Sarah Nicastro: Oh, yeah. I don't think you can ever be ready for that. And then my second question related to what you shared is, so you have Patagonia coming up, but you know, thus far that you've been, what has been your favorite adventure travel destination?

Sarah Mckay: Without a doubt, Kilimanjaro. So this time last year, I was at the top of Kilimanjaro in Tanzania. So it's pre-sanding mountain in the world. And I can't even tell you to stand at the top of Kilimanjaro and watch the sunrise over Kenya. It's the only point in the world where you can see the actual curvature of the earth because there's nothing on the horizon. It was just the most special experience. And my poor husband thought that that would scratch the itch on my adventure plans. And all it's done is introduced me to more people who've done more things and added more to my list. So once I go to Patagonia, then when I come back, I want to go to Slovenia and climb Mount Triglav. And the Julian Alps. So I now have a long list of things to do and places to go.

Sarah Nicastro: Okay. All right. So we're going to have to have a separate chat about this because I want to bring on some things, but I love it. Okay. So as you mentioned, you have been with Concentrix 18 years. You were for quite a big chunk of that focused on the strategy and execution part of it and now focus quite a bit on change leadership and ESG, et cetera. And so today we're going to be talking both about the, you know, the, you know, the, you know, the, you know, the, you know, about sustainability in service and also how that intersects with the themes of International Women's Day and this idea of diversity and talk a bit about your journey as well. So to start, when you think about the ways in which your company and other companies can be thinking about how to make service more environmentally friendly. So thinking about the environmental piece first, what are the things that you're going to be thinking about? And then I'm going to What's the perspective you have on that? What's the lens in which you look at that? It's a huge topic. It's something that I think everyone knows is important. People are committed to, obviously to varying extents, but how do you frame your approach to that journey at Concentrix?

Sarah Mckay: So there's so much commentary and pieces in the news and drama about the environmental crisis, climate change, all of those things. I think it can be quite overwhelming and it feels too big and people don't know where to start. So therefore they don't start and we do nothing, right? The approach that we take is we are a company of 450,000 people now, nearly half a million people in our company. So we have huge opportunity and huge responsibility to do something. So our starting point is every one of those people did one thing. Small or big, we would have a huge combined impact. That's where we start from. Personally, I feel so strongly that sustainability needs to be at the core of how business runs, right? We need to operate ethically in a way that improves our environment, contributes to our local communities, because it makes business sense, as well as it being the right thing to do. And so for that to be true, everyone in the company needs to be involved. It can't be a specific team or 20 people that work over there in that function that do our ESG stuff. It has to be something that everybody in the organization has accountability for. And I suppose when we start, then everybody does something. We position our ESG goals alongside our performance goals. So when we do our annual appraisals, when we submit our goals, we have our business goals, we have our personal development goals, and we have our social goals where we submit one thing that we can do to make things better. And that kind of helps. Drives that one concentric culture within the whole organization. So we do have teams of specialists who work on very specific and scientific things like our carbon contribution targets. That's scientific, that needs help. But we have 450,000 pledges from our game changers that could range from litter picking. It could be that they're going to support a local food shelter. It could be that they're going to take up composting. Everybody makes their own personal contribution in line with what they can do. And then that gives us overall a massive impact. And the truth is, it actually helps us build our employee engagement and our sense of belonging with the company. Because we can join people together. So if you live in Portugal and you want to do a beach clean, you can bring your team together and go and do that as a team building exercise. It hits multiple goals as well as doing the right thing. And one of the best things that I've done in my entire career has been leading what we call project change within our business. And it's a partnership with an organization called One Young World, who are amazing. But we go out and we ask the business, give us your ideas, tell us one project you'd love to do if you had the chance, if you were given the time, if you were given the resources to be able to do it. And we pick the top 10 ideas that come into us. And we have supported those and mentored those, given them the resources they need to deliver in our business. And what those people have done is huge. And they're from every level in our business, right from entry level, through the management level, through to accountants, through to salespeople, everybody. And these are things like we've had a girl in Brazil who had set up a migrant employment and refugee program. We've employed 70 migrants in Brazil through her training package, but not just giving them employment, help them settle. We have a girl in Brazil who is really passionate about bees and how bees support the ecosystem. She's adopted 600,000 bees. And in the next couple of years, we'll push that to 5 million. It's really opening up the eyes of our team to say, we're serious about it. We give you the resources. We help you to deliver and really just lights a fire under people and encourages them to do something. And they then in turn encourage the people around them to do something. And the effect is just like a ripple throughout the business. But that has given me so much energy over the last year to then take it to the next level. And I've just been on the rounds of completing roadshows to launch Project Change 2024. So we'll have another 10 people can do another 10 amazing things. And that'll be our growing network within the business from an activist point of view.

Sarah Nicastro: I love that. That's an amazing initiative. And, I think the point about how it helps with employee engagement and helps build that sense of purpose and connection to the company is a really good point. Thinking, I guess, taking a step back, right? And just thinking about advice for others, right? I think the point you made is a good one, which is because it's such a tremendous responsibility and a broad challenge, people can get stuck on how do we get started? So I think, are there ways, you talked when we spoke before about the idea of not needing to completely change things, but looking for opportunities to embed change into standard practices. Do you have any examples of that that you could share so that people can get a sense of how to take some of those steps without feeling like they have to change the whole world at once?

Sarah Mckay: Yeah, so I think the basic starting point for me is I don't know all the things. I don't have all the answers. I don't know all the solutions to all the problems, right? I am not going to be able to solve climate crisis and food scarcity and all of those different challenges that we have in the world. So I think it was really important to me to talk to the team. First of all, what are you passionate about? And we will see that depending on the country that people are in, they will have different focuses based on what's going on around them. So some countries are really experiencing significant issues through climate crisis. So they will be most focused on energy reduction and how we reduce our energy. But we go out and ask them. And in the UK, for example, the projects that came to us from the UK that people most want to work on are things around poverty. How do we support people who are struggling right now? How do we help with food banks? How do we contribute? And it doesn't have to be fundraising. We think of things in a give money, give time, give things triad. If you don't have the money to fundraise, well, then go and donate time. And that's how we structure it. But my starting point was to sit down and ask people, what would you like to do? In the framework of our ESG goals, what kind of most gets you excited and what would make you feel most like you had been able to do something? And then you can relate it personally back to that individual. For me, mentorship is something that I get hugely involved in and promoting women in business. And so I give my time to mentor schoolgirls in leadership because. That I can see the difference I'm making in that. My input to how do we reduce our carbon footprint in the business is now going to be great because I don't know. I don't know the answers. I don't have those skill sets. I think about what skills have I got that I can give to somebody else. And then somebody else will have the skills to calculate our carbon footprint and be able to reduce our utility consumption. And that's where that person's skills can most be involved. And we also sought out organizations who can help us. So One Young World are a great organization to be involved in. And they give you another level of mentorship and support for your team to help them understand how to develop their ideas and take them forward. Yeah, I think the basic starting block is where are you in the world? What are the primary challenges that you're facing in your region, in your town? And how can your staff help to make it better?

Sarah Nicastro: Yeah, and I love that point about step one is ask the question and do some listening, right? Because I think that's probably why it's so closely tied to employee engagement, because you aren't saying, here's what's important to Concentrix. Can you be involved? You're asking what's important to them and structuring the initiative that way, which makes sense. Okay, so the next area I want to talk about is around well-being. So can you talk a little bit about why well-being is such an important topic across what sort of layers? What's your take on this as a focus?

Sarah Mckay: So well-being is something we've really started to talk about in a lot of depth in the last maybe three years. And when I think about it, well-being has... Two meanings for me. We have our physical well-being and we have our emotional and mental well-being. And they're related, but two different focus areas. And when I think about physical well-being, right, it's looking after yourself and looking after your team, but recognizing things like burnout, having the tools and the environment and plates that gives people the opportunity to have conversations in psychological safety, safety, to talk about working styles, to be respectful of people working hours, especially in a global organization. If it's two o'clock in the afternoon, my time and I need information, I need to be respectful that it might be three in the morning for somebody else. So just not going to get it. That's not reasonable. Making sure and being observant that people are taking breaks, that they're taking the right time off, that they're not just extending their shifts. Globally and ending up working over 16 hours. And I think as leaders, we need to be really conscious that we model that behavior. So if I'm answering emails at one o'clock in the morning, that sets the tone for, well, maybe I should be doing that too. And that example flows down through the organization. So I know that I need to show that I value time away from work, that I value outside interests and that I respect people's personal time. And I, my team will tell you, I have a common phrase that I start with where I say to people, if you can't do the job that I'm asking you to do in 40 hours, then either you're not doing it right or you're not capable of doing it. So I don't give brownie points for somebody, you know, staying on and working to 10 o'clock at night. That's a red flag to me, not a green flag. And then as finding the physical wellbeing, there's the emotional wellbeing. And a lot of people talk about emotional wellbeing and supporting people in times of crisis and times of need. And I think that's a really important thing to do. And I think that's neat, but it has to be more than just having processes or EAP schemes around mental health. It's back to that concept of having a safe space where people feel okay to say, I'm not okay today. I'm struggling today. Or that they can say, I don't like that idea. I don't like where we're going. I don't like what we're doing as a business. I don't think this is right. And I think that starts from, you talked about it earlier on that sense of purpose in the business. So it's such an old story, but I love that story of the janitor in NASA. And when he was asked what he did in NASA, he said he put people on the moon, right? I love that because everybody in our business has impact. Everybody, regardless of what job they do. And just because I have the title vice president does not mean that I have greater impact than anybody else. I've been here for longer. I love sitting down with the team and figuring out what is our sense of purpose? What is it that we're trying to do? What is our why? When you think about the side and side, and all of his teaching and getting that collective vision. And I think all of that flows then into emotional wellbeing because you've got a yardstick and this is what we want to do. This is who we want to be. And if we deviate from that, then people have a clear idea that they can challenge. And in that space, I think that helps support emotional wellbeing from the foundation. Yeah.

Sarah Nicastro: Do you feel like wellbeing is a topic that gets as much focus as it deserves?

Sarah Mckay: Yeah, we talked about this in the prep. I think when times are good, it's really easy to talk about well-being and really easy to talk about employee satisfaction. And that when the pressure increases and where performance isn't maybe where you want it to be, sometimes that collaborative and supportive approach starts to show cracks, right? You start to see more of the traditional command and control management styles that are driving cost optimization and things like that. And that's where people's workloads start to increase and people start to feel the pressure. And it's tough, right? It's really tough. But I think within Concentrix, the thing that helps us fight this tendency, and we're not perfect and we don't do it right every time for sure. We invest really heavily in company culture. We have nine culture statements. And actually, I've just been in London for two days with over a thousand people where we talked about our culture and has it changed and does it still fit? How do we live that? But why that's really important is because the whole leadership team say, this is what we want. This is what we expect. This is how we should interact with each other. And this is the sort of environment that we want to create. And that creates the language to challenge it if it's not happening. So if somebody is showing those cracks and if they're driving pressure and stress and anxiety in the business, it says, well, you're not really living up to that culture statement or I'm not really feeling that we're operating in line with our culture. And it depersonalizes the conversation and hopefully allows people to challenge. But sometimes that inclination to drive short-term success is overwhelming because you know, if you just push, push, push, you know you can get there. You can get to that number. But you also know you might break people along the way. And that's kind of a hard balance to really want to hit this number and I really want to look after my people. But the research points towards the fact that companies who stick to their culture have the sense of belonging, have a strong ESG policy, show commitment to well-being. A better growth race. It's better to do things in the right way. The numbers are there. Your business will be more sustainable. And Steven Bartlett, Simon Sinek, KPMG, Deloitte, all of those big organizations, all say that companies who drive purpose and sustainability perform above market average. So even if you're dealing with somebody who's a bit... I really about lovely concepts like wellbeing or like diversity. The hard facts are there and you can make comparisons between here's a company doing the right thing all the time. Here's a company that's just driving bottom line exclusively all the time. They're also different. So logically, for me, if people feel like a company cares about them and cares about the planet, they're more likely to care about the company and care about the results that we get. And so the results are mutually beneficial.

Sarah Nicastro: Yeah, I agree. I think what's interesting, I was thinking of two things as you were sharing. One is, I agree with you and we did talk in our prep about the fact that when we talk about employee engagement and well-being and company culture, there can be this focus on it that is tested when it comes down to those hard decisions of, do I push too hard to hit this short-term metric? Or do I believe in the approach? And as you said, very staff-based. I think it can also happen the other way. In the sense of when times are bad, particularly with an individual employee or in a situation like COVID, we saw more focus on mental health and well-being than ever before. So it's almost like when we reach a crisis point, then it can be like, okay, let's scramble and figure this out. What do you need? And I guess what I'm trying to impart is we need to not let it. Get to that point. It should be something that's part of the everyday. So people shouldn't need to reach a breaking point to speak up, right? They should be able to do so beforehand. And that's obviously the responsibility of individual leaders and the company culture. The other point I just wanted to make going back to what you said about like being conscious of your time online and when you're messaging people, things like that. I've heard so many stories about the impact. Thinking about... The focus on women this month and as a mom myself. Thinking about the impact that that has also specifically from male leaders. So male leaders being conscious of showing that example of not always being on, showing that example of doing a school pickup or attending this event and how that helps normalize it as not only a thing moms will want to do, but that any parent should have the ability to do at times or have that balance. I was just thinking about that as well. Okay, so the next area that I want to talk about is diversity and how it sort of, so this leads into the focus of the month, but how it also factors into sustainability. So can you talk about that connection?

Sarah Mckay: Yeah, so diversity, we're all in the service industry, right? It's our job to service the customers, our direct customers, our clients, customers. We're all, we probably all live and breathe by our CSAT, right? How happy people are with us and whether we're doing a good job, as well as the efficiency of that service, reducing costs to serve, all of those metrics. But we're servicing a diverse population, right? Our customers are not all white middle-aged men. They are all races, all genders, all ages, all religions. So if we don't have people in the service industry who are making decisions about how to serve those people, then we're just not going to have the right answer. So for me, diversity means that everybody comes with a different perspective, different learned experience, different backgrounds, different preferences. So if we have all of those people at the table deciding what the plan of service looks like, then we get a better answer to our customers, get better efficiency, get better cost to serve and all of those things. So for me, diversity means innovation and growth. And if we have new people, new experiences, we'll get new answers. If we have the same people making the same decisions, we'll get the same answers. And that's why diversity of thought is so important to me. And it's not anywhere in International Women's Day, but it's not just based on women, right? It's based on religion, it's based on age. And the more diversity, the more different people with different perspectives that you can have at the table, the better the quality of the conversation is. And sometimes it's awkward, right? Sometimes I don't like the answers because I don't understand. No, I'm not comfortable with that. It's better to have that conversation and understand because we're all representing a portion or a subset or a cross-section of the community. So essentially, we're all championing our groups when we come to the table with ideas.

Sarah Nicastro: Yeah. And I think that ties back to the cultural tenets that you have of it is better if we're all challenged and if we can do so respectfully and we can do so to align to our objectives and those sorts of things, then it, like you said, it creates context for people to operate within so that even if a conversation is uncomfortable because it's challenging you, it's not uncomfortable because any single party is being made to feel uncomfortable or different. It's more so just because it's a learning experience. Yeah. So thinking about the theme of inspiring inclusion, right? You've been at Concentrix about 18 years. So that's a good chunk of time to see a whole lot of change and transformation and innovation. What have you witnessed in terms of the diversity? And what are your thoughts on what needs to happen, not only within your business, but in service overall to create more diverse, inclusive, and equitable organizations?

Sarah Mckay: Yeah, so in some respects, there's been a lot of progress. We are being challenged to report on our gender equality, to be public about our percentages of whether it's people with disability or women in leadership or whatever it is. We have to declare in some countries our gender pay gap. So those are all positive steps. And we actively target in Concentrix our percentage of females in leadership, not through quotas, but through internal development and promotion. I was at an International Women's Day event the other day, and the most depressing fact in the world that I heard was that it's going to take, at the rate we're progressing now, it's going to take another 136 years before we achieve gender parity. And I thought, God, I thought we'd move further than that. The fundamental issues of childcare responsibility, flexible working arrangements, sometimes leadership style that sees women stopping at a certain level and not being prepared to move any further are still real issues. My own personal journey with this has been really interesting. I've always had male bosses, but I've been lucky in that I've had really supportive male bosses who've challenged me and pushed me on. And one boss in particular, at the start of my career, he kept pushing me to join networks like Women in Business or those sorts of organizations. And I fought him and refused to join because my view back when I was like 20-odd was I do not need special events to attend. I can network perfectly and happily in a mixed environment. And I took it really like defensively that he was asking me to do this. But through time, when you read stats like 136 years, my perspective has completely changed on that because the truth is women are starting from a lower base, right? We have more things and different things to deal with to get to the same place that men are at now. And so I actually have completely gone. And I feel that it's the responsibility of women who have made it in leadership roles. To seek out and support the next cohort of female leaders coming on because we can prepare them for the journeys and the challenges that they're going to have and we should be so that they don't have to experience the same challenges maybe that we did. Now I seek out groups and organizations who support women in business. I work with a local not-for-profit called Sisters Inn who work with 17-year-old schoolgirls to show them what it's like to be a leader in business. So they start to think about that as a career rather than teacher, nurse, doctor, lawyer. And we have a network of women in Concentrix which champions women in our business to support. And I honestly believe mentorship is one of the most powerful tools that we have as women to support each other and leave the ladder down as people coming along. I don't think I have all the answers to creating a more diverse organization, but I have a very logical mind and where I always start is to start with the reporting. So where are you at right now? What does diversity look like across your organization right now? Are there career levels or departments or functions where there's a clear gap? And if there is, that's where you go and you start to ask the question on why are women not coming into this function? Why do you not employ women? And then that starts to build your action plan for what you need to do next. And it'll be different in every function that you go into. But understanding that dynamic, I think, is really key. And I also think that being clear as an organization that diversity matters and it's valued and there's a business sense to it. So if I go back to better decision making, better outcomes, better results in a diverse environment. Setting that as the expectation rather than you need to get 50% diversity. I think that leads to quotas and I think quotas are really damaging both for women and for the business. But to encourage people to spend time thinking about how to achieve representation. And there's all sorts of leadership programs and mentorship and creating networks that will then start to shift the results. But knowing where to start is key. And I think something you said earlier is really important. Yeah. And I think that's really important. The rule of allyship can't be underestimated. So I think sometimes men feel like they are being disadvantaged if we are focusing on women to move into leadership roles. But actually, we need men to help model the behaviors that allow women to succeed. Not at the expense of men, but alongside men. So you know, our network of women includes, you know, as many men as women because they need to understand what our experience is like. I understand how to support us within the business and then understand what part they have to play in that story. And I think if we do those things that you know kind of helps turn it from a spreadsheet exercise if you need to hit this number to actually being something that's sustainable and grows within the business. But it certainly takes time. 

Sarah Nicastro: I love that you shared you know your feeling about those women's groups early on because I've been challenged in creating content on this platform about women in service or talking specifically about gender equity or gender purity or talking about some of the challenges women face. And when I get that feedback, it's often, if you want equality, stop talking about it as its own thing. And I have reflected on that because I don't take feedback lightly and I want to think through it. But I think at the end of the day, I would love for it to not be necessary, but it still feels necessary. And I think for me, that's because sharing stories is a powerful way for people to understand that while there is in many organizations, these varying degrees of focus or goals around diversity, when you get into the layers of the business, there are often still very toxic biases, situations, experiences that do not create environments that women can thrive in. And so, the only way that I think we create better awareness about those things is to share them, to speak up both within the organization and in platforms like this, where we can share those things with one another and with others. So to me, that's really important. And I also agree that, I think women should feel a call to help others. I also think men should feel a responsibility to play a huge role in hopefully shortening that 136-year metric to the extent they can. We heard last week from Daniel, who talked about why he feels passionate about this topic and the actions that he's taking in his organization to really, I'm going to go back to that, but what I'm really trying to say is, I think that when we talk about It goes back to that focus on inclusion. Like you can have these, to your point, when people set these diversity goals, these benchmarks, it's, you can argue like what you measure gets attention. And so fine. But at the same time, if you are creating a goal to bring more women into an organization where they don't feel valued, they don't feel supported, you don't want to hear what anyone, not just women, anyone, anyone actually has to say. That's the difference, right? That value of diversity that you spoke about earlier comes from that diversity of thought. And that's only possible not when we're just trying to hit a quota, but when we value including all sorts of different people because we know it will make the organization stronger. So I think there is still a lot of work to do. And so that's why I think conversations like this are important to have and the work that you're doing both within the business to appropriately challenge, to advocate, to support, and then the work you're doing outside of the business to help young women see different potentials for themselves. It's hard work, but it's admirable and it's the right thing to do. So I really appreciate you coming. And sharing your perspective. And I guess my last question would just be after 18 years as in service and as a leader, is there any final thoughts, anything you would want to say to young women starting out or to anyone on the topics that we've been talking about today?

Sarah McKay: Yeah, so I think in the last 17 years, if I went back, how would I do things differently? I think I don't have all the answers, right? I think in my early career, I felt that I probably should. And if I was asked a question, I should know the answer to it. And that's not the case, right? So I think if I had asked more questions and been brave enough to ask more questions, I probably would have got things done a lot easier. And yeah, I would have learned more things. I think that was the first key learn is that if I don't know something, most likely somebody else in the room won't know it either. So just be brave and ask the question. And I think related to diversity. I think the core element of diversity is not to have the numbers match, not to have this percentage of women, this percentage of men, this percentage of people who are from the LGBT community, the percentage of the race. It's to have representation. And it's not that you need to be like them to get to that role. It's that we all bring something and we bring something different and unique. And that is valuable. And I think sometimes when you start your career and 17 years ago, you think, well, I need to be like him. I need to be like that person because they're really successful. So I'll model that behavior. And actually, you're in the role you're in because of what you bring. And that's different to everybody else. So those are the two learns that I have. And I love to lead through collaboration. I'm not a, I do you, I say you do, you type of leader. So I love getting everybody's input into a problem. I love it when somebody has an idea that I haven't even thought of. And going through that process of getting to the solution, together spending my time asking people with opinions and thoughts rather than just thinking about my own and then telling everybody else how clever I am. That's my style of leadership. And it doesn't have to be confrontational, but I am genuinely interested in people. I love hearing people's stories and I'm honest with my thoughts and those that honesty and openness. I think it's something that Concentrix has helped me learn and develop over the last 17 years and has given me. It's been to make mistakes, to relearn, to have it, to do things differently. So I've been very, very lucky to grow my career here. 

Sarah Nicastro: I love what you said. And I think that's, it's a great note to end on, but I think part of the power of diversity is that sense of freedom that no one person needs to know everything or be good at everything. But if you bring a group of people together that have varied experiences and knowledge and insights and perspective, then together you can achieve these great things. I was nodding and smiling because often now when I speak, when I do a keynote or a session and event, people will come up to me and say like, oh, that was so great. You're natural. And I think back to when I first started, it was very similar. I was horrible at it because I was on stage thinking I have to be the smartest person in the room if I'm going to stand up here and speak to everyone. And over time I realized like, no, actually, if I just be myself, that's when people appreciate what I'm saying. And value my contribution. And when I leaned into that, that's when things changed and I became more comfortable, but I also became a lot better at what I was doing because I wasn't trying to be something I wasn't. I was just embracing the fact that like you said, we all have unique value. And if you just bring that to the table and are willing to learn and listen and work well with others, that's where the beauty of it comes from. So. Thank you so much, Sarah, for coming and spending some time with me and sharing your experiences. I really appreciate it.

Sarah McKay: It's been great. Thank you.

Sarah Mckay: Yes. If you've missed any of our other podcasts from this month, I encourage you to go back and have a listen. You can find them all at The Future of Field Service podcast is published in partnership with ISS. You can learn more at As always, thank you for listening. Thank you for listening to The Future of Field Service podcast. We hope today's conversation has provided you with a light bulb moment or given you some valuable food for thought. To learn more about any of the topics discussed in this episode, visit us at If you enjoyed this episode, please don't forget to rate us on your favorite podcast platform to help others join the conversation. Also remember to hit the subscribe button and turn on notifications so you don't miss a future episode. The Future of Field Service podcast is published in partnership with IFS. To learn more, visit On behalf of everyone at Future of Field Service, I'm Sarah Nicastro. Thank you for listening.