no one really knows what i do for work. even if i explain it, people still don't really understand, and no one's heard of my company, Acosta. this is all fine with me because i love my job and it's fun to remain slightly mysterious. we have about 60 people in our bentonville office on the wal-mart team, and many of my fellow employees have already become my good friends. i've never met anyone more encouraging than our wm team president, brian. throughout my interviews and everything involving our unexpected pregnancy (that happened before my official start date), he's remained super positive and excited to have me as a part of his team. the office culture is refreshing--we have softball teams, charity events, food days, holiday parties, and from what i've observed, everyone truly lives out the values of our company. i've seen several of our team leads at church and was pleasantly surprised when we prayed as a group for our christmas luncheon food. plus, almost everyone is out of the office by 5pm, and the company strives to promote a healthy work-life balance.
anyway, i am participating in the leadership development program in the office, which is almost like an honors program in the corporate world (with its perks and downsides). the program gives exposure to all areas of the business: retail, marketing (analytics), and sales (client relations). in retail, we go to different wal-marts to check on our clients' products. my team is focused on clorox, welch's, minute maid, ocean spray, and ruiz foods, so i spend many hours looking at these products and gathering competitive information.
along the way, i get to meet lots of interesting people. today i ran into dr. lindsey duncan, ceo of genesis today (i didn't know who he was until i got home and looked on their website). he was scanning all of my minute maid products to check on category sales with his executive team, so we talked for a few minutes and he mentioned that he is good friends with the ceo of acosta, nice.
i've always been a fairly (no very [sarah how do you use that cool strike through feature??]) outgoing person, so i love meeting people in my stores. being pregnant has only made me more friendly because every day 10-15 strangers ask me about the baby, especially other pregnant women and new mothers. i have to admit that i love the attention, but i also love the excuse it gives to strike up conversations with other strangers. there's something so comforting about knowing that we all have a common bond of experiencing pregnancy and motherhood.
before i became pregnant, i could've cared less about babies. i never really saw the big thrill of holding infants and only bought people baby presents if i was invited to a shower and felt obligated. now i am addicted to looking at other mothers' facebook pictures of their newborns and reading about others pregnancy stories. i am amazed at how many non-mothers (?) have sent baby kehrli presents and how seemingly genuinely interested my single friends are for the baby. props to you--it means a ton to me and i am so thankful for your thoughtfulness! it's amazing how being pregnant has already changed my mindset toward mothers. now i soak up every bit of information i can get about pregnancy and parenting, and i wouldn't have it any other way.
here's to hoping i can still be a good friend to my single and non-barren (ha, there must be a better word) friends. i try not to talk about the baby unless someone asks how it is going, and then i try to be brief even though it is hard to gush about everything i am learning, thinking and feeling. that's why i have my blog i guess :). love you all and hope you are having wonderful weeks!!