The “Getting to Know” series is sponsored by Applied Innovation. Applied Innovation is helping to shape the future of accounts receivable management. Product development is driven by customer feedback, agency profitability and compliance and includes platforms addressing client portal access, document management, payment negotiation, Regulation E focused electronic payment authorizations and TCPA communication authorization platforms. Partner with a company who understands your business challenges and evolves to provide cutting edge technology to overcome those challenges and achieve success.
Megan McDonell is a problem solver. Whether in her current role turning data into actionable insights or if her love of true crime ended up steering her in the direction of being a detective, it’s clear that looking at something and making sense of it while also seeing things that others might not be able to see is what sets her apart from everyone else. Read on to learn more about Megan, why she likes a good meeting — and what constitutes a good meeting, and what makes her so good at trivia.
Name: Megan McDonell
Job Title: President of Business Intelligence
Company: Absolute Resolutions Corporation
Length of Time at Current Company: Two years
Length of Time in Industry: Seven years
How did you get your start in the industry?
It was kismet. We had just moved to Greenville, S.C. and I was looking for a job. I had a friend who worked at Resurgent Capital Services and she encouraged me to apply. I had a wide range of financial services industry experience before getting into collections, from retail banking to insurance licensing. I started out in Audit at Resurgent, but I was simultaneously completing a Computer Science degree, which was my first exposure to SQL. I knew I wanted a career that would let me leverage those skills and just as I completed my degree, a position in Strategy Analytics opened up – and changed my life!
What is your career highlight so far?
Building my team. I’ve gone from a one-person analytics department to managing a team of seven extremely smart and talented people. I’m so proud of the work we do and of what we’ll accomplish in the years to come!
When or how are you most productive?
There are two times when I feel truly productive. One is when I am in the zone, mastering a Gordian knot of a SQL query to turn raw data into actionable insights. The other may be an uncommon answer, but I feel very productive in a good meeting! Obviously not all meetings are good meetings but being with a group bouncing ideas off each other and coming up with innovative solutions is one of the most effective uses of my time.
Which industry professional do you admire most?
Too many to name! So many people have been a mentor to me and helped me grow and develop in my career. I honestly feel like a completely different person from when I first got my start, in terms of knowledge, skillset, and confidence, and I never would have achieved that without the people in my corner.
What is one thing you do better than everyone else?
Planning – from gift exchanges to vacations, I’m your girl!
What do you like most about this industry?
I like how small the industry feels. I’ve had such a great time getting to know people across companies and seeing people take on new challenges and succeed. It’s inspirational.
What is one thing you wish you could change about this industry?
I would love to see more of a shift toward analytics and data-driven decision making. I think we are beginning to see that in a lot of ways and I’m excited to be a part of effecting this change.
Describe a typical work day.
I’ve been working from home since before it was cool. My day starts when I get home from dropping my kids off at school and log on with a cup of coffee in hand. Depending on the day, I may have a group meeting so we can all share what we’ve been working on or a few one-on-ones to catch up with my team. Outside of meetings, I spend my time in the database pulling data together or in Power BI building and reviewing dashboards, spotting trends, and devising ways to move the needle.
If you weren’t in this industry, what would you be doing?
I love procedurals and true crime. In another life, I would be a detective or a defense attorney.
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What is your guilty pleasure?
Loaded cheese fries
What is the best advice you have ever received?
Speak up, be assertive, and ask for the things you want. The people around you aren’t mind readers and the worst thing that can happen is being told “no”.
What are you currently reading?
I’m a big fan of horror, so the answer to this question is usually something by Stephen King. Right now, however, I’m reading “We Should All Be Feminists” by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie in preparation for this year’s Women in Consumer Finance Conference.
What is one fact you’d like everyone in the industry to know about you?
I’m an information sponge! I love absorbing new information so please feel free to delve deep into the weeds of your passion with me. This also makes me excellent at trivia!
Who else would you like to see answer these questions?
Lily Wood at Rausch Sturm.
The “Getting to Know” series is sponsored by Applied Innovation. Applied Innovation is helping to shape the future of accounts receivable management. Product development is driven by customer feedback, agency profitability and compliance and includes platforms addressing client portal access, document management, payment negotiation, Regulation E focused electronic payment authorizations and TCPA communication authorization platforms. Partner with a company who understands your business challenges and evolves to provide cutting edge technology to overcome those challenges and achieve success