Spotlight on Women: Amanda Harris
Meet the Area Vice President of San Diego for AT&T Mobility
Amanda Harris | Photo by Becca Batista
Where are you from?
My hometown was St. Louis, but I’m a military child, so I grew up all over.
Prior to your move to San Diego, where were you located?
I spent five years in Atlanta and before that I was in Chicago. I joined AT&T in 2000. I started in an entry-level position and was recruited from a college career fair. After nine months, I received my first promotion. In the AT&T organization, your progress is based on the skill sets that you have.
A career is not a sprint; it’s a marathon. I was chief of staff to the president of retail and held director positions in operations and sales for Mobility.
Do you have a family?
Yes, my husband is a pediatric chiropractor and we have an 18-month-old son. The move has been easy because my husband is incredibly supportive and we share parenting responsibilities.
How do you balance work and family?
I manage 54 AT&T-exclusive points of distribution and 50 national retail locations. I travel a lot, but mostly around San Diego. I schedule time in my day to FaceTime with my son. It is an important part of my day. We spend quality time together as a family at the end of the day.
You touch people’s lives when you lead, and you don’t always realize how helpful you are to a person.
Do you have a mentor?
My mentor was a supervisor I had previously worked for. One of the things I’m proud of is that I’ve kept in touch with my previous supervisors. I also have mentors who are my peers.
How do you mentor others?
I block out time every month to meet with staff to mentor them. I’m the executive sponsor for the San Diego chapter of Women of AT&T. I want to be an example for women who work for me. You touch people’s lives when you lead, and you don’t always realize how helpful you are to a person.
What is your role in the community?
I serve as an active member of the AT&T Veterans association. We’re very committed to helping veterans in San Diego.
What is your greatest accomplishment?
My husband and my son, who is our miracle baby. Having a child made a difference in my career. I was focused on career over family, and when I decided I wanted to have a family, AT&T was extremely supportive. I received a promotion when I was seven months pregnant and still took three months off.
To what do you attribute your success?
I am who I am because of my military upbringing. I spent two years of my high school in Japan, and that prepared me for my life today. I learned a lot of the best practices for my career from the president of AT&T Retail. I learned how to balance family and work and be successful at both.
How do you see your future?
I have to meet personal and professional goals and look at the characteristics of the next job versus what the next job is. I’m learning the company from a different vantage point. I’ve been afforded a lot of opportunities by working for a large company. People are what make it easier to navigate through the company. Even though AT&T is a very large company, we have many different ways to learn, and video is the best form of communication for learning and training.