Day in the life: Bernice Awodele – Office Manager at Solarcentury
In the latest of our “nice to meet you” series featuring Solarcentury people, Bernice Awodele discusses working as an Office Manager at Solarcentury HQ.
Describe your job in a couple of sentences.
As an office manager at Solarcentury, my job is completely different every single day. I deal with travel, phone calls, enquiries, admin support and basically help the company to run on a day-to-day basis. I also sit on reception which is our important “shop front” to customers and other visitors.
What does your average day look like?
The first thing I do every day is make sure all the doors are unlocked and that everything is working – that the lights are on and fire alarm is set etc. I check my emails and check the phones. Then it’s about getting the day going. If I’ve set tasks from the day before, I get those done. If there are new starters, I’ll set them set up with access cards and locker keys.
What’s it like working for Solarcentury?
Working for Solarcentury is great – I love it! Everyone is friendly. We are like a little family here. Everybody makes sure that everyone else is ok. Nobody feels that their position is above the other. People have respect for each other and bosses are approachable. It’s great to have an environment where you can sit down with your manager and discuss anything and feel like you are on the same level.
What’s the best thing about your job?
Meeting new people and helping people – especially if they are going through a difficult time or if they need help. I often get people coming to me needing help if things aren’t working or if they need extra help with something.
What kinds of people do you deal with on a daily basis?
I deal with people from the other Solarcentury offices – Benelux, Panama, Chile, Spain, Africa – so I deal with everybody. I also deal with external people and am the first point of contact for calls.
What’s different about working at Solarcentury compared to previous places?
I’ve been able to really enjoy myself in every environment that I’ve worked at. But Solarcentury is the best as I’ve made a lot of good friends here. I’ve had a lot of growth here and have really been able to develop within my role.
Tell me about your involvement with the international offices?
It’s nice because it makes things a bit more interesting. This is a company that gives back and that’s close to my heart. We are trying to make a difference in the world. Giving back to Africa through the sister charity SolarAid is really close to my heart, so knowing that this company does that means a lot to me. It’s an added bonus, so I am extremely happy.
What gets you fired up?
Knowing that people can come to me for help – and knowing that I am the person who is available to help. The fact that I am able to do that and make other people happy, makes me happy. Putting a smile on people’s faces is a big thing for me.
Do you have a good work-life balance?
On weekends I focus on winding down and having some ‘me time’. Outside of work, I like to go to church, hang out with my family and friends, go to the park and relax.
What advice would you give to someone just starting out in their office manager career?
Be organised and make sure you enjoy doing what you are doing. Otherwise you won’t put your all into it. Make sure you are approachable so that people can come to you for help. Make sure you always have a smile and work hard.
What’s the best piece of advice that you’ve been given?
Always give your best. Always believe in yourself. Always aim higher and never, ever settle.