Hello and happy Friday! For this installment of the Employee Spotlight Series, we wanted to feature our newest team member, John Baker! John just joined the SpendMend team a week ago and is our new Director of Shared Services, but to some, he is a familiar face. John actually started at Business Strategy, Inc (SpendMend’s former name) in 1995, so he already knows a lot of the current SpendMend employees from back in the day! John says he is looking forward to getting to know his new co-workers and so far, the jobs been great! During his free time, John enjoys spending time with his family, coaching his kids in the variety of sports they play, getting some exercise and golfing! Some of Johns favorite courses to golf at include Bay Harbor and Arcadia, but he also frequents the Saskaton course as well. We learned from Steve Meyer’s Employee Spotlight (read here) post that a handful of SpendMend associates also golf at Saskatoon, so if any of you guys see John at the course, be sure to say hi! During the pandemic, it seemed like many people were trying out new hobbies to occupy their time. This was also true for John, as he had the sudden desire to start painting! Judging from some of his work, you would never suspect that he had only started a year ago. John is very specific to what he paints however, so be sure to read the interview to learn about where his inspiration lies and what his style of painting is. We reached out to  Jeremy Malin, VP of Operations, and he expressed his thoughts on John joining the team, saying “We are excited to have John join the SpendMend team and look forward to putting his leadership, knowledge and skills to work for our company and client base.” We’re lucky to have John on the team and hope that this helps everyone get to know him a little better. We have no doubt that he will do a great job! Thanks for everything, John!

Interview with John:

What is your role at SpendMend?
Director of Shared Services
How long have you been with SpendMend?
1 week
How did you first learn about SpendMend?
I joined BSI in 1995. After my part of BSI was acquired, I stayed in contact with my friends at SpendMend. I also followed SpendMend on social media!
What 3 words would you use to describe SpendMend?
Welcoming, progressive and team oriented (I’m counting team oriented as one word).
Why do you look forward to coming to work?
I’ve only been here for a week, but there is a sense that we are all working towards one goal.
Before working at SpendMend, what was the most unusual or interesting job you’ve ever had?
Honestly, it would have been BSI. I started when I was 22. I had no idea what an audit was or what I was getting into. The travel, being at client’s offices and learning as I went was an invaluable experience.
What is one fun fact about you?
During the pandemic, I randomly started painting dog portraits for friends. This is fun because I do not paint nor own a dog.
What type of music or podcasts do you listen to during the workday?
I enjoy 90’s rock and true crime podcasts.
What are some of your favorite bands?
For music, I enjoy the smashing pumpkins, foo fighters and Pearl Jam.
Do you have any hobbies or participate in any activities outside of work?
Other than painting dogs, I like to help coach my kids sports and I enjoy golf (which I am not good at) and exercise.
What was the best compliment you’ve ever been paid by a client or supplier?
At my last job, I interacted with clients a lot. One of my contacts from our largest client asked if she could come work for me.
What is the best part of serving the healthcare market?
It looks like there are so many opportunities to help our clients learn and grow.
What has been your experience with SpendMend community service events?
I truly believe in community service and giving back. I am looking forward to the next event.
What is your favorite in house event? (specific potluck, chili cook-off, bring your kid to work day, etc.)
I have not had the pleasure of any of these, but I am looking forward to “bring your kid to work day”. Can we leave them there too (asking for a friend)?
Do you want to shout out a co-worker who has helped or inspired you at SpendMend?
I want to give the whole team a shout out. I am excited for the opportunity.
What advice do you have for prospective candidates who want to join the SpendMend team?
My philosophy is, work hard and do the right thing.
What has been your proudest accomplishment at SpendMend?
So far…getting hired.
What is something you’re looking forward to for your future at SpendMend?
I am looking forward to getting to know my coworkers.

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