Published On Jan 20, 2021
in Leadership & Development and PECO Culture
Our first Woman Leader of PECO for 2021 is Hannah Harper. Hannah joined PECO in March of 2018 as a Property Accountant working in the company’s fixed assets team on over 300 properties. While in that role, she was charged with the implementation of a new fixed asset software system which successfully enhanced the team’s reporting format, delivery and speed. In September of 2019 Hannah was promoted to Senior Property Accountant where she was once again instrumental in effecting a variety of process improvements. Hannah was promoted to Corporate Accountant just a few months later in December of 2019. True to her commitment to, and passion for, growth and new opportunities, Hannah recently accepted the role of Financial Analyst.
Hannah’s rapid rise in the accounting team and recent opportunity to take on a new role in finance, is a testament to her leadership, acumen and commitment to continuous improvement. Hannah is currently pursuing a master’s degree in real estate development. Prior to joining PECO, she spent almost seven years with FCN bank. We asked Hannah to tell us a little bit about herself and how she found success. Here’s what she shared:
Who are your role models or mentors and how have they helped you learn or grow?
Throughout my life I have been blessed to be surrounded by some amazing mentors and role models that have shaped me into who I am today. Some of the greatest role models in my life are my family. My parents and five siblings have always pushed me to do my absolute best in everything that I do and have encouraged me to try new things. They are an amazing support team. One of the things that I value most in a mentor is honesty, and with my family they will always give me their honest opinion, whether I like it or not. That kind of candor is incredibly important.
I was also blessed that my first job was working on a farm for two incredible role models who taught me the value of hard work. Phil and Susan, two of the hardest working people I know, not only taught me the value of hard work, but also to embrace and enjoy it. Phil also taught me the importance of sharing your knowledge with those around you. I remember many times working on their farm when Phil took the time to explain even the smallest things, such as how a pumpkin seed grows – the first two little leaves actually grow inside the seed and provide nutrients to the seedlings.
During my time at FCN Bank, I had an amazing mentor – Beth. She is one of the strongest, yet one of the humblest and kind people that I know. Beth taught me the importance of making time to help people. No matter how busy life is, she always makes time to talk with and help anyone around her and leads by example. She has been an amazing mentor to me over the years and has given me great advice numerous times.
How do you continue to develop your own skills?
I have always loved learning and believe that it is an important and life-long pursuit. No matter how much you know, there is always room to learn more. I am currently working on my master's degree in Real Estate development.
Someone told me early in my career that to grow, you need to continually push yourself to do things out of your comfort zone. Those things do not have to be anything huge, just small things to keep from getting too comfortable in one spot.
Goal setting has also always been especially important to me. I use self-reflection along the way to assess where I am in achieving those goals and adjusting where needed. I also strive to implement routines and practices into my daily routine that I think will allow me to grow and accomplish my goals.
What do you believe are the actions and / or characteristics that helped you get where you are today?
I think some of the characteristics that have brought me to where I am today are optimism, initiative, and competitiveness.
I have always had an incredibly positive outlook on everything that I do in life and can find something that I enjoy in any task at hand. That has helped me because it’s important to enjoy what you do.
In addition, I like to stay busy so I’m always looking for things to be done and new learning opportunities. At work, this means that I often find new ways to do things and take the initiative to make it happen.
Finally, I’ve always been extremely competitive. From playing soccer and showing livestock, to growing up with four older brothers, this characteristic has been a huge part of shaping me into who I am today. My competitive spirit has given me the perseverance to always push through to reach whatever goals that I set and to do so to the best of my ability.