Life at Fionta

Featured Fíontan: Meet Katie Jones

Katie Jones

You’ve been with Fíonta for two years. How did you first hear about us?

I wasn’t exactly looking to change jobs, but Mark reached out to me on LinkedIn and was so charming in his email that I decided to go ahead and talk with him. Lol. And after I talked to a few people, it sounded like a really good fit. I’ve always been a better match for smaller companies (like 50 people or less). Fíonta has been everything I could have wanted. Great work and great people! (Editor’s note: And as it turns out, we’re officially Great!)

What was your previous work experience? How did you become interested in Salesforce?

I’d worked for or with associations for really my whole career. I started right out of college at a Native American education-focused nonprofit, and I was hooked. I dabbled in event planning for a while, and then moved into membership management, and got really interested in CRM/AMS systems from there. I realized all I needed to know about our members was stored right in that CRM. I worked with many of the different AMS systems in the association space, and at my last nonprofit, a co-worker told me about Salesforce. I looked into it and loved a lot of things about it, so I decided to apply for a consultant gig at a small partner organization very similar to Fíonta. I had to get my Admin certification in 3 months. It was VERY stressful, but I did it. And really, once I got into Salesforce, I was hooked. I’d spent years working for AMS vendors and telling clients that the custom field they needed would be $2,000 and would take six weeks to add. The idea that I can just add that to Salesforce in 2 minutes is STILL incredible to me. “The beauty of Salesforce is….” is a phrase I use ALL the time. 

You’ve been a remote employee since you started at Fíonta. What’s you’re A-1 best recommendation for someone new to work from home?

Pretend like you are in the office. Have a dedicated place for work (not your bed!) and have a set starting time, have a set ending time – and walk away at that time. If you don’t set clear boundaries, it’s easy to get sucked in and work all the time. Having a family at home helped me stay firm on boundaries, and of course, I’m really lucky that Fíonta has such great respect for work/life balance. That makes it a lot easier. 

You’ve worked with so many wonderful clients in your time here. Are there one or two who really stand out to you? Why?

Dry Cleaning and Laundry Institute has a special place in my heart because they were our first Fonteva implementation. They were super hands-on and eager to learn, which was a big part of the project’s success. I also was thrilled to do some work for PFLAG right after I started at Fíonta. They are an amazing group, and I was happy to help out in any way possible. 

Which Fíonta core value is the most meaningful to you?

Assume Positive Intent is my favorite. There is so little of that in the world today, and I love it that I’m reminded to do so here at work. I think it makes an enormous difference as we work together to try and solve client problems. I also feel like everyone at Fíonta takes it seriously, and so I get back what I give every day. 

What’s Katie Jones doing at Fíonta a year from now?

A year from now…I hope to have passed the 6th and the 8th grades! As a parent, this school year is a challenge. I’m spending quite a bit of time supporting my kids as they navigate virtual learning. Luckily, I have a bit of experience walking people through new processes using virtual tools – wink! At Fíonta, I hope to do the same – help customers make processes better and understand their systems better every day. 

Outside of delighting clients, what are some of your hobbies or favorite activities?

Running/walking. I’d always thought running would be a very exclusive sport. But every time I race, I see someone who inspires me, and I get support from very unlikely places. It’s been a really pleasant surprise. But all the races are virtual this year, which has really shown me how much I like the race day excitement. I am getting the distances done, but it’s just not the same. I miss it. 

Peaches or pears?

It’s a texture thing. Pears are too grainy for me. (Editor’s note: This is correct.)

Libraries or museums?

Libraries – I don’t have artistic talent myself, so I don’t probably appreciate art enough. But I LOVE a good book. Just finished My Dear Hamilton about Eliza Hamilton after watching Hamilton (like everyone else in the world) this summer. As a Native New Englander, I found the New York perspective on the Revolutionary War fascinating. Next, I’m going to read another book by the same authors (Stephanie Dray and Laura Kamoie) about Thomas Jefferson’s daughter to get the Virginia perspective. Again, very interesting to me as a transplanted Virginian for 26 years now. 

Pandas or whales?

Pandas. The implied cuddle factor is huge to me. Which is funny because I’m normally a realist, and there really isn’t ever the possibility in life of actually cuddling with a panda. 

Facebook or Instagram?

Facebook. Sigh… I’m old – lol. Although, if it weren’t for certain groups I’m in on Facebook, I’d have quit long ago. Everyone is shouting their opinion on everything everywhere, and it gets tiring. I probably would like Instagram better. I definitely do NOT get Twitter. It’s too fast-paced and too much retweeting for me.

Favorite nut butter?

Plain old peanut. Again, I’m old. Those newfangled nut butters just don’t seem necessary in the world 😉 We’ve tried sun butter, and it’s fine, but…