Blog Published: June 2023
Anna is one of our Residential Sales and Design Specialists, but as someone who embodies the culture and excitement of Namaste Solar, that isn’t her only role within the company. After being around for over 6 years, she is very involved; whether it is with the Women of Namaste Solar employee resource group, helping coordinate the annual ski day, or providing support as one of our many co-owners. Anna is always excited about our people and our company, and we love her for it!
Why were you first interested in working here?
I previously worked at another Amicus Solar Cooperative company (Revision Energy), and when I told my boss there that I was moving to Colorado he said that if he got a reference call from anyone other than Namaste Solar, he would tell them that I was the worst employee ever because he knew that Namaste Solar was the place for me. Plus, the co-ownership and B Corp aspects were also positive for me.
What motivates you to wake up and go to work?
I think all of the very obvious reasons like saving the world, working in the solar industry, doing good. But the other really honest reason for myself is that I like to do good work and make the people around me proud. I want to do well for myself, my manager, and the team. I take great pride in doing well for the company to make sure Namaste Solar meets its goals and does well as a whole because I love the people here so much and I want to make them proud.
What is something about your job that most people don’t know about?
We’re not just salespeople; we are also designers. A lot of solar companies have a design team that does all of the 3D modeling and production estimates and then they have a sales team that takes what the design team creates and goes and sells it. I really like that our team builds the models and does a lot of math in our roles as opposed to just being a cheesy salesperson.
What’s been one of your proudest moments working here?
Every single time I sit in on an interview for someone and that person says how long they’ve wanted to work for Namaste Solar and how different it is I just get really proud.
But recently, I had a moment where I randomly met a woman who had been in the state senate for seven years, and she told me she had been a part of getting a lot of renewable energy agenda bills through. When I mentioned Namaste Solar, she said she knew us and that we had been integral in her time at the senate. Any time I hear that we have been integral in moving renewables forward I am really proud of that.
What’s the most unique part about working at Namaste Solar?
Definitely the people. I always say I get to work with a bunch of extremely competent and driven weirdos and that is very unique.
How has Namaste Solar helped you develop your skills and career?
Namaste Solar has been my entire career basically. I started in solar totally randomly and when I moved to Colorado and started working for Namaste Solar, it just provided a path for me to have a career. I think that I am a very natural salesperson because I love talking to people and helping people. The fact that Namaste Solar had that career path available and surrounded it with such robust support helped created my path.
What advice would you give to recent new hires?
It’s okay to work at Namaste Solar just as a job. I think if you want to get the most out of this company, getting really involved in clubs and task forces and co-ownership is really where the Namaste Solar culture shines. That is where you get the most benefit from the unique structure.
Where are you from? Why did you move to CO?
I grew up in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, which is probably the most different place compared to Colorado. The mountains were calling plus the big open spaces and the ability to just disappear and have no one know where you are is very appealing to me and Colorado offers that.
What do you like to do when you’re not at work?
Rafting, skiing, mountain biking, climbing, but also gardening and reading and sleeping without a roof over my head as much as possible.
What is something most people don’t know about you?
There’s two that come to mind – I was born on Kauai, Hawaii and my middle name is Kehaulani. And I can list all fifty states in alphabetical order in under 15 seconds.
If you could pick one superpower, what would it be?
To fly, no question. I just want to be able to go to remote places at the drop of a hat.
One of our core values is “Come as You Are” and part of that is working to build a culture where people feel able to be their full selves at work. How have you experienced this at Namaste Solar?
My biggest gratitude for “Come as You Are” is that I don’t feel a corporate divide between layers of management and myself. I feel that I am very good friends with my managers – I’m not working for them, I’m working with them. So, we are both able to come as we are and it develops this mutual understanding that we are all human beings and fosters a culture of friendship versus corporate structure. I’ve also never had to buy really formal work clothes and that’s a way I get to express myself at Namaste Solar – to not have to stuff myself into corporate clothing.
What has your experience been with our company culture?
The cheesy answer is that Namaste Solar is incredibly different from every other company out there. We walk our walk and talk our talk. We really are trying to do the best for our customers.
The more serious answer, I do think that some people come to Namaste Solar with this vision that it’s like an Eden of a company where everyone gets their way all the time and that is not the case either. We are still a company that is working toward financial goals and sometimes you don’t always get your way here; that’s part of our democratic structure. I like the balance of those things at Namaste Solar.