It takes patience, tenacity, and strong organization skills to manage a c-store. Our account coordinator, Untonisha Harper, knows all about it. Prior to Let’s Pave, she worked for several years in that challenging and fast-paced industry. Now she leverages her insider knowledge to help our customers better manage their retail pavement.
- When you managed a c-store, you had to fight to get potholes filled and pavement resurfaced. What advice would you give to store managers struggling with the same issues you faced?
I would tell them not to wait until it is too late. Store managers are routinely outside to inspect the property, empty trash cans, or to assist a customer. When this occurs, use the time to assess your pavement as well. Pay attention to defects or damage and promptly alert maintenance or district managers before customers start complaining to you. If left untreated, small issues can quickly develop into trip hazards, potholes, and other liabilities. Pavement in this condition can lead to personal injury or vehicle damage (i.e. popping a tire). Simply put–being proactive does more than maintain your pavement; it upholds your brand image and reputation!
- This career, like your previous one, requires quick thinking and speedy execution. What draws you to a high-performance workplace?
I love the challenge associated with a high-performance workplace. I have gained skills that I never would have been able to develop in a less-demanding career. In a workplace I look for roles where I can be challenged, where I can grow, and learn. Always trying to reach the next level is important to me. In my previous career I worked my way up from a part-time cashier to a Store Manager. In this career, who knows where my path may lead as the opportunities for growth are endless.
- What have you learned about paving that you didn’t know previously?
A lot! Before Let’s Pave I could identify potholes or surface damage. But now I’m constantly analyzing parking lots—I notice the crack at the seam, the oil stains and resulting damage, as well as areas that have severe alligator cracking. It amazes me how many sites overlook damage on the parking lot, especially potholes.
- Speaking of learning, you’re currently pursuing another degree. How is continuing education crucial to your success?
To me, success isn’t about how much money you make or the things you obtain; rather, it is doing something you enjoy day in and day out and that you are proud of. Continuing my education gave me the boost in confidence I needed to begin working toward real success. I believe without a degree I would have continued to settle for what was enough, as opposed to striving for more.
- What is the best thing that happened to you this week?
Mother’s Day! I received some nice gifts from my kids and family. My mom celebrated with us, too, and she told me how proud she is of me; that was definitely the highlight of my day!
- Who inspires you and why?
I am not inspired by any person in particular; instead, I am inspired by everything. Anything can be used as motivation, good or bad. I can see something and decide to use it to my advantage or see something else and know that it doesn’t align with my goals and my purpose, so I use that as motivation to do the opposite.
- How would your kids describe you?
My daughter would probably say I’m her best friend. My son, on the other hand…that’s a whole different story. As much as I hope he would say “I’m the best mom ever” like he used to, I know that depends on whether he still has access to his game, his phone, and a Fortnite card. I figured I’d just ask him. He told me I was “funny, nice, and mean.” I think that’s a pretty accurate description of me coming from an 8-year-old.
- What are you looking forward to?
Vacationing this summer with my kids and with my close friends.