Microsoft’s JaNay O. Wilborn’s insight on ‘rolodexing,’ a cool networking tool

Photo Credit: Averi Washington of MultiMedia

Rolling out got the chance to catch up with community development specialist of Microsoft at Lenox Square Mall of Atlanta, JaNay O. Wilborn, during Small Business Week and the induction of a new chapter of the National Black & Latino Council. We discussed everything from the importance of education, to Microsoft’s innovations and cultural influences.

How would you describe your leadership style?

Here at Microsoft, we are one, and work as a team. There is no “I” in team. We collaborate together and utilize everyone’s skill set. Mine happens to be “community.” I’m a collaborator of “community,” which is a big component of teamwork.

What is Microsoft’s mission statement?

”Our mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.” We consider our mission statement a commitment to our customers. We deliver on that commitment by striving to create technology that is accessible to everyone of every age.

How would you say having an advanced degree has helped you and your clients?

I have my master’s in public administration, and Microsoft is a very big proponent of education. They cultivate a really good foundation for you to receive your education. They make sure we have the tools that we need in order to get certifications, to get your bachelor’s [or] master’s. Half of our team [members] are college students. They are computer science, computer science information/technology and engineering majors.

Photo Credit: Averi Washington of MultiMedia

JaNay O. WIlborn (left)

Finish the sentences:

Teamwork is important because … as long as the job gets done, it doesn’t matter who gets the credit.”

The best way to recruit great talent is … to uphold a certain standard yourself, and you look for like-minded people who are the same page that you are, which creates a cohesive work environment.

Speaking a second language is important because … speaking a second language is definitely important and thats why we have some employees here who are bilingual, trilingual, and [for] some, their native language is something other than English because we want our customers to come in and feel comfortable about their experience at Microsoft. We want to show them that we are a diverse company. We take pride in having diverse employees because technology can be intimidating.

What social media platforms do you engage in the most?

We use our website as our biggest social medium. We direct our customers to: microsoftstores.com/atlanta, that is our website for the Microsoft at Lenox Square Mall of Atlanta. We have all our events, workshops, and promotions directly on that webpage.

Photo Credit: Averi Washington of MultiMedia

How would you describe your networking style?

My business development specialist and I had lives outside of this before we came to Microsoft and we do something called “rolodexing.” We go through people we’ve had relationships with, people we’ve done business with in the past and bring them in to our fold here at Microsoft. People do business with people, not necessarily an aspect. Microsoft is our family, so we usually bring back the people we have had relationships with before.

 What are two of your favorite quotes that motivate you?

“I train myself for triumph by knowing it is mine no matter what.” – Audre Lorde

“It must be borne in mind that the tragedy of life doesn’t lie in not reaching your goal. The tragedy lies in having no goal to reach.” – Benjamin Elijah Mays

Name two business or political leaders who inspire you.

  1. Ambassador Andrew Young, because of the way he has taken a city that I was born and raised in, and made it an international city. Without his leadership as a former US ambassador, A congressman, and former mayor of the city of Atlanta, a lot of the international relationships we have, we wouldn’t have without him.
  2. CEO of Microsoft Satya Nadella, has brought a new base to Microsoft. He has made Microsoft with his mission to make sure “Windows 10” is the most efficient, reliable and a productive resource for our customers. He’s done a really good job of bringing the new Windows 10 system to life for a lot of people. He’s the reason why we integrated “Windows 8” to “10.”
Joycelynn Okezie
Joycelynn Okezie

Between hardwork and success. Love, Live & Smile.



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