Spotlight – Andrea Juliano, CVS Caremark
University Relations and Program Manager, CVS Caremark
Andrea received her Bachelors of Arts in English Writing with a minor in Womens Studies at Western Connecticut State University and a Masters of College Student Development and Counseling from Northeastern University. She has been with CVS Caremark for 9 years and in her current role for 1 year.
What was your career path (previous roles) to get your current role? Previously, I held the role of Talent Acquisition Manager and served as a key partner for overall hiring practices, processes, and systems for the retail stores and distribution centers at CVS Caremark. Prior to joining CVS Caremark, I held various positions in career services and cooperative education at several universities in the Boston area.
What was your first job? My first job in high school was actually working for a small family owned drug store in my hometown. The drug store later became a CVS/pharmacy. Little did I know my career path would lead me back to the same company many years later.
Why did you choose this career? Initially I was attracted to a career in Higher Education as I was heavily involved on campus as an Undergraduate in Student Services, Residential Life, and on campus organizations. After receiving my graduate degree and while working in Career Services, I not only enjoyed working with students, but was also attracted to assisting employers with building intern programs. It was an easy and logical transition for me to make from Higher Education to the employer side of University Relations and Human Resources.
What is the skill that is most important in your current role? Flexibility is an important skill to have in any role. In a large, dynamic organization priorities can shift rapidly. In order to keep up and continue to be successful, individuals need to be able to embrace change as well. Successful organizations (and successful individuals) reinvent themselves many times over.
How did you develop this skill and how do you fine-tune it regularly? Being flexible isn’t a skill one can develop and check off a list. It is something that must be revisited often and worked on. For example, no one likes to be told that a project they have put effort into is not moving forward. But understanding the reason why (perhaps there is a bigger, better project taking its place) and being able to readjust your mindset is important and takes practice.
Did you have a mentor? I have had several great mentors who have helped me develop and reach some of my career goals. It is necessary to have many mentors throughout your career and to continue to develop new relationships in each phase of your career.
What is your biggest career accomplishment? I don’t like to cite a single accomplishment, as there have been many great steps and opportunities. Also, I think not citing a single accomplishment keeps me focused on reaching other future goals. Always striving to reach the next goal keeps me motivated and moving forward. It also ensures there is always a next goal.
What is your advice to students looking for their first job? Consider how the culture, mission, and longer term career development opportunities of a company align to you personally. Financial and other benefits are important too, however, first time job seekers often overlook the concept that they should be able to relate to the company’s purpose on a deeper level. Having a strong connection will influence how happy you are on a day-to-day basis going to work!
What is your advice to young professionals in the field who aspire to your current role? Human Resources is often a field that finds you, not one that you seek out. I have found this to be a true statement for many colleagues in this field. It is a broad umbrella with many subcategories requiring a diverse skill set. Leaders from many different fields of expertise can find alignment within Human Resources. Students often don’t realize that aspects of Communication, Finance, Management, Marketing, and Information Technology all apply to HR. Human Resources is a part of all organizations and provides opportunity to gain exposure to many different segments of a business.
What was the best career advice you have ever received? The best piece of advice I ever received came from a mentor and it was to always think about how others perceive you. Sometimes you may feel you are presenting one image of yourself when really the perception others take away is something completely different. It is important to make sure these two things align!