Justin M. R. Kole
I was born/grew up in: Mississauga, Ontario
I now live in: Burlington, Ontario
I completed my training/education at: I have a Bachelor of Business Administration from Walsh University, Ohio, USA. I have taken training offered by Tesla Motors.
What I do at work
My daily activities at Tesla Motors vary depending on the day and the amount of work that needs to get done. My role is very "flexible". Being able to adapt to changes / problems and know how to do many different jobs is key.
I have a small team, but I work with many teams across the province and country. I sometimes work with teams in the USA as well. I help customers complete their order profiles. This is the basic information needed to register their new car and how they will be paying for it. I also work with scheduling systems for vehicle arrival, resolving issues with cars, and scheduling customer appointments.
Another role that I perform is weekly education sessions for new owners. These sessions introduce them to the car's features and technology. These sessions used to be in person, but have now moved to virtual video chats (sometimes up to 100 customers at a time!) Electric cars are quite different from old gas cars and some people feel a bit overwhelmed. , I break down the technology in ways they can understand. I also help them get into new habits that will allow them to fully utilize their new cars.
I work closely with our technicians and engineers In Canada and from California. While I am not an engineer by trade, I have learned so much about the technology by spending time with these teams. This allows me to be a resource for our non-engineering teams. I am a bridge between customer-focused teams and the real engineers. Knowing some basic principles of mechanics and electricity has really helped me stand out and grow in this very tech focused company.
My career path is
It took some time at school to see what I was really good at. I must have changed what my "dream job" would be at least 10 times. In elementary school, I hated giving speeches and talking in front of people. But once I realized that when you talk about something you love, people notice that, and they really listen. Thanks to a few teachers in both elementary school and high school, I found that science and technology was amazing. They helped me realize that even if you sometimes fail, that failure can help spark something new, a new idea, a new process.
When I was in high school, Tesla didn't even exist as a company. I had no idea that I would end up working for what is now one of the largest technology companies in the world. I completed a Bachelor of Business Administration. This degree prepares you for a variety of roles in world of business. My areas were business management, marketing and related support services.
When I first started looking for work while I was in University, I didn't focus on what I would be doing as a job. I looked for a company that I thought was making a difference and was doing something that I wanted to be a part of. Once you are in a company, there are many opportunities to change jobs and expand your knowledge. Look around, read more than the just the first page of a website on companies that interest you. You might find out something even more interesting than the job you are applying for or doing. For example, when I started working at Tesla, I took advantage of in-house training. I built up my skills and took on more responsibility. This has led me to where I am today.
I am motivated by
Knowing that I am helping take polluting gas cars off the road, and helping the planet's environment, is a big factor. Tesla's mission, and actual determination to follow it, is what makes me excited to work there. To see that I am helping change people's minds and ideas about green technology is very rewarding. I also love the fact that I can use my public speaking skills and "presenter skills" to reach wide audiences.
How I affect peoples’ lives
Tesla is a company that is trying to change the basic automotive world into something that is more future-focused and more environmentally friendly. By working here I am helping the world become a cleaner, greener place. I love working with these high tech cars and seeing people's reactions to what these cars can do.
Outside of work I
I love road trips. Playing music and seeing the scenery in my own space, and picking my own destination. Getting out in nature in general really helps you appreciate technology even more. I love to camp and go kayaking as well. Being part of my Schools' tennis teams also was a great way to meet new people. I also got to explore my "handyman side" by helping with Habitat for Humanity and build houses when I was in University.
My advice to others
Read up on topics that interest you. Try things that interest you. Sometimes you might find skills that you had no idea you knew you had. Sometimes you might find out you don't like something as well as you thought. For example, before I started working for Tesla, I wrote a car review blog just for fun. I did this for about two years. I wasn’t doing it for any reason other than I liked talking about cars. As it turned out, I’m using the skills I developed then in my current job. Writing the blog helped me figure out how to take the technical specs and features and put it in a form that everyone can understand. That’s part of what I do in my job today!
- Home Economics
- Business & Economics
- Computer Science
- Always wanted to be outside
- Organized activities for my friends
- Played on a sports team
- Enjoyed working with my hands
- Wanted to be in charge
- Liked being given free range to explore my ideas
- Wasn't sure what I wanted to do
- Always threw the best parties
- Liked to take things apart to see how they worked
- Liked to design or build things
- Learned best “by doing”