Flight Crew Series: Sheridenn White Leads Support Teams in Crisis
Welcome to The Flight Crew Series where we sit down with our team members around the world to get to know them better. We talk about the careers that led them to TripActions, what their roles look like on a daily basis, why they believe in their teams, and even their favorite travel memory. The participants were selected by their peers for the incredible work, team spirit, and how they embody TripActions values. Read more from the series here.
This week we sat down with Sheridenn White, a Customer Support Manager based in Dallas, Texas. Sheridenn is a TripActions veteran with nearly two years at the company. As one of the first support agents to join the Dallas team -- before there was even an office -- Sheridenn has played a foundational role in building and scaling our support teams. When a crisis situation arose last month, Sheridenn stepped up to the plate and showed his team how to elegantly handle stress, serve business travelers, and fulfill the TripActions promise.
“My number one goal is to make sure that my team succeeds. One of the values that TripActions has is, ‘It’s about the users, all of them.’ I've learned through the last two years at TripActions that we have both internal customers and external customers. I want my team to service our external customers every single day with all of their might, all of their heart, and I want to take care of our internal customers, too," says Sheridenn.
"It doesn't matter if you're on the support team or customer success or sales or marketing, you're still an internal customer of mine because we all have the same goal here. It's about the users in all of them."
“I'm a really sports-minded person so I put my heart into everything. To me, this is a sport. I want our team to be the best, to give the best service. I tell my team every day that it doesn't matter if the traveler is a C-level executive or a janitor. I don't care about that. You're going to give them the same service and we're going to raise the bar," he explains.
A Team Effort
Sheridenn is quick to take the spotlight off himself and eager to talk about the great work that his team is doing day in and out.
“I was in the trenches last week. This is hard work,” he said. “One of my lessons is to bring it every single day and do it with spirit. Do it with pride day in, day out.”
Sheridenn moved from a support agent to team lead to a manager last month when he was asked to step up and lead a team of 13 people through the company’s busiest month ever.
“The support agent is taking the chats and picking up the phones. A lead sits side by side with agents sharing tips and tricks, answering questions, showing how to deescalate a client and really be an ally. A lead’s tips really resonate with agents, because they know that the lead was in their position in the past. They know the obstacles that they go through and the pain points. It’s a foundational piece of growing into the role,” he explains.
When Sheridenn joined TripActions, he was one of the first five people to move into the Dallas office. Today there are 205 TripActioners based in Dallas.
“Everyone is so friendly and willing to go to bat for the next person. I’ve never been around a company like this before. It’s so supportive and uplifting, you’re able to start conversations with other teams, and build those foundations because everyone’s all in. It sounds cliche to say that ‘we’re one big family,’ but that’s really what it’s like here. It is a very trusting environment. Everyone knows what they need to do and they step up to get the job done,” he says.
When Sheridenn first learned about TripActions, it sounded too good to be true. Now, thinking back on two years, he is amazed at how much he’s grown and accomplished. He attended GBTA in Chicago, was blown away by TripActions Connections in Palo Alto, and watched his local team in Dallas grow again and again.
“I’ve had real life-changing experiences, whether it's through TripActions and the work we do and how we serve our clients or the personal experiences that TripActions was able to provide for me. That’s one of the reasons that I bring it every single day. This company has changed my life so much so of course I’m going to give it all I’ve got,” explains Sheridenn.
A Fast Pace
The support team, including Sheridenn, truly stepped up and gave it all they had last month when changing travel restrictions flooded the TripActions support channels. The team was able to respond quickly and get all business travelers home safely and efficiently.
“Corporate travel moves so fast that you have to hit the ground running every day. Everything is always changing. When coronavirus hit, we received updated waivers every day. What you were doing yesterday doesn’t work the next day so you have to stay on top of your game,” explained Sheridenn.
“We want to give the best support and advice possible. We want to be able to maneuver situations in the best way possible, because our number one goal is to get you from point A to B, seamlessly and painlessly.”
Culture is an integral part of what makes TripActions and allows us to work together to innovate quickly. To learn about the new features we’re building to support travel managers, finance leaders, and HR professionals during this unprecedented time, see here.