Shornda Cadore serves as Alstom’s Vice President of Procurement for the Americas. She is responsible for the strategic development and operational execution of key customer projects. Shornda and the team at Alstom are fully committed to reducing environmental, social and ethical risks at each link in its supply chain.
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John: Welcome to another edition of the impact podcast. I’m John Shegerian and I’m so excited and honored to have with us today, Shornda Cadore. Shornda is the vice president of procurement for America’s, for Alstom. Welcome Shornda to the impact podcast.
Shornda Cadore: Hi, John. Really excited to be with you today.
John: Hey listen, it’s great to have you. Before we get talking about all the important and impactful work you and your colleagues are doing at Alstom. Can you share a little bit about the Shornda Cadore story. Where you grew up, how you even got on this journey.
Shornda: No, absolutely. I’ll start off with, let’s say taking it a little back.
Shornda: For me that means I was, well, actually born in an island. I was born on the island of Grenada, my family migrated here. When I was seven years old, I migrated to New York City. I spent my entire childhood and obviously my teenage years growing up in New York City. I went to University, Upstate New York. When I say, I literally stayed within the state of New York, I did not leave the state of New York until I graduated from University. Once I graduated, my undergrad is actually computer science. So once I graduated, I started out. So I graduated from Binghamton University, with a bachelor’s in Computer Science. Started working at Sikorsky Aircraft. Sikorsky aircraft is the designer and manufacturer of the Black Hawk helicopter. So I would say, in terms of growing up, I started out on that journey. I spent 21 years in Aerospace, and I would say the last year or a little over a year now, on the rail[?] side of the business. But the cool thing I would say, in terms of, you all know the cliche; planes, trains and automobiles?
Shornda: I feel for me it’s, planes, trains and helicopters. Or maybe the reverse is, helicopters, planes and trains, and I’ll tell you the connectivity there. So when I started out, I actually was just a systems engineer on the Blackhawk helicopter. So, everything the cockpit, my team had responsibility for. All the navigation, communications. And I’ll tell you, that it was a sense of pride and even to this day. I would be remiss if I left that out, right? Because oftentimes, and I remember this when I was early in my career. I would often be, so what do you do, you know? Then I would always say, I’m an engineer on the Blackhawk helicopter. I would always get that wow factor, you know, the eyes would light up. Then it got to the point where, I started seeing it with that sense of pride. I’m an engineer on the Blackhawk helicopter, all right? So, it really became something that, obviously I was proud of. Proud of the product that I worked on then. About five years after being with Sikorsky, I stayed within the United Technologies family.
It was also after my second master’s degree. Then I went to our corporate office and I got my first exposure into operations. Started working at our different sites at the time in supply [inaudible], manufacturing and quality. So that was really, I would say the start for me, in terms of getting exposed to the operation side of the business. Get actually an opportunity to see Aerospace and Commercial, because I also worked at Carrier Air Conditioner which was part of United Technologies at that time. Then I transition to Pratt & Whitney, and I spent 13 years at Pratt & Whitney. Pratt & Whitney is the designer and manufacture with the state[?] design, and manufacture jet engines, commercial and military jet engines. So, you can see the helicopters to the jet engines connection there? So that was my journey. Spent 13 years working on the commercial military jet engines. From that standpoint you think of, the Airbus 320 or the Airbus 220.
Many people know the product and not realize the actual… I would say, they probably hear a lot about, maybe GE, but not so much of Pratt & Whitney. Then that also exposed me to Airbus. So I had the opportunity to work really closely with Airbus from a supplier development standpoint. So when I say, a breath of really core operations and again supply chain experience, really couldn’t beat it. It really kind of sharpened, you know, my diverse experience from the technical, and leveraging that to drive that operational excellence. So then. in the last year, I transitioned and I left the RTO, UTC is now RTX. I left the RTX family and I joined Alstom, and It’s just been an incredible journey since then. If you see the background behind me, from joining this organization, It’s personal. So I’m the vice president of, and you said it earlier, I’m the vice president of procurement.
Then our side, it’s inclusive of I would say, I cover the entire region. So I cover everything in terms of location from, North America, Central America and South America for all of our key businesses in the procurement side. Rolling[?] stock and components, services. Our digital and Integrated systems as well as indirect. So, you know, exciting times for us right now. But the big piece for me is being able to say, I’m truly, over the last 22 years. I’ve truly gotten the opportunity to be part of organizations that connect communities, organizations that connect people, and organizations that truly, you know. If from a transportation standpoint or innovators and leaders in that space. That’s why I say, you know for me, planes, trains and helicopters.
John: I love it. And you know, one thing I want to do Shornda, and I love your background, It’s fascinating. Talk a little bit about, you grew up, you move to New York City. You shared a little bit of; I grew up in Queens, you grew up in Brooklyn and you and I are both very used. You know, part of our lives, just normal life, is growing up with a wonderful train and subway system in New York. For our listeners and viewers around the world who don’t know what Alstom is. By the way, to find Shornda and all of our colleagues at Alstom, you could go to www.alstom. A-L-S-T-O-M.com. What is Alstom, and what do you produce, and and why is that so exciting?
Shornda: So many people don’t know Alstom as a name. But Alstom is, and I would say, we are the leader in what we call, Greener and smarter Mobility Worldwide. And I’ll tell you a little bit more about that. But maybe what I’ll do to help connect the dots for people a bit, is highlighting the products that they know, and that we design manufacture, and also that we service and maintain.
Shornda: So for instance, have you ever been to the Atlanta airport.
John: Yeah, 100%. Yes.
Shornda: If you’ve been to the Atlanta airport and if you’ve taken the plane train, you’ve been on an Alstom product. So that plane train that takes you between the terminals? Most people call it a monorail, we call it an automated people mover. That’s one of the products that we manufacture. That’s one of the products that we also maintain. If you’ve ever, like I said, if you’ve been to New York City and taken the subway. 4100, that’s a big number. We all know how diverse the subway lines or the subway system in New York City is. It’s the largest transit system in North America. You know, we design not all of them, but we also design, manufacture and also maintain the subway cars as well. So Alstom overall is, our portfolio ranges from, what we call high speed trains, metros, monorails, trams. We do customized services, infrastructure signaling and also digital mobility solutions for our customers. So you may not know, it’s not a household name, but people know the product. If you know of Amtrak? Amtrak Acela?
Shornda: The new Amtrak Acela, that’s also designed and also being manufactured by us as well. The really key thing to that, It’s all made in the United States.
Shornda: Right. Amtrak Acela, 95% of that train is by America. Which means the component [crosstalk] right here.
John: I love it.
Shornda: Right here local. So even something a little bit, bringing it closer to home. Amtrak Acela, right here in New York state, Upstate New York and Hornell New York.
John: Really? I never even knew [crosstalk] that.
John: Oh, we love this. My wife and I love the Acela. My son too, he’s been on it, loves it. And you were sharing a little bit, when we were off the air earlier. How personal is to your knowledge, your background, beautiful. And I was commenting on how nice and beautiful your background is, how indicative of your great brand it is. But you said, when you get on the train every morning, explain what you said to me about how personal this opportunity at Alstom is for you. Because when you get on the train every morning, explain what you see.
Shornda: Yeah. I think many times when we go to work, you know, it’s the element of, you know, I come to work and to get to work, I actually travel on one of the trains that we actually manufacture. So when I get on, and even with my with my daughter. When we get on, the first thing I often look for, is the nameplate. I always look for the nameplate to see, is this one of ours, you know? So I always look often times, depending on the direction that the car is going in, that top left hand corner, to see if it’s… and it’s a sense of pride, right?
John: Oh, yeah.
Shornda: Because there’s an element around, you know, I’m part of that. So everything that you really see on a train, my team, from a procurement standpoint, we buy, right? So, you know, that element is a sense of pride. Especially when you come to work and we understand the commitment to the quality, the commitment to delivery. Because it’s not only that we’re putting it out there in communities. I am also part of that community. I’m also part of you know, we say we’re connecting cities but, we’re part of it. So, you come in and it’s that commitment to making sure, like anything else, that we do a good job because we’re also part of that community.
John: I love that. You know, I want to get into exactly what you do in terms of, sustainable procurement and its benefits and challenges. But before we get into that Shornda. You mentioned at the top of the show, you mentioned it very casually. So I just thought, when you said you’re the vice president to procurement for America’s, I’m thinking you’re going to say, okay, you know, United States, maybe even just the Northeast. You said, actually it’s the United States. How far does your Vice Presidency go?
Shronda: Well, the span in terms of, and maybe I could tell you this in regards to Alstom, to kind of put it into scope.
Shornda: So, when I talk about the Alstom, leader in the way to greener and smarter mobility worldwide?
Shronda: We have 80,000 employees globally. That’s 175 different nationalities across 250 sites and that’s within 63 countries and we’re split by region. In the Americas, we have about let’s say, roughly about 14,000 employees within this region. And the Americas region full Alstom is what we would say, the largest geographical region within Alstom. The reason being is that, with our 14,000 employees we have a presence in 12 countries, North, Central, South America. We are actually the number one private rail operator in North America. Operating across 16 airports, 20 transit systems and that’s Canada, the United States, and Latin America.
John: So when we hear about the Inflation Reduction Act, and the whole shift from the linear to circular economy, and that fact that we’re decarbonizing the world right now. We’re all trying to get to either NetZero or some sort of version, get on that journey towards NetZero. I mean, you’re literally at the crossroads of Main Street and Main Street. Because trains are just one of the greatest ways to decarbonize any culture or any society, right?
Shornda: Absolutely! One of the things, and it’s actually coincidental that you and I are having this conversation about, sustainability and sustainable procurement this week. This week in particular at Alstom globally is, Corporate Social Responsibility Week. This is us putting a spotlight on, what we, as a company do from a CSR standpoint. I would say, even highlighting and spotlighting for our employees, how they could be part of the movement as well. You know, we know that businesses globally are accountable for sustainable solutions and our impact to the communities and the impact to the environment. You know, Alstom is leading the forefront in regards to that. So, I’ll give you a couple of examples, because our corporate social responsibility, I would say strategy, is anchored on four key pillars. These key pillars are enabling what we call, decarbonization of mobility. So that is, our facilities. You remember I was telling you, where at 63 countries, over 250 sites. Our goal is to power a 100% all of our sites, with renewable energy. For our new solutions, our goal there is to, ensuring that all of our new solutions are eco-designed. Then the other piece is, how do we ensure that we’re making our trains more efficient, right? The other pillar is, caring for our people. We can’t do what we do, without our people. Making sure that safety is a non-negotiable.
Safety stays as our ultimate priority and that is absolutely at the forefront of what we do. And ensuring that we are also implementing a culture of diversity and inclusion. You know, how do we drive more women into like, management engineering and professional roles within our businesses. The third pillar that we’re anchored on from our sustainable… I was at corporate responsibility and sustainability standpoint is, our impact on our society. You know, why were actually doing this, the socio-economical impact driven by it. We call that community actions, because we want to make sure that we have a presence, and we have a strong presence in the communities where our employees live and work. Last but not least is, the element of a responsible partner. Responsible partner for us is, you know almost 60% of our high-speed trains flows down to our suppliers, right? From that aspect, we need to also ensure that our suppliers are also compliant. They have a CSR strategy or program. They have an ethics and compliance program within their facilities as well. From a sustainable procurement standpoint, those elements are important, and for us is, safe working conditions. Are you environmentally friendly, are you socially responsible, do you have diversity and inclusion.
And for me, from a procurement standpoint. Those elements, as we are assessing who we’re going to partner with, who we’re going to collaborate with. Those elements are important, those elements are assessed. Those elements are, I would say, we have charters where we continuously monitor and also drive those engagements. Because we do our part, we need to make sure who we partner and collaborate with. They’re also doing their part as well. And you know what, if they don’t have the resources to implement these strategies and programs, we train. So we also have targets around training and investing with our suppliers to make sure that we help them along the lines of the journey. Because if we’re going to hold you accountable, we also want to make sure that we are fair and then we’re also balance in regards to that as well.
John: Shornda, does Alstom produce an annual CSR Report, with all this information in it?
Shornda: We do. When you say it in terms of, our targets in our goals?
John: I assume that report every year is published in April or May, and then it lives on your website from there on in.
John: That’s great. And by the way, for our listeners and viewers who’ve just joined us, we’ve got Shornda Cadore with us, she’s the vice president of procurement for the Americas. To find all the great work that Shornda is doing with her colleagues at Alstom, please go to www.alstom.com. Of course, you could also find their CSR report and all the other great information about Alstom. The important work and the impact they’re making in all the communities they work in, around the world. I’m on their website now, it’s full of great information. What I love in your background, beyond the train. I mean, you put your money where your mouth is Shornda. Top Employer North America 2023, Top Employer Global 2023. When you have 80,000 employees. that says a lot about Alstom and all the great and impactful work you’re doing.
Shornda: No, absolutely. When we talked about our social responsibility strategy, anchored on caring for people. You know, the awards that you see there, Global. We have it by country. I only highlighted North America because obviously that’s the region that we’re in. But it’s anchored on, we care about our people, we care about the HR practices that we have, the employee practices that we have. We’ve been winning now from the last, I would say, few years. The Top Employer award for exactly that, our commitment to bettering, I would say, the organization and the employee practices as well as have an outstanding HR practices. I said practices, I meant policies. Having outstanding HR policies and employee practices. That remain at our core and that’s part of, you know. Without our people, we can’t do what we do. So we remain committed to driving, and accelerating, and making sure that we commit to our people.
John: So Shornda, as vice president procurement for the Americas. Talk a little bit about sustainability and procurement. And the benefits that that means for, not only Alstom but the community at large, and the communities that you serve at large and then some of the challenges as well. What you face, in this very important role as vice president of procurement in the Americas.
Shornda: Yeah. So let me start it with, and I’ll go back in terms of, because I highlighted our overall corporate strategy in terms of the the CSR. But it does not deviate much from the sustainable. I would say, that’s a global vision. But when it comes to sustainable procurement, all we do is we reinforce those commitments with our suppliers, right? So, when I talk about the four kind of pillars? You have, acting as a responsible business partner. For us is, do we make sure that we screened all of our suppliers for ethics and compliance. That part is critical. To do business with us, that’s the key to entry. And we asked you to sign our charter committing that, when it comes to human rights, when it comes to the environment, that you’re doing the right things in that space. Then the element around creating a positive impact on society. You know for us is, a commitment to having over 500 suppliers trained by 2025.
That is the element of, how do we ensure that, within the communities that we live and work, that we are also invested in our custom, in our suppliers, in their development. To be able to respond to our customers requests, in regards to those elements. Making sure that we could master and have that agility, with our suppliers that are doing business with us and sharing that expertise. So that’s really core. The other piece, in terms of us reinforcing that commitment is, the element around here in front of people, right? 100% of our suppliers, we make sure that we monitor their performance, you know. Doing our due diligence in terms of management, health and safety as a priority. When you do local audits, to also make sure we are driving that. Because we want to make sure that we hold them accountable. Then the other piece is, the decarbonization. When you look at, we have targets of around 30% emission reduction by 2030. For us, that means we are looking at everything in terms of our raw material suppliers. How we’re making those selections. Identifying and collaborating with our Innovative and Engineering partners, to identify materials that would actually support and alternate materials that would be able to support those initiatives.
John: For Alstom, If I’m understanding this right, which I’m really loving. You create these very high standards for Alstom, this very huge multinational corporation. Those high standards then, you then create, in your role as vice president to procurement, a domino effect of greatness. Because, you’re demanding the same type of rigorous adherence to the most modern and best practices of safety, and of sustainable practices, and of Human Rights, and diversity to your suppliers as well.
Shornda: That is correct. Our customers hold us to a certain standard, that we have to honor and maintain. In order for us to ensure that we’re meeting those standards, we also need to ensure that our suppliers, because when you look at our make versus buy. We are over 70% buy versus make. So we have a critical dependence on our supply chain. We have a critical dependence on ensuring that they are reliable, their qualities align with what we need. They’re delivering at the pace and the rate that our customers need. All of those elements are connected and we don’t segregate them in any particular way, because it’s part of our overall management. Which is why the selection process upfront is core. So there’s no surprises when we try to enforce, when we try to drive the accountability because we make sure that we are transparent, around what the expectations are with our suppliers from the start of our engagement.
John: When you talk about a fairer, safer, greener supply chain, is that what you’re referring to then? How the rigorousness of how you manage that supply chain, and the standards that you hold your suppliers to?
Shornda: That’s correct. We make sure it’s mandatory for all and it’s a must. You know, I jokingly say, if you think of 007, it’s the license to operate, right? You know, in order to do business. This is this is the license to do business with us and [crosstalk] how to be part of the core.
John: That’s great though. That’s great. You lay it out and then you enforce it. But your clarity of how you lay it out, it makes sense because you’re not just talking the talk. You’re walk the walk yourself at Alstom and then you’re asking your suppliers to walk to similar walk.
Shornda: Yeah, that is correct.
John: That’s great. Talk a little bit about modern times that we live in now, you know. You transition from the avionics industry, I want to go back to that a little while as well. But, you moved over to the rails side [inaudible] trades. You did it during about the same time, you know. We’re now living in what we all as professionals call, the post covid era. Talk a little bit about, how has Covid impacted your industry, and your suppliers, and what does that mean to Alstom.
Shornda: Yeah. It’s a great point. There’s definitely been ups and downs in terms of market trends over the last three years. When I was on the aerospace side, I think it was pretty evident what the impact of the pandemic had. Obviously with reduction in air travel, so that was pretty clear. Coming and making the transition over to, you know, I think I came at a time when the market was, I would say, slowly transitioning back to a recovery period. In that space, you know for me, a lot of our suppliers, especially our member[?] I would say, if you look at the core of our business today. Many of our suppliers, especially if they’re localized in the United States, they really struggled with the supply chain disruptions. They really struggled heavily with the inflation. We saw higher costs in transportation, we see higher cost in different commodities. All of those really put a strain. And then, the other challenge that they all experience, and we felt a little bit of this pinch as well. Is also on the labor side, the human labor side. Having the readily accessible and readily trained labor.
Because what we do in some aspects is highly complex, highly engineered. So, often times there’s a unique skill set that we try to attract and we felt it on our suppliers. Many of them may not necessarily be large in the scale that we are. They really struggle with being able to absorb and reliably recover quickly to those really changing times. We feel a slight recovery now, but it is going to take some time for us to truly get back there. The inflation levels, I think that has started to come down a bit. We felt it but our suppliers, for sure felt it. And being making sure that we can then support the demand because, we had a down peak, and then up peak. When the up peak came, making sure that we were ready to be able to respond in that time frame. It was a bumpy transition.
John: Are trains now, in a world that is trying to decarbonize as fast as we can to protect this beautiful world and environment that we live. Are trains, is this a great time to be in the train industry? In the train manufacturing [crosstalk] industry?
Shornda: It is. It’s a good time, depending on the region.
Shornda: The reason that I say that is, it’s a good time, if you think really broadly about where we are about to go and what we need in terms of decarbonizing. Truly trying to find, to be driving to sustainable solutions. When you look within the region that we’re in, we are a few years behind that readiness. In terms of making sure we have the right infrastructure to truly take advantage of the trade. There are some cities that we know are more equipped than others and if we had the right infrastructure and we could accelerate the implementation of making sure the infrastructure is there, we would be able to leverage and take advantage of the electrification, the high-speed trains. You know right now the good thing is, conversations are being held. But it’s now our ability, to be able to truly ramp up and move with lightning speed for implementation. That to me, is really the core that would set us up for success.
John: Got it. You’ve been there about a year or so, Shornda. What accomplishments are you most proud of right now, that you and your team have been able to achieve in time at Alstom?
Shornda: No, that’s a really good question. You know for us this year, there’s been a number of transitions. Like anything else, it’s being able to stabilize. Because one of the things that happened within our business is, you know. Two years ago, Alstom acquired Bombardier Transportation, and many people are familiar with the Bombardier brand. So we acquired the Bombardier Rail Business. So the last two years, our team and my team as well, has been truly trying to integrate to businesses. Within that integration there are number of things, you got processed conversion, you got training. When we say process conversion, it’s the elements of, how do you ultimately take the best of, you got two really innovative and strong leaders in this space in Rail. How do you Leverage the best practices from both of those companies, to ensure that now we converge to that one process that is, the best of the best, right?
So, you know, my team has been really trying to accelerate that integration, that conversions. Then the other element is, how do we drive this stability? You know, because the teams have they’re different systems, different tools and new people, right? Trying to now, work together in that uniform way and for us is, really trying to create and connect in that manner. So we can truly then, because even with our suppliers as well. The suppliers is somewhere from the [inaudible] party Alstom, also converge into them. Making sure that, now we’re all aligned with that unified approach. Now we can move with agility, we can move with speed, we can move and drive the flow that our production centers need, to deliver to our customers commitment.
John: Shornda, how was your Aerospace background, which is vast and fascinating and fun. When you talked about the Black Hawk was of course, even I know about the Blackhawk and it’s one of the shining stars of America. How has that been able to inform you, to be even more effective in this really cool and important role that you have at Alstom?
Shornda: The last few months talking to different teams. That’s a really excellent question. Because oftentimes, especially when you cross industries. My airspace side coming over into rail. You know for me, having that technical foundation. Working in engineering and incorporating computer science. Also having the operational excellence and being able to execute. What we do often times here, they’re sourcing. there’s negotiations. But there’s also an operation, very process-oriented mindset, right? So everything you do, we drive that element of continuous Improvement. Even within our business processes, that is core to our success. Going back to the previous question that you asked. That’s the foundation and that’s the mindset that we’re also trying to drive. Is making sure that we are identifying root causes, we’re putting corrective actions in place and moving quickly.
So when you think about merging in. For me, trying to now merge my experience from Aerospace. My experience from engineering and operations into what we do and then spending the length of time in supply chain on the Aerospace side. For me, it’s universal. There are certain core elements, and I told the teams all the time. There are certain parts around the product that you will ultimately have to learn and get a little bit more familiar with. Because a full train, in terms of that end-to-end full product, is different, where it’s just a jet engine, right? The helicopters, you also had your full product, right? But on the jet engine, it’s just one kind of component that’s part of that full aircraft. Here, I would say, we’re similar to, in the Blackhawk side to a point because, you got a full aircraft and a full product. And here, we got a full train.
But in terms of what we do, in terms of the fundamentals associated with procurement and supply chain, it’s universal. If you’re brave[?] process-driven, there are elements between both sides of the industries that is transversal. That to me is where you could then kind of come in, be planted in what I do, and then come in learn the business, and then kind of leap frog forward. Because there are synergies, there are elements around. You think it’s probably from a functional standpoint, we’re irrespective of the industry. There are definitely some connections that I’ve been able to leverage.
John: That’s awesome. Shornda, you’ve seen a lot in your career and worked on a lot of very, very cool brands and projects. Now you’re working in another cool one at a great time as were decarbonizing our society and our world. What’s next for Alstom that you’re excited about? What gets you and your colleagues out of bed in the morning, and projects and initiatives that you’re allowed to talk about on the air with us today at Impact.
Shornda: Yeah. I would say, the one thing that, not one thing. But there are number of things that, I won’t say keep me up but keeps me in a energized.
Shornda: That is growth in the market. I talked a little bit about the Amtrak Acela and right now, the upgrade. Because within the United States, with the infrastructure bill and the funding the Biden administration had flowed down. That has truly allowed for, I would say, put in some focus around transitioning and upgrading in the rail industry within the United States, right? So for us, there are transit customers and really exploring. Is this an opportunity for us to either, upgrade the existing fleet? Add a new fleet, add some new cars. There’s new technology that’s available when they talked about any new solutions for us will be 100% designed. So there’s definitely technology, there’s Innovation.
Many of the transits customers and airports who want to take over, they have an aging fleet and this is the time. We just need to make sure, from a procurement and supply chain standpoint, that we are ready. That readiness comes in components that we make, their components that we buy and making sure, once again, linking it right back to our suppliers. Making sure they’re ready. Making sure that we’ve developed and we’ve invested in their development, so they can stand with us and deliver quality parts on time and at cost, right? So, when I think about what’s ahead. It’s our readiness to be able to ensure, that we can support our commitment to our customer when that time comes, because that time is coming.
John: Shornda, you have had a very, very successful career as careers go and it’s only even going further. You’re still very young, relatively speaking. Share a little bit about. You know, we have a lot of listeners and viewers around the world who are graduating high school, who are graduating college and maybe even grad school. And they see you breaking through in this very, very, what was an old Guy School industrialized Corporation and you’ve broken through all the barriers. What are some advice you’d give to your 18 year old self? What are some advice you’d give to your 22 year old self? For our young listeners out there, who want to be the next Shornda Cadore. Who want to be, a VP of procurement, or VP of sustainability, or supply chain. And really not only make a nice living for themselves, but also make a difference in this world, like you are.
Shornda: So, one of the things that is a passion of mines is, giving back. I stand on a quote that says, “Lift as you climb.”. For me that is really powerful because let’s say, for many of us, we didn’t get here by chance. Lifting as I climb, is making sure I give back and I also coach, and develop, and help others to get to where I am. Because many times, if I knew then what I know now. I wouldn’t say I’d probably would have been on a different path, but at least there’s certain decisions that I would have considered differently, right? You know, good or bad. It’s the element around, get comfortable with being the only one. Whether you are a woman in the space, whether you are a black woman in this space. There times where you are the only one. You are the only one at the table, you’re the one that have to speak up. Just being able to get comfortable and okay with that, by making sure that you also help and pave a way for others to join you at a table. I always say there’s room because many times there’s a small number of us.
There’s definitely room for others and it’s on us to make sure. It’s one of my my commitments, one of the things I’m passionate about, is making sure that I take the time to also coach and develop and help others. Give them, whether it’s real time feedback. But then, really just kind of sharing my journey, sharing my story, sharing how I got here and then helping them and making sure I’m accessible to them whenever. That element of being comfortable of being the only one, is important. But it’s the same way of just saying, don’t be afraid to just take chances, don’t be afraid to trek through the unknown, don’t be afraid to chase a goal after the messy assignments. Because oftentimes the messy assignments are the ones that give you that exposure, they give you the visibility, they give you the learning. Don’t get comfortable. It’s the element of continually challenge and stretch yourself, right? That’s how we grow, that’s how we learn and you’ll make mistakes. I always say, you know what, if we were all supposed to be perfect, then I don’t think this world will definitely be a different place. You’re supposed to make mistakes and when you do, shake it off, dust your shoulders off and keep on moving. That’s the resilience.
John: Love it.
Shornda: That’s the resilience that ultimately drive results.
John: I love it and that’s such wonderful and heart spoken advice and true advice. I’m 61, and everything you just said rings true in my life. In my friend’s life that have broken through. I had an old friend and in the horse racing industry, about making mistakes he always said, “Hey Johnny, don’t worry about it. If you’re breaking plates that means you’re in the kitchen, and you want to be in the kitchen man.”. So he says, “That’s good news. So don’t worry about making mistakes, that’s all part of the process.”, Let yourself off the hook on that stuff, because that means you really trying hard and I love it. What a great mindset. In terms of coaching, you’ve inspired me. You’ve impressed me today.
I’m sure all of our listeners around the world have been similarly impressed and inspired by you. Shornda, thank you so much for spending time with us. As we know, sustainability and impact and all the important work you’re doing with your colleagues at Alstom. There’s no finish line, it’s a journey. So, you’re always welcome back on the Impact Podcast to continue to share Alstom journey, your journey and all the success that you’re making. For our listeners and viewers who want to find Shornda and her colleagues, and all the important work they are doing in sustainability, in Impact and CSR. Please go to www.alstom, A-L-S-T-O-M.com. When you get on your train somewhere, look up in the corner. See if it’s an Alstom train. You’ll feel proud that you listened to this podcast. You’ll feel proud that a lot of those trains are made right in New York and Upstate New York. Shornda Cadore, thank you so much for your time today. Thank you for inspiring all of us and thank you mostly, for making the world a better place.
Shornda: Thank you for having me.
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