This month at SSM Direct we wanted to take the time and highlight an individual who has built our organization from its first day forward; an individual who is a true definition of servant leadership.
Meet Dana Wahdan, Assistant Manager at SSM Direct and total powerhouse within our company’s Management Program. An Israeli native, Dana spent her entire childhood and adult years in her home country with her nose in a book and a passion for school! A scholar, Dana choose to pursue higher education in finance, receiving her Bachelors of Business Administration from Birzeit University. A philanthropist, Dana also spent her teen and collegiate years raising awareness and funds for female educational rights in impoverished parts of Israel.
Moving from Israel to Denver 4 years ago after years of working in the banking industry, Dana knew that she had to step out of her comfort zone and find a new career opportunity. Though she loved the financial aspects of her job, the lack of growth and advancement in troubled her. She sought a company where promotions were based on merit and performance, not on tenure. She soon found that within the marketing & sales industry.
Starting with our client broker out in Denver, Dana, though confident in her work ethic, lacked confidence speaking face-to-face with new customers. Characterizing herself as shy and introverted, accepting a position in retail based marketing & sales was totally new for her. Luckily, being the student she was, Dana applied herself to her craft and soon became the top marketing/sales representative for DirecTv (former client) month after month. Fun fact: our client was so thrilled with Dana’s performance they had cut outs made of her that were featured at their headquarters!
When an opportunity presented itself to move with CEO, PJ, cross country to Philadelphia and represent a new client, Dana jumped at the opportunity to continue furthering her leadership experience. In her most memorable experience with SSM Direct, Dana remembers the drive from Denver to Philly as a defining moment in her life. When we asked her whether she would ever return back to the mountains, she stated that she’s a Northeastern girl now and loves everything about Philly, from the people to the food!
For the last 2 years, Dana has helped in the development of SSM Direct, aiding in interviewing, onboarding, training, team management and more. Highly respected among her peers, Dana always says she’s proof that as long as you study and work hard you can accomplish anything you set your mind to. Her personal mission is to have an impact on every single person that steps foot within SSM Direct’s doors whether for an hour or for a year.
In her spare time, Dana loves watching Disney princess movies (tell her she looks like Jasmine and she’ll love you!), finding new restaurants around Philly, cooking lasagna, relaxing at the gun range, and hanging out with coworkers. In the future, she looks to help SSM Direct and clients expand outside of Philadelphia while finding the freedom of time and finances to get back into fundraising for young Israeli women who seek education.
She extends deep gratitude to her roommate and close friend Danielle for being a positive influence in her life and reminding her every day to bet on herself and bring everything she has to the table. Dana’s humility and student mentality are the reason her professional development is continuous, and we are confident she will be a driving force in SSM Direct’s national expansion. Our pride in her is immense and we hope this blog extends our appreciation. Keep up the amazing work, Dana!