Silvia Vazquez Perez – Senior Recruiter in Madrid

Silvia Vazquez Perez – Senior Recruiter in Madrid

SILVIA VAZQUEZ PEREZ

Senior Recruiter
Madrid, Spain
Joined: 2017

What’s your favorite conference room?

Honesty is the best policy when it comes to interviewing for a job with Groupon Spain, according to Senior Recruiter Silvia.

What are some best practices for candidates to keep in mind while they’re applying or interviewing here?

I think the most important thing is to be honest. I really love when someone is successful at Groupon. The best way to find where you really belong is to let us see who you really are.

What inspires you?

This is a great question! I think anyone who betters themselves is someone to look up to. I am really inspired by women who have had success in their lives even when the time wasn’t the best for it.

What was your first impression of Groupon?

I thought it was a cool company. For me, it’s very important the work atmosphere and the culture of a company and I can say Groupon fits perfect with my values.

The first thing I noticed was friends, not only colleagues, but people who helped each other.

What’s your favorite local business?

There’s a bar downtown called La Tita Rivera, it has “Estrella Galicia 1906” beer (my favourite one) and the food is awesome, too. Additionally, it has a terrace on the inside and it’s really lovely, with a lot of little lights, some trees, etc.Great place!

What 2-3 questions do you get asked over and over by candidates?

What’s it like to work at Groupon? And once I tell them about working here, they always ask me, is this real? And of course, how does it work?

How does your work impact Groupon’s mission of building the daily habit in local commerce?

I think our work is key for any company. In Groupon, the Talent Acquisition department is very important; we work all together as a team even though we are geographically separated. If we weren’t great at what we do, we wouldn’t have such an amazing team in every country (of course the Spanish one is the best! 😛 ) And when you have an amazing team you can do impossible things and help build the daily habit in local commerce.

There are a lot of amazing Groupon stories. What’s your biggest accomplishment?

I would say being able to go to so many job fairs so far. We managed to be in Madrid (three times), in Valencia, in Barcelona, and in Granada. I feel like a rock group on tour!

Anything a candidate should know about how to work with you or what to expect from the recruiting process?

I love when they feel comfortable in interviews. I really want to get to know them to see if they fit with Groupon, so I always try them to feel at home. So they can expect a big smile and a good conversation. They should also as as many questions as I ask them! My idea of an interview is that the first day at work anything would be a surprise.

Tell us about your team! How do you work together as recruiters? What’s unique about you as a team?

My team is incredible. I have never worked with such talented people. We are all separated in different countries and some of us have never met each other but we are really close. We know we can count on each other and we are always happy to help our colleagues. Mostly we recruit for the same positions and we find the same difficulties so who better than us to resolve them. I can guarantee you will enjoy an interview with any of us!

What’s something that candidates are surprised to learn about your hiring team? Or Groupon in general?

I think Groupon’s culture is unique. The part candidates like the most is they can work on several categories (Food and Drink, Health and Beauty, Leisure, Services) and they don’t have to be specialized in only one vertical. This allows them to learn a lot of things. And, for sure, our play zone with the ping-pong, darts, PlayStation, etc.

Want to work with me?

 

Why should a candidate join Groupon Sales? What will they get out of it? What will Groupon provide them?

They have the chance of helping local businesses become with e-commerce and market on the internet without any risk. I think the best thing about Groupon is that you can adapt the sale to the partner’s need, which is great…we work with big companies like Marco Aldany or Cinesa and with new local business, who else can do that?

What’s your favorite Groupon memory?

It’s too hard to pick only one memory, I have a full list of great moments here at Groupon. Every day has a detail to remember but if I had to choose only one, probably would be our Volunteer-a-thon last year. We spent the day in the city with children who had oncological diseases. It was super exciting to be with them and see them laughing. Awesome!

What’s the most random thing you’ve witnessed at the office?

The most random thing was the first time I saw someone taking a nap in the office! Then you get used to seeing it 🙂 I think it’s great having the possibility of playing Fifa, taking a nap, beating someone at Ping-Pong or just talking during lunch time.

What’s the #1 thing you wish all candidates did?

I would love them to be relaxed from the beginning and show their passion, especially if their passion is Groupon!

If you could do another job for just one day, what would it be and why?

I used to love being an actress. I did theatre for a few years because I loved the opportunity to be any person I want in any moment. I always say to myself I will do it again!

Tell us something that might surprise us about you.

I love crafts! I paint jackets, I do cross stitch and I take advantage of improving anything I can to make them unique!

Raphaël Buton – Senior Recruiter in Paris

Raphaël Buton – Senior Recruiter in Paris

RAPHAËL BUTON

Senior Recruiter
Paris, France
Joined: 2017

Give us a glimpse of the view from the Paris office!

What group do you recruit for?

Sales

What are some best practices for candidates to keep in mind while they’re applying to or interviewing at Groupon?

Stay true to who you are, be concise, and don’t forget to use numbers to back up your examples!

What should a candidate know about how to work with you during the recruiting process?

I guess the main points would be transparency and honesty. I believe it’s important to know where do you stand in a recruitment process and what the next step(s) would be. I also try to always give feedback to candidates, no matter what the final decision is. It’s always interesting for them to know what went smoothly and what they could improve.

What’s something that candidates are often surprised to learn about Sales at Groupon?

I think Groupon’s concept is pretty unique, so it’s really challenging and interesting to build win-win situations with local commerce! Also, helping small businesses grow is something captivating that helps you get up in the morning to go to work. Finally, I’d say that the environment at the office is very positive to inspire you, push you, and at the same time have fun!

What’s the #1 thing you wish all candidates did?

Put figures and concrete facts on their resume! And on a not-so-serious note, I like when candidates put their hobbies as it’s a cool way to break the ice and learn what they are passionate about.

How does your work impact Groupon’s mission of building the daily habit in local commerce?

By finding the best talent to promote Groupon on a local scale, my work helps the company to select candidates who care about local commerce and who are eager to create a win-win situation for businesses.

What’s your favorite memory so far?

My first-ever call at Groupon to a candidate would eventually be a hire a couple of weeks later! Also, during my first month, I had the chance to meet with our CEO Rich Williams during his tour of Europe!

And what was your first impression of Groupon as a workplace?

I was truly impressed with the pleasant atmosphere in the office. Everyone looks very dedicated to their work but at the same time, they don’t forget to have fun!

What’s your favorite local business?

Probably a beer bar close to Montmartre that offers cheese plates and charcuterie in a very cool setting. It’s called “La Binouze” (which means beer in slang) and they have such a large selection of different beers to try! If you go there please don’t forget to drink responsibly.    🙂

Join Groupon in Paris.

If you could do any other job for a day, what would it be and why?

President! I’d be curious to see the world from a different perspective and have the ability to help people on a bigger scale.

What inspires you?

Making Groupon a better place with awesome human beings in it!

Finally, tell us something about you that might surprise us!

I’m tall, very tall! (And I know if you ever see me you’ll ask, “how tall”?)

Chiara Coppola – Senior Recruiter in Milan

Chiara Coppola – Senior Recruiter in Milan

CHIARA COPPOLA

Senior Recruiter
Milan, Italy
Joined: 2011

Groupon veteran Chiara feels like Groupon Milan is her second home—a feeling she gets in part from the understanding and fun people she works with every day.

What teams do you recruit for?

I hire for all of our roles in Italy, but I primarily hire for our Sales organization.

What are some best practices for candidates to keep in mind if they’re interested in applying for a job here?

The #1 thing is that candidates should only apply to roles that they’re interested in and qualified for. Also, learn as much about Groupon as possible by checking Groupon.com and reading employee stories to learn more about what it’s like to work in Milan.

What inspires you?

I am inspired every day by the energy of our company. The relationships I have with my colleagues is great. We work hard but also have a lot of fun. Most important is we share success and difficulties together. That, for me, is a very inspiring way to work!

What’s unique about the teams you hire for?

I recruit for all kind of roles in Italy, but mainly sales roles. The synergy with the hiring manager is unique. Candidates really have the opportunity to learn about the role and the company and learn about the challenges and expectations of the role. In this way, they can have all the info to understand if they really fit the culture and the position. In my opinion transparency, from both side, is the most important thing during the recruiting process.

What are the top questions you get asked by candidates?

The most commonly-asked question is about their career path. Considering that the majority of our managers came from sales roles in Groupon, it is a pretty easy question to answer.   🙂

Another question is about onboarding and training. Candidates are usually very excited to work with, as they recognize we are in a challenging market, so they want to learn as much as possible before joining the field.

What was your first impression of Groupon?

I joined Groupon in 2011. I was “shocked” by everything: the open space, the energetic people, the fun attitude to the job. New deals, new processes, new products took shape every day. I suddenly understood I was on another planet; a very different company from my previous ones.

OK, so you’ve been here a LONG time. What keeps you excited to come to work every day?

I have been working for so long that I feel I’m at home! Plus, at Groupon everything is a rush, so you don’t’ have a chance to become bored. The people are the best asset at Groupon and working closely with all these energetic professionals is very inspiring. In the end what I love most about my job are my colleagues.

Anything a candidate should know about how to work with you or what to expect from the recruiting process? 

They should expect to be questioned about the business during their interviews. We often role-play sales scenarios with the hiring managers, so they must come well prepared about Groupon and our business model.

Tell us about your Recruiting team! How do you work together as recruiters? 

My team is spread all over Europe. I have one colleague or more in each country in which we operate. We work really well together, sharing our experiences and best practices. And when there is an unusual workload in a country, you can always count on your team member for support.

What’s something that candidates are surprised to learn about your hiring team? Or Groupon in general?

They are always surprised by the informal environment, the flat hierarchy, and the culture that allows everyone to make a real impact on the business. And they are also pleased to learn about the free coffee and fresh fruits available for everyone.

Tell us about the Milan office!

The vibe is very friendly and welcoming. What might surprise someone about it is the understanding and synergy among people; it is something you can breathe in as soon as you first step into the office.

Ready for your next move?

Why should a candidate join Groupon Sales over another company?

Sales is a tough job, so if you have the opportunity to have fun while doing it, why not join us?

What’s the #1 thing you wish all candidates did?

Enjoy the recruiting process and decide to join us!

What’s your favorite Groupon memory? 

I still remember the first Groupon party I went to. I had been working at Groupon for one week and was still getting accustomed to this crazy new world when I was suddenly at this event with a lot of young people, exhibition dancers, and an open bar…which I later found out is normal for Groupon parties.

Another great memory came a few years later at a team-building event that took place around Milan. Everyone from the Milan office and all of outside sales from Italy were involved in a lot of trials to prove their ability and win a competition. I don’t remember what my team ranked, but it was great fun and we laughed a lot!

Tell us something that might surprise us about you.

Every each month I try a new activity. I took at least one class of boxing, scuba diving, swimming, gym, dance, yoga…now it is riding time!

Karishma Patel Buford – VP of Global Talent Management

Karishma Patel Buford – VP of Global Talent Management

KARISHMA PATEL BUFORD
VP of Global Talent Management
Chicago, IL
Joined: 2016
As a global leader, I have found Karishma to proactively get to know each teammate both personally and professionally; she adapts her leadership style to meet individual needs. She also goes “hard” for her team and goes above and beyond to ensure that any obstacles in the way are broken down for their success (and the success of the initiative). She has been a tremendous add to Groupon and a great representation of someone who lives/models our Values every day. – Cassandra Black: Senior Lead, Talent and Inclusion & Diversity
Tell us about your leadership style. 

If you asked my team, I’m sure they would start and end with “driver,” which is always something to watch out for to avoid micromanaging or burning out my team in the process! I’m sure they would also say that I focus on the big picture and making an impact and that I am fearless in fighting the good fight.  

And what’s the most important quality in a teammate for your organization?

Focus on the solution, instead of just the problem. And follow through!

Talk about the time you realized your work was making a big impact. 

Since the question is the first time, I have to go back…way back to a very personal experience that changed my life and trajectory. I was in my 4th year of college and had just decided I was going to transfer out of my Biomedical Engineering major into Psychology. I was testing the waters by engaging in some extracurricular programs like volunteering at a crisis hotline and interning at the psych unit at UVa. It was a Sunday night when I had received a call at the crisis center from a father who had just taken his wife to the ER for a nervous breakdown and had come home to put his kids to bed. With a gun in his hand, he was ready to take his own life. The fact that he called first let me know there was a chance to save him. We spent two hours talking on the phone and at one point, I pointed out some conflicts in his thinking: that he believed his wife when she blamed him for their troubles but never when she told him she loved him. Somehow, simply helping him see the disconnect in his thinking was a breakthrough.

When the calls end in these situations, you never really know what happens next. But, the next day, I went on to my internship to interview a patient who had just been admitted the night before. After a few questions, it was clear that this was the wife of the man I had spoken to only 12 hours before. Two days later, he visited and I watched all four of them playing together with even a sense of calm. I knew then that I was meant to influence others, to change minds, and maybe even change hearts to make a difference in the world.  

How has working at Groupon impacted you?

Groupon has been an amazing ride in two short years. I’ve grown more as a leader and professional in these two years than ever before thanks to new experiences that have stretched me, lots of feedback from my customers and team, and most importantly, an incredible sense of pride for what my teams have accomplished through their unwavering focus and commitment.

Who are your biggest influences?

My family. My father who has taught me about excellence and striving for more; my mother who taught me compassion; my husband who has taught me about forgiveness and resilience; and my kids who have taught me about patience and true love.

Speaking of your family…what do your kids think you do?

Probably summarized as building great leaders. And now, as my role has expanded…hiring them!

What’s the last book you read?  

I just finished Ray Dalio’s Principles. It is spot on in terms of building a culture from the ground up and what really matters in building a high-performance organization.

Describe a unique breakthrough moment in your time at Groupon.

I think my team will be OK with me saying this because it was a great aha! moment for all of us. At our recent Talent Development & Diversity offsite, the entire global team got together. One of our lightbulbs was that in our super fast-paced environment—and though we talk all the time virtually—we really did not have a clear sense of each other’s challenges in different regions of the world. Because Groupon is headquartered in the US, the perception is that things run more smoothly with fewer challenges on this side of the pond. The reality is that we all have our challenges no matter where we sit, they are just different. So it’s important to always ask about what those are, have empathy, and collaborate together to figure out how to support each other as a team.

Describe your job in 10 words or less.

Support the business in attracting, selecting, developing, and retaining great talent. (11!)

Inspired by Karishma's story?

 
What’s the best advice you were ever given?

This is really tough to nail down to just one piece of advice. I have been fortunate to have found many amazing mentors in my career who have given me a great deal of wisdom and coaching along the way. The best advice is played out in the Jim Carrey movie, Yes Man. Say “yes” – even if it’s scary or if it means some short-term pain. Say “yes” to the experience if you want to have a life and career of endless possibilities. In short, own the experience! That was SO not on purpose. ; )

What have you done when you’ve encountered setbacks in your career?

Dust yourself off and try again. (Aaliyah, RIP.)

What’s your favorite local business?

Toss up between Big & Little’s—which is two blocks from my house and a Friday night go-to—and River North Car Detailing that does magic when faced with the aftermath of a three-year-old and a ten-month-old.   

What’s the last Groupon you used?

Team dinner at Sapori Trattoria in Chicago.

We know you love what you do at Groupon…but if you could try any other job for a day, what would it be and why?

Oprah. Meeting and talking with people about their journeys, what they’ve learned, and how they have and will change the world…there’s really nothing more inspiring. 

Sarah Duffy, Senior Corporate Recruiter

Sarah Duffy, Senior Corporate Recruiter

SARAH DUFFY

Senior Corporate Recruiter
Chicago, IL
Joined: 2012

Sarah—or “Duffy” as she’s fondly called on the Recruiting team—brings her contagious enthusiasm to the People Blog and reflects on 6 years of building teams at Groupon.

What are some best practices for candidates to keep in mind while they’re applying or interviewing here?

Make sure you read about Groupon and especially all the stories from the employees on our People Blog! (You’re already in it if you’re reading this, so be sure to poke around!) It’s a great way to learn about the team you’re interviewing for and what people say about working at Groupon. Also, think about what’s important to you in your next opportunity, whether it be specifics about the job, your team, your manager, or the office. Be prepared to ask many questions and learn a ton!

Who or what inspires you?

Motivational speeches. I know it might be weird, but they get me excited…especially hearing from women in leadership here at Groupon! I love attending speaker panels with Women@Groupon or any other professional development speakers we’ve had. Hearing their stories and how they’ve climbed the corporate ladder is very motivating and inspiring!

What was your first impression of Groupon?

That It was different, fun, and unlike any other office I’d walked into! Everyone I met was truly passionate about the company and showed they loved being there.

What’s awesome about the teams you work with?

You have the opportunity to be creative and innovative every day! This environment is always changing, so you’ll consistently be challenged and always learning along the way. It’s an environment that people love coming to and you will too! People have positive attitudes, they work hard, and they want to reach end goals. It’s contagious and I love it!

How does your work impact Groupon’s mission of building the daily habit in local commerce?

I’m recruiting great talent every day and the talent we have is what makes Groupon great!

What’s your favorite Groupon memory? The most random thing you’ve witnessed at the office?

One year on Halloween, one of our recruiters decided to dress up (and act) like our office mannequin. It scared quite a few people coming into the office!

What’s your favorite conference room?

There are a lot of amazing Groupon stories. What are you most proud of?

I’m proud to say I’ve been here in recruiting at Groupon for 6 years now! I’ve especially loved being able to help build our global interview guide over the last year. I’ve also been part of revamping our interview training and running the training throughout the year for our hiring managers. It has allowed me to build many new relationships, be part of building our one playbook for talent acquisition, and have the chance to apply it within the business. I love working towards making us better every day!

Anything a candidate should know about how to work with you or what to expect from the recruiting process?

Be yourself and ask questions!

What’s something that candidates are surprised to learn about Groupon?

I think most candidates come in surprised when they notice it’s not your normal office you see every day. We’re casual, we have an open space that allows you to collaborate, there is always a positive vibe, and people genuinely enjoy being here!

Ready for a new challenge?

What’s the #1 thing you wish all candidates did?

Research the company and have questions ready for the job and Groupon!

Tell us about your involvement with Women@Groupon!

What I love most about being a member of Women@Groupon is having the chance to learn new things and network with people I haven’t met yet within the company. It gives you the chance to meet with so many other great people in the company you haven’t worked with and a chance to learn what another area within the company is doing.

If you could do another job for just one day, what would it be and why?

I would be a bride again because I loved my wedding dress and would want to wear it all over again! I loved dancing in that dress!

Tell us something that might surprise us about you.

I’m going to Europe for the first time this summer!

Meet Rachel our ‘Boomerang’ EA

Meet Rachel our ‘Boomerang’ EA

RACHEL CLANCY

Executive Assistant
Dublin
Joined: 2015

Our Boomerang EA, Rachel juggles timezones, diaries, team events and supports no fewer than two of our Senior Business Leaders – so she’s busy alright! But she loves her job – read on to see why!

_______________________________

Tell us about your Groupon story so far.

Long version or short..? 🙂

I originally joined Groupon in 2015 as the Talent Acquisition Coordinator in the Dublin office. I worked with so many fantastic people all over EMEA from scheduling interviews worldwide to organising travel for candidates, helping some relocate to welcoming them and showing them around our cool Dublin office – I loved every minute of it! I took a mini hiatus in October 2016 until January 2017 to train as an Executive Assistant elsewhere before becoming ‘Boomerang’ and returning to Groupon.

My first day back last year I truly felt like I had come home. I love the people here. I work as an Executive Assistant and currently support two of our Senior Business Leaders who are amazing people to work with! They inspire me everyday – so smart, motivated and human.  My role involves but is not limited to scheduling meetings worldwide, sending agendas for meetings, taking minutes, booking rooms in various locations, pulling together decks, booking travel, organising team events / summits, helping with adhoc requests. I adore my job: no two days are ever the same!

 

What’s the secret to succeeding at Groupon? What type of person tends to excel here?

I think to work here you need to be adaptable, proactive and flexible. This is a rapidly changing environment so you need to be ready for anything! In saying that it is so much fun to work here! I think a sense of humour is so important too! We laugh every day!!

 

What is Groupon like as a workplace for women? Does it feel like a diverse, inclusive space?

I think Groupon is a fantastic place for women to work. We have women working in all areas of the business and many female Senior Leaders who are all inspirational to work with and for. We are lucky to have such an inclusive and diverse work space. We work in a company where flexibility is encouraged which is so important in this day and age.

 

“It can be hard at times as we seem to be hardwired to try and have it all and these women show us all we can have challenging, stimulating and successful careers as well as personal lives.”

How significant is it that we are launching Women@Groupon?

I think is fantastic we are launching Women@Groupon. It is a way for us to share our experiences and knowledge and encourage and support each other.  It is inspiring to see women excelling in their careers but having a work / life balance too. It can be hard at times as we seem to be hardwired to try and have it all and these women show us all we can have challenging, stimulating and successful careers as well as personal lives. Super exciting times for the new ERG here in Dublin!

What excites you about your work? What’s on the horizon that keeps you engaged and interested?

I love people! They are what motivates me. I buzz off their energy and the people in the Dublin office are a fantastic bunch – so smart, creative, fun, kind, courageous and funny. I love building relationships with my Execs, their fab teams and all the people I come into contact with really. I know that I am here to help them and enable them to do their jobs to the best of their abilities, so understanding their roles better and why they need my help keeps me motivated!

      

What’s the strangest thing you’ve seen in the office?

There are so many…..haha!  We have had Fancy Dress catwalk competitions (imagine Batman and Robin, Buzz Lightyear and Catwoman strutting across the canteen), PieDay the 13th (Ever wanted to smush a pie in your manager’s face – this was your chance!), Tarot card readers, real cats nesting under the floor of one of our meetings rooms (yes REAL cats!). Bring your dog to work day is fun too! But I think one of the strangest or most fun things is Christmas in our office. We go ALL out – we have had igloos, the Stranger Things Creature on the walls, Snowmen made from plastic cups, mini ski slopes, Santa stuck in the chimney to Santa’s Grotto (including snow, mulled wine, reindeer, real life Santa and an armchair from one of the team’s homes!)

 

What does your mother think you do?

Talk to people and organise things…. vague! 🙂 She knows I enjoy a good chat and that I need to engage with people to do my job and that I organise event type things a lot.  I think she also thinks in Tech companies like ours we sit on bean bags, chat and drink coffee all day!

“I feel truly lucky to work in our Groupon Dublin office. We have such a wonderful group of people that make coming to work every day educational, stimulating and fun!”

Meet Sarah from our EMEA Recruitment Team

Meet Sarah from our EMEA Recruitment Team

SARAH O’NEILL

 

Recruiter for Netherlands & Belgium
Based in Dublin
Joined: 2015

 

Entrepreneurial spirit and a killer aim when throwing custard pies: some of the skills that help Sarah succeed at Groupon.

Tell us about your Groupon story so far.

I joined Groupon 2.5 years ago as a Talent Sourcer for the Corporate side of the business. My role quickly progressed to a full cycle Recruiter giving me the chance to build strong relationships with other TA team members as well as hiring managers and work on loads of different types of roles for our business across EMEA. Basically, whatever required an extra pair of hands or was of urgency, I was happy to jump on board with!

In the past year, I moved to the Netherlands and Belgium markets (though I’m based in Dublin) where I lead all recruiting as their dedicated Recruiter and Talent Partner. It’s a challenging role at times considering the language and location barriers but it works well and my hiring team are a blast to work with!

What’s the secret to succeeding at Groupon? 

I would say things like Tenacity, Resilience and Grit are qualities that help people excel at Groupon and someone with an entrepreneurial spirit tends to do well here. I’d also say, don’t take yourself too seriously!

What is Groupon for women? Does it feel like a diverse, inclusive workspace?

In my experience Groupon is a great employer for women: there is a genuine, human side to the Managers and Leadership Team who clearly understand that sometimes life gets in the way of the standard 9-6 working hours. Groupon’s International Business is led by many strong women and they help shape our inclusive culture. During my time here I have met and worked with many women who have shaped me professionally and who I will call upon as mentors for the rest of my career – you know who you are!

 

There is a genuine, human side to the Managers and Leadership Team who clearly understand that sometimes life gets in the way of the standard 9-6 working hours.

 

Last year Sarah joined the team in Warsaw for a couple of months to assist on Customer Service hiring.

How significant is it that we are launching Women@Groupon?

The launch of Women@Groupon is hugely significant for our current and future employees: to have our male and female colleagues advocate for women in the workplace, for parity and for empowerment is truly inspiring to say the least. Makes it hard to believe that only 100 years ago we couldn’t even vote, how times have changed!

 

What’s on the horizon at work that keeps you engaged and interested?

I’m driven by relationships and people, I get really excited about building teams of quality people and seeing them flourish and I also love seeing my Hiring Managers get really excited about their new starters! Groupon is always moving, changing and adapting which keeps me engaged and excited and pushes me to constantly strive for improvement. My hiring managers and stakeholders in NL/BE are like another team that I truly feel connected to: I have their best interests at heart and want the best for their teams, so that keeps me on my toes too.

 

What’s the strangest thing you’ve seen in the office?

I think I have become accustomed to the weird and wonderful things that happen in the big green “World of Groupon” but a stand-out memory would be from when I first joined and took part in a charity contest – right in the middle of the canteen – where we basically ‘pie’d’ a group of people, one of which was my manager at the time. I came from a pretty corporate background so that was crazy to me, it was for charity though so all in the name of a good cause!

 

In a little over 2 years Groupon has as brought me to work in Poland, London, Dublin and Amsterdam and now with Belgium in the mix too, the exposure to international recruitment and the opportunities it presents are endless: the sky is the limit and the people are amazing!

 

Carlos Vale – Head of Diversity Recruitment

Carlos Vale – Head of Diversity Recruitment

CARLOS VALE
Head of Diversity Recruitment
Chicago, IL
Joined: 2017

Rainbow Flag on Apple iOS 11.3

If you see Carlos, give him a high five for snagging a spot on the Latinos 40 Under 40 list—an amazing accomplishment! We’re proud of the work he’s doing to make Groupon a more inclusive work environment. 👏👏🏾👏🏿

Why is it important for Groupon to support and champion the efforts of Pride@Groupon?

Pride gives us all an opportunity to reflect on what we can do for ourselves, and for others. It’s a celebration of not only the LGBTQ community but just community, in general.

How does it feel to work for an organization that embraces the LGBTQ+ community inside and outside the office?

As a gay man, it feels amazing to work for a company that embraces the LGBTQ+ community–it’s one less thing for me to have to worry about, which gives me more time to focus on impact and results. Part of why I do what I do is because I know that there are people out there in other parts of the world that are looking for a place to belong–a place that will accept them as who they are; I want those people to know that there are places and that Groupon is one of them.

How will you be celebrating Pride Month?

I’ll be supporting by attending a variety of Pride-focused events, and of course, attending the Pride parade here in Chicago.

What’s your favorite Groupon memory so far?

I think my favorite Groupon memory so far would have to be going to the Arlington Park Race Track with the Talent Acquisition team. I think I had been here for about two weeks, which provided a perfect opportunity to connect with everyone–it was a blast!

Tell us about your job! What do you love about what you do?

In short, I lead Groupon’s global diversity recruiting strategy in order to build robust pipelines of diverse talent for critical positions across all levels. As an ambassador of Groupon’s dedication to a more diverse and inclusive workplace, my role requires a highly relationship-driven approach to building and sustaining a deep and broad network of connections both inside and outside Groupon. Finally, through working cross-functionally with Recruiting, HR, and Talent Development while driving deeper collaboration with Groupon’s Employee Resource Groups, my role helps provide the framework for all business groups to embrace diversity.

No small feat, we’re sure! What’s challenging about your work?

In this field, building, assessing, and reworking strategy is always challenging no matter how supportive the organization may be. There isn’t a magic solution to this, and sometimes it feels like a shape-shifting puzzle–you think you’ve found the right piece, and surely, it changes shape right before your eyes; now, you are trying to figure out where the new piece fits. I love it, though–I’m a person totally driven by solving challenges!

So what makes your role at Groupon unique?

Although some iterations of my role exist outside of Groupon, the reason why I’m here is that I feel like I am generally given the opportunity to identify challenges/opportunities and come up solutions that are heard by many across the organization, including the CEO and other senior leaders. Most people wish they could have the opportunity to meet with their CHRO on a weekly basis, and possibly meet with their CEO and General Counsel on a monthly basis, but all of those things have been quite normal during my first months here.

Tell us about your first impression of Groupon as an employer.

My first impression…was that this is a great place to build things, as well as build on things. Here, I have the opportunity to create new things as well as build on some of the amazing things that have been previously started/accomplished.

If you could do any other job for a day, what would it be and why?

I would probably want to be the CEO of Groupon for a day, just to see what a day in their life is like. How early do they get up? How many meetings are they in? How do they find balance during the day to eat, or chat with their family? These are all questions I would love to know!

How does your work impact Groupon’s mission of building the daily habit in local commerce?

Our customers, employees, merchants, and investors come from many backgrounds. Through diversity recruitment, we are able to bring in diverse top talent that can help in the areas of talent, culture, and marketplace–all of these areas help us be better equipped to identify additional opportunities and resolve challenges more quickly through the diversity of thought.

Talk about our ERGs (Employee Resource Groups) and your experience working with them.

ERGs are central to our I&D mission of making Groupon a great place to work for every employee. In my time here, I’ve had the opportunity to do some amazing things with and through our ERGs–I’ll keep it to one example, though. When I first started, I wanted to put together an on-site event where we could invite diverse top talent to network and learn more about Groupon, while also ensuring that they were able to walk away with something. Once going through initial negotiations, I brought it to our ERGs to see if/how they could help–the results were great. In November, we co-hosted an event with the Association of Latino Professionals for America (ALPFA), attended by almost 100 professionals of all levels that were able to engage with our CFO, folks from our Talent Acquisition team, and employees from multiple departments. The coolest thing is that this was coordinated by Groupon en Espanol, and supported by Groupon4Vets and Women@Groupon!

Who or what inspires you?

I’m definitely motivated by visionary leaders who have overcome odds and have helped to make a difference in some way, shape, or form. I’m also motivated by the desire to be a good role model for my nieces and nephews. Finally, I’m motivated to pay it forward to others by providing and exposing me to opportunities, just as many have done for me.

Where can we find you outside of work?

I looooove playing volleyball–indoors, outdoors, and anything in between!

What’s your favorite local business?

I would say King Spa is my favorite local business. It’s nice to be able to feel like you can get away, locally. Also, it reminds me of my year in Japan in 2000, and that alone is worth the Groupon to get out to King Spa!

Can you write a Groupon haiku?

Different people, all coming together here, supporting local

Tell us something about you that might surprise us!

I lived in Japan for a year as a Rotary Youth Exchange student and absolutely loved the experience!

Daryl Billingsley – HRIS Analyst

Daryl Billingsley – HRIS Analyst

DARYL BILLINGSLEY

HRIS Analyst
Chicago, IL
Joined: 2015

If you ever need someone to talk HRIS -or- majestic birds with, Daryl is your go-to guy.

What’s your favorite Groupon memory?

Every workday is a new experience.

Tell us about your job! What do you do? What do you love about it?

I provide support for Workday (HCM) system-related functions via configuration and/or reporting.

What’s been the most challenging thing you’ve worked on?

Initially, increasing efficiency by creating more of a collaborative work environment.

Who or what inspires you? 

People still believing in HUMANity and my awesome BBoyz (sons).

What was your first impression of Groupon as a workplace?

Did I really just see someone in shorts, flip-flops, piercings, and exposed tattoos in a corporate meeting?! I thought it was a young, progressive, and promising startup.

What’s your favorite conference room name?

How does your work impact Groupon’s mission of building the daily habit in local commerce?

Cost-effectiveness, increased efficiency, timeliness, and reporting analytics.

There are a lot of amazing stories at Groupon. What are you most proud of?

I’m always proud of my HRIS and HR colleagues, but I’m most proud of my engagement in helping Groupon assist in rebuilding communal efforts and increasing diversity.

Have you won any awards? 

AJ Iniguez (from the Employment Brand team) told me I was awesome once.

What do your parents think you do?

Play on my laptop between meetings.

So you’re one of the co-chairs of B.I.G.! Tell us about your involvement with the ERG. 

I joined B.I.G. in order to assist in rebuilding our communal efforts, champion inclusion and diversity initiatives, and provide tools for professional development for the minority population.

What did you do before joining Groupon?

I worked fort a liquor distributor!

You have a life outside of Groupon, obviously, so what keeps you busy outside of work?

Rec with my sons, sports with my friends, and mastering the art of understanding that everyone is probably right in their opinion (regardless of logic).  😉

If you could do any other job for a day, what would it be and why?

I would record dope vocals in a professional recording booth. I’m sure my bath-time vocals would give people in the studio all the chills, as they give me the chills. (Brrrr, that dude is COLD!)

So why Groupon? What keeps you excited to come to work every day?

Groupon is unique in itself and there is something to be said in doing your part to increase a corporation’s overall efficiency. Plus, who doesn’t want to have the option of wearing shorts to work? 😉

Can you write a Groupon haiku?

Wait just a minute – –

There is a flying G-Cat – –

Where’s the sunroof switch

(Very nice!)

Tell us something about you that might surprise us.

I love to watch majestic birds. No, seriously, they’re awesome.

Lindsey Womack – Human Resources Business Partner

Lindsey Womack – Human Resources Business Partner

LINDSEY WOMACK

Human Resources Business Partner
Chicago, IL
Joined: 2010

Lindsey has held many roles in her time here (we count 5), all of which have enabled her to make a positive impact on the lives and experiences of local merchants, her direct reports, and finally the employees of Groupon. (We’re sensing a trend here.)

Tell us about your job! What do you do and what do you love about it?

As an HRBP, I support my business groups by helping them retain and grow talent. I enjoy working with people and finding ways to help employees grow in their career.

What’s been the most challenging thing you’ve worked on in your time here?

I worked on a project with many team members from the business, recruiting, and HR to update our Onboarding program. This was a challenging project because it was global, and we were working with teams in different countries and timezones to streamline our processes. We wanted to ensure the new hire experience is the same no matter what office or team you join.

What’s your favorite Groupon memory?

In 2010, there was a monkey dressed like Santa Claus that came to the office. There are always crazy things happening in the office and you never know what to expect: Zombies on Halloween, T-Rex running down the aisles, Steve Harvey, All-4-One singing in the lobby, the Abominable Snowman, etc.

What was your first impression of Groupon as an employer?

I first came to Groupon’s office in 2010 just a few days after moving to Chicago from Florida where I worked for a small company. I was drawn to the energy of the team, which at the time was dubbed the fastest-growing company ever!

How does your work impact Groupon’s mission of building the daily habit in local commerce?

I impact Groupon’s mission of building the daily habit by helping the business grow and retain talent.

There are a lot of awesome Groupon employee stories. What are you most proud of?

I started in 2010 as a Sales Representative and have been through many roles at Groupon including Account Manager, Team Lead, Divisional Sales Manager, and Human Resources Business Partner. While in my manager roles, I created processes to streamline onboarding for new hires in Merchant Support and created a program for Merchant Development to ensure recent graduates of our Onboarding program had the resources (mentors, training, etc.) they needed in order to be successful in their role. I’m proud of the programs I was able to create in sales and the career I have been able to build for myself at Groupon.

Have you won any awards during your time here?

President’s Club 2014! Also—funny story about President’s Club—my husband also works at Groupon (we met in college, but ended up here together). When I had found out that I won President’s Club, I let my husband, Jon, know that he would be my plus one. A couple days later, they sent out an email to all of the winners to join in a celebration, and my husband was on the email, too! Turns out we had both won that same year!

You’re a member of Women@Groupon; why did you join? What do you get out of it?

I joined Women@Groupon to expand my network and meet career-driven individuals who could offer different points of view. In 2013, I applied for the first mentor program for W@G and had a great mentor from our Legal department. It was so helpful to have my mentor’s perspective while I was going through my career changes at Groupon.

So backtracking a bit, how did you end up at Groupon from Florida?

Before Groupon, I worked as an Education Consultant at an audio-visual integration company in Orlando, FL. I sold A/V equipment such as projectors, screens, interactive whiteboards, and clicker systems to schools. My sister lived in Chicago and I wanted to experience living outside of Florida, so I packed up and moved without having a job, which was a little nerve-wracking. My sister told me about Groupon being the fastest-growing company ever at the time, and I decided to apply for a Sales role.

What are you up to when you’re not working?

I love to travel and have many places on my “to go” list. I also travel to Florida quite frequently to visit friends and family. I like to explore Chicago, try new restaurants, and love going to Broadway shows. I’m usually looking for a new workout to try and I also recently took up an adult tumbling class.

What’s your favorite view from the office?

If you could do any other job for a day, what would it be and why?

I would love to be a Cirque De Soleil performer and miraculously be able to do all of the stunts.

What’s your favorite local business?

Kibbitznest in Lincoln Park: it’s a cafe/bar with nostalgic games, coffee, wine, light bites, and CDs and records that you can play.

What do you love about Groupon?

I love what Groupon can do for local businesses. When I was an Account Manager, I spoke to so many business owners and heard great success stories of how Groupon helped their business. Many businesses were able to expand in product or services.

Tell us something about you that might surprise us!

I was in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade in New York when I was in high school; it is my favorite tradition to watch it every year.

Brent Eaton – Corporate Recruiter

Brent Eaton – Corporate Recruiter

BRENT EATON

Corporate Recruiter
Chicago, IL
Joined: 2015

The best advice Brent received before interviewing for his role at Groupon? Be yourself—and he is 100% that in his story and wants his candidates to do the same!

What teams do you recruit for?

Finance and Legal

What advice do you have for candidates who are heading into an interview at Groupon?

The best advice I could give someone while interviewing here is to be yourself. I was told that by my recruiter when I was hired, and I’m still here almost 3 years later!

What’s awesome about Finance at Groupon? Why join?

There are 4 big selling points for Finance here:

    1. The ability to make an actual impact and drive change. A lot of candidates come from larger, more structured companies. Typically, those companies are more established in their processes. Groupon’s open and collaborative environment in combination with having less rigid structure allows finance employees at all levels to share their ideas to improve process and procedures. We’re a 9-year-old company, so there is a lot we can still build!
    2. The culture! Our office is not your typical cubicle setting. The finance team sits together in an open-floor environment, fostering a more collaborative and exciting culture.
    3. It’s fast-paced. Like…really fast-paced. Each role has specific responsibilities they’re tasked with achieving. however, that’s not all your role will entail. Groupon is constantly evolving every day and the Finance team is given ad hoc projects on a daily basis. No day at Groupon is every the same!
    4. The ability to move around the company. We have many examples of people moving to a different team (or location!) within Finance or to the business. Both avenues are great to broaden one’s skill set. Check out Ron and Steve’s stories as examples of internal mobility!

What should a candidate expect from you during the recruiting process?

Honesty. Throughout the recruiting process, candidates should expect me to be candid with them. If a candidate does not move forward in the process, I believe it is important to provide specific feedback to help them with personal development. I’m here to help!

What’s something that candidates are surprised to learn about Groupon?

Candidates are most surprised about the opportunities to make an impact at Groupon. I hear from candidates all the time “My ideas get lost in the corporate ladder.” At Groupon, it doesn’t matter if you’re an analyst, manager, or director, we value everyone’s opinion. That is the only way we will be able to continue to innovate!

“Groupon’s open and collaborative environment in combination with having less rigid structure allows finance employees at all levels to share their ideas to improve process and procedures.”

Show us your favorite view from the office!

What’s your favorite Groupon memory?

My favorite Groupon memory happened last year. I received a gift card and a handwritten note from an employee I hired one year ago that day. He thanked me for recruiting him to Groupon and expressed how happy he was at that company. It was truly rewarding!

How does your work impact Groupon’s mission of building the daily habit in local commerce?

Our recruiting team is essential in building the daily habit in local commerce. We are tasked with finding the best talent from around the country for all departments. These individuals—at all levels—are equally important in building the daily habit. Without the talent, we wouldn’t be who we are today!

What was your first impression of Groupon as an employer?

Crazy, but in a good way! When I saw the quirkiness of the office and the open floor setting, I was truly in shock.

What’s your biggest Groupon accomplishment?

I’m proud of the success stories from candidates I have hired. Many of them have excelled in the area I hired them in. Others have moved on to other areas of the business they did not start in. Those folks have expanded their skill set and made themselves more attractive for long-term growth. I couldn’t be happier in helping them achieve their career goals!

You of course love recruiting and would never want to do anything else…but if you could do any other job for a day, what would it be and why?

If we are talking about Groupon, I would join the Groupon+ team. Being a part of a company-changing initiative would be so cool. In terms of a job outside of Groupon, I would definitely be a Sportscenter anchor. It is basically my dream job.

Tell us something about you that might surprise us. 

I enjoy public speaking. I come off as a quiet guy but I actually like to speak in front of crowds. As I grow in my career, I would love the opportunity to be a part of a panel at conferences, events, etc.

 

Mike Erickson – Corporate Recruiter

Mike Erickson – Corporate Recruiter

MIKE ERICKSON

Corporate Recruiter
Chicago, IL
Joined: 2013

You won’t believe what this recruiter wants you to do on a phone screen.

What teams do you recruit for?

Sales in Chicago and Phoenix

What’s your advice for someone interested in applying at Groupon?

Be yourself and only apply to roles that you are most interested in.

Anything a candidate should know about how to work with you during the recruiting process?

Be prepared to tell me why you’re excited about the role: I love chatting with folks who have that enthusiasm for the position that they are applying for!

What qualities do the most successful sales reps have?

First and foremost, ya gotta WANT to be in sales. Sales is tough: you have to know why you want to be in a sales role in order to succeed. Whether you are money motivated or passionate about helping small businesses, that “why” has to be a clear motivator for you to keep pushing through those tough sales days. Once you have that, I find that the people who know how to nail that balance being coachable and being self-sufficient are our strongest sales reps. We have a great team of mentors and leaders here who know how to be successful, but at the same time, they won’t make your calls for you. Striking that balance is key for finding that success.

What’s your proudest Groupon accomplishment?

Being a Sales Recruiter is usually a lot of crazy ups and downs in terms of volume. One of our craziest times was the opening of our sales office in Phoenix; everyone was all-hands-on-deck to get quality people in the office and making sales and it was all during the holiday season. We filled the office then and I continue to fill it today, now being the primary recruiter for the Phoenix office. I love that office a ton and I’m happy I get to interact with them on a daily basis!

What’s the #1 thing you wish all candidates did?

Beatbox during phone screens.

Tell us more about the Phoenix office! What’s it like there?

The Phoenix office has such an infectious and positive energy to it. I’ve visited a handful of times recently, and as soon as you walk in the door it’s hard not to have a smile on your face. I will describe it as best as I can:

As you enter the office, you see the gleaming smile of our Sales Trainer, Jabril Baker, giving some solid sales advice while boppin’ to whatever jam is being played by Marlon Evans, one of the sales managers. I turn to my left and say “WAZZUP” to Kelly Light, the Site Director, and give Sam, the Phoenix HR Business Partner, a high five. I keep walkin’ past all the sales folks, giving as many finger guns as humanly possible, then make my way to the crown jewel of the office; the Coke Freestyle machine. I pour myself a refreshing beverage then head back to my makeshift desk space. As I’m about to start doing some work, my senses are absolutely overloaded with the fresh scent of the peanut-butter stuffed pretzels, the snack of snacks. I grab a handful and try to hold back happy tears. “This is paradise,” I say to no one in particular.

“The only Keane album I enjoyed was Strangeland.”

How does your work impact Groupon’s mission of building the daily habit in local commerce?

I get to hire people who help small businesses find success in an increasingly big-business world. I’m super into that. I love small businesses and we get to help them succeed.

Talk about your involvement with Blacks in Groupon (BiG) – what does your partnership with them look like?

I’m the talent partner for Blacks In Groupon (BiG). My goal is to provide resources to the group as to how to utilize their networks to bring in top talent, as well as being a resource for current members in terms of internal options if they want to search for a new role at the company.

What’s your favorite Groupon memory?

I do a lot of comedy stuff here in Chicago, and in April of 2014 I had my first live show. I was so nervous to actually perform in front of people for the first time, and a few minutes before showtime, I look out into the audience and my entire recruiting team was in the front row. This was the first time it really hit me how lucky I was to work for this great company. Here was this team that barely knew me, front row of a show in which I danced around the stage like Paula Deen. I’ll never forget that for as long as I live.

Who inspires you?

Folks who wear shorts during the winter because “they don’t get cold.” Hehe, just kidding. I have been inspired by a wide variety of things, but mostly musical theater, baseball games, and my brother Samb.

Do you beatbox on phone screens?

What was your first impression of Groupon?

Whoa! What a cool place. How neat are these swinging chairs! Let me go to the 4th floor to check that out. Oh god, I am locked in a stairwell.

What’s your favorite local business?

Southside Sub Shop in Elmira, NY. They have the best bread in the world. They also do this thing where they add just a smidge too much mayonnaise, but it mixes with the bread and hot peppers so well that you don’t even care at all.

What’s something that candidates are surprised to learn about Groupon?

The vast majority of the company has breakfast at least a few times a week.

If you could do any other job for a day, what would it be?

My dream job is to be what Andy Richter is to Conan – the late night host’s sidekick.

Tell us something about you that might surprise us.

The only Keane album I enjoyed was Strangeland.

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