Frank Villasenor came to Pepperdine 14 years ago as a former construction contractor looking for a steady job and a situation that would allow him more time with his young family.
Now serving as the Manager of Custodial and Residential Services, Frank gets to give the same thing to his team of 38 mostly Spanish-speaking employees.
Like Frank himself, many of his employees have come from low-paying jobs and negative work environments. But they find something very different at Pepperdine. “It’s a dream job. Pepperdine gives you the ability to have a balanced life. You can take care of your family and spend time with them. It’s a great example of the way it should be.”
For many of his employees, it’s the first time they’ve been eligible for benefits. “It’s hard to see the value if you haven’t seen the other side,” he says, “I’ve worked where you don’t get vacation, you don’t get sick time, and no benefits – you just get paid.”
Benefits education is an important component to managing his staff. “Many of my employees either don’t know or can’t read about the benefits available to them,” he shares, “so I’ve worked with HR to host events with interpreters and make sure we have documents available in Spanish.”
More than just benefits, Frank supports the growth and development of his staff. “Sure, you’re just a custodian now, but you can learn as much as you can.” He’s even willing to lose his employees if they’re given a promotion elsewhere: “I want them to be the first people others look to hire. My goal is to build them up as much as I can, and if they have the opportunity to move on, that’s great.”
With Frank’s selfless and positive attitude, it’s not surprising he’s joined the ranks of Pepperdine’s best managers. Even with a decade of promotions and experience under his belt, he’s fast to praise his team: “I have a great staff, and we’re getting better each year.”
You can reach Frank Villasenor via e-mail at email@example.com.
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