Salesforce Admins Podcast

This week on the Salesforce Admins Podcast, we’ll hear from Hayley Tuller, a Project Manager at Arkus and a part of our Salesforce Military community. We learn how she’s applied the lessons she learned from twenty years in the Navy to her career in Salesforce.

Join us as we talk about how to eat the elephant one bite at the time, how Hayley approaches radical ownership, and the idea of upward leadership.

You should subscribe for the full episode, but here are a few takeaways from our conversation with Hayley Tuller.

Starting with a service mindset.

“I think I did have a bit more unorthodox background than most folks do, although I think the Salesforce community is one of those places where everybody comes from a surprising place,” Hayley says. Her story begins when she enlisted in the Navy, where she spent twenty years in service as an Arabic linguist and a cryptographer and ended up deployed in Afghanistan and Iraq, among other places.

In 2012, Hayley took advantage of the GI Bill to get into nonprofit work. “It felt like a natural transition for me—I had a service mindset and I felt like I had a lot to offer in terms of data analysis and operational management,” she says, “from that I got into databases and nonprofits and it was probably a very short road from there before the Salesforce community found me, and here I am today.”

How to manage lots of priorities.

“The military taught me a lot about how to make decisions for priorities and manage lots of taskers,” Hayley says, “but I think one of the biggest things I got out of it is that a lot of it is your mindset.” The first rung on the ladder can feel like the longest reach, but getting there can make everything after it look a lot better. “We used to joke, when I was on deployment, that the only way to eat an elephant was one bite at a time,” she says.

One major skill Hayley learned in the Navy that has been helpful in her professional life is risk assessment. “It’s really just a way of looking at the tasks that are in front of you and assessing the likelihood of a problem and the impact of that problem, and using those two factors decide what you need to pay attention the most,” she says, “and when you apply that to everything you do you get a lot of clarity really quickly.” One of the biggest tips Hayley has is to get everything in one place so you can see it and make decisions accordingly.

Radical ownership.

“Probably the biggest thing I took away from my Navy career is this sense of what a lot of people call radical ownership,” Hayley says, “when I was in the service we just called it accountability.” It’s this idea that the buck stops with you—if you’re responsible for something it’s not OK to throw your hands up in the air and quit. You can ask for help, but you’ve got to work through any difficulties you encounter along the way, and you just might surprise yourself with what you’re able to accomplish along the way.

The idea of upward leadership.

“Leadership is not something that we just do in a downward focus—we don’t just lead down—you have to lead up as well,” Hayley says, “upward leadership is about being there to support your supervisors, actively asking those questions, stepping forward when you see things that can be solved, and helping them be equipped to make the best decisions that they can possibly make.” That comes down to trust, loyalty, and the ability to be assertive and say what needs to be said if there’s a problem.

At the same time, when it comes to leading people under you, Hayley says “the biggest gift you can give to the folks that you work with and who work for you is belief in themselves.” One of the hardest things you have to do is step back and let a subordinate do something and trust that they’ll succeed, but it’s so rewarding to see them succeed.



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