Genuine, hardworking, fun, knowledgeable — AC’s Corporate Trainer, Rachelle Bishop, is a valuable asset to our company and our clients. Because the month of May is a time to appreciate teachers and Moms who shine in their roles, we wanted to shine a spotlight on Rachelle, who is an educator and a Mom herself.
We sat down with Rachelle to ask her about her role as our Corporate Trainer. We couldn’t help but get her thoughts on some tile too.
AC: Tell us a bit of background about yourself, how did you come into your current role with Architectural Ceramics?
Rachelle: I am an Interior Designer by education, but fell into sales when I lived in Arizona. After my husband and I moved to the DC area in 2011, I found Architectural Ceramics. Selling tile from the Rockville Showroom was a natural transition.
After a couple years, Betty – the owner of Architectural Ceramics, asked me to help her manage aspects of the Rockville showroom remodel, as well as develop and implement a new sales platform called Salesforce. From that, we all discovered that I have a knack for training, and that is when I realized what I am passionate about. I haven’t moved from my training position since.
AC: With an interior design degree, your home must have lots of style. What is your favorite style? Have you used any AC tile in your home?
R: I am very eclectic. I love a lived-in feel that says “welcome”. I tend to be drawn to various styles and just hope they are harmonious when put together! And, for now I am a renting, but you can bet when I am a home owner AC tile will be all over! From the stair risers to the backsplash!
AC: Since you mentioned backsplash tile, which AC tile collection is your favorite?
R: Can I mention two? It’s like picking a favorite child! I love all of our custom capabilities. That said, my first favorite is from Pratt & Larson. The Textures Collection, especially when put on a fun shape like an elongated hexagon, looks great.
My second favorite is from New Ravenna – I cannot get enough of the whimsical and fun KIDDO Collection!
AC: Favorite tile, check. What’s your favorite part about working with Architectural Ceramics?
R: THE PEOPLE! Every day they lift me up to be the best I can be. I get to watch our amazing sales team guide their clients through the design process, our product team work hard to bring the most innovative and beautiful products in, the warehouse team deliver to a happy client and be the finishing touch for our clients. AC is about being caring and capable – I feel that every day, be it internally with my peers or externally in their day-to-day interactions with our clients.
AC: We do have a caring and capable feeling, yes! How do you feel about AC’s Core Values?
R: The Core Values are so ingrained in our culture, it is hard to believe we only launched them a year and a half ago. The reality is, I believe we were already living them out long before the values were categorized and put into words. They are a baseline for all of us – a filter to view my own personal day-to-day tasks and interactions through.
AC: For you, day-to-day training happens across five showrooms and includes all areas like our sales process and product knowledge, to new hires and computer software. How do you get it all done?
R: I had to learn to plan and schedule my day. I am very diligent about putting every meeting on my calendar. In addition, anytime I can buddy up staff for a group training, I prefer that. Not just because of time management, but I love the collaboration that comes out of these meetings.
Also, I have been known for waking up very early to finish my work. I think best in the morning and can accomplish a lot during those hours when most everyone else, my kids including, are asleep.
AC: Whether it’s at work teaching us the difference between porcelain and ceramic tile, or at home teaching your kids the difference between right and wrong, what’s most rewarding for you about training others?
R: In both instances, I LOVE watching the growth of others – people fulfilling their potential. It makes me happy to develop others. I want to be someone that lifts others up, anytime I can.
In training others, I’ve grown too. A new side of me emerged that I am happy to see. Patience is a virtue! I have never been a patient person until I started training others. People will compliment me on how patient I am with others and I always think, “Wow, how I have evolved!”
AC: You’ve grown in your training role with AC, and you’ve also grown in your tile knowledge after passing the Certified Ceramic Tile Salesperson (CCTS) Exam. How does the new title feel?
R: It feels like a nice sense of accomplishment to be certified in tile sales and specifications. Thanks to preparing for the CCTS exam, administered by the Ceramic Tile Distributor Association, I have a much better understanding of the industry’s standards in regards to installation and product manufacturing.
I learned so much during this process and cannot wait to lead the rest of our team into attaining the CCTS certification themselves! At AC we pride ourselves on being knowledgeable in tile and installation. I believe that knowledge is power. This certification will only help to solidify us as professionals in the industry.
Our friendly, knowledgeable staff is always happy to help advise on tile design. Visit one of our DC, MD, or VA tile showrooms for a free tile design consultation.