Meet the Team: Danielle Hall, the Windmaster

Wed, Mar 16, 2016

Danielle Hall has been the “wind beneath our wings” at CSG for over 13 years. She’s our Director of Production and Operations and makes sure everyone’s projects are off the ground and moving swiftly along, while maintaining  top-quality, customer-oriented service on time and on budget. And when I say “wind,” I mean constant nagging!  DH3

Q: What is your favorite part of your job?

A: I really enjoy proofing. It’s straightforward and fun to ferret out errors, anomalies, etc., and it provides a nice change of pace from other responsibilities, although it can be a bit madcap when lots of deadlines converge. I also enjoy building relationships with our vendors so that we can work as a team to create the best products and meet the myriad deadlines. I would say that partnerships with our vendors, clients and each other is what has kept so many of us happily engaged in CSG’s mission – five of us CSGers have worked together for a decade.

Q: How do you keep on top of such an ever-evolving business?

A: Our vendors play a huge part by bringing us all the latest in formats, latest technologies, etc., and I read a lot of trade magazines and blogs. All of us keep our eyes open to what’s happening “out there,” even turning a sharp eye at what comes in the mail at home. The production department holds Lunch and Learns for the staff from time to time so that we can all share ideas and products, helping us stay updated.

Q: If you had a soapbox, what would you like to share with other businesses?

A:  That’s easy – Keep your message consistent in tone and style, but keep it fresh, too. It’s so easy to settle into what’s been done successfully before, but we all need to keep an open mind and mix up what we’re doing. These days there are so many ways to keep relevant. Think of social media, for example, as a way to both keep up with peers in your work life and keep from being too insular. It’s hard to do anything attention-grabbing using the same approach over and over.

Q: How do you relax when you’re not working?

A: My husband and I like hiking. Old Rag Mountain in Virginia is just about perfect: hiking + scrambling over the rocks, topped off by great views. And, of course, we try to incorporate the occasional wine tasting trail whenever possible. I’m also guilty of binge-watching my favorite TV shows: Doc Martin, Archer, House of Cards, to name a few. Toss in a sarcastic cartoon character and I’m in.

Q: What’s on your bucket list?

A: I would love to travel to Fiji, New Zealand and Australia – they’re beautiful and have lots of cute animals. I’m a huge animal nut, especially cats and dogs. I have the makings of a crazy cat or dog lady, but I try to keep it in check. I’d love to buy a huge parcel of land and start an animal sanctuary for injured, old or abandoned pets, but first I’d have to win the lottery. Well, first I’d have to buy a ticket.

Q: What past travel experiences stand out for you?

A: Even though I lived in a lot of places as a military brat, including seven years in what was then West Germany, where I was born, and Kansas, Arizona and Hawaii, I still love to travel as much as possible. Probably our favorite travel experience was chartering a private plane to Wrangell Island, Alaska, where we visited a bear sanctuary. Ironically, when we got back to our rental house, we had a better up-close-and-personal view than at the sanctuary when we were treated to watching a mother bear with her two cubs snuffling around and eating berries right under our window.

That may be one of the secrets to Danielle’s work style – when you live in different places, you have to be flexible, keep an open mind and learn to adapt to changing environments. We appreciate those qualities and her strong work ethic, always jumping in when something needs to be done – and best of all, she never misses our CSG happy hours!

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