CEStv Presents: Women in the Industry | CNS Director Nancy Ramdon-Connolly
To celebrate women in the electrical industry, City Electric Supply (CES) asked women in the field to share their journeys and give advice to anyone interested in pursuing a career in the same vein. In this special segment of CEStv, CEStv Presents: Women in the Industry, City Electric Supply sheds light on their stories of growth, empowerment, and achievement.
Nancy Ramdon-Connolly, CES Director of Sales and Operations for Corporate and National Solutions (CNS), said she “fell into” the electrical industry. Then she fell in love with it.
Moving Away to Move Up
Ramdon-Connolly moved from Jamaica to the U.S. at 17 years old to pursue education and support her family. To pay the bills and send money back home, she lived with friends and worked several-part time jobs while attending night classes at school.
But one position clicked with her more than the others: she helped customers at the counter of an electrical supplier. In the following years, she wore many hats, working her way up to customer service management, then project management.
“Taking on additional challenges and responsibility just made sense to me,” said Ramdon-Connolly. “I didn’t start knowing that my job could be a career, but that’s exactly what it was.”
John Gray, Co-Chief Operating Officer at CES, was impressed by Ramdon-Connolly’s talent and approached her to share a new opportunity. The company’s direction and family atmosphere interested and excited her.
In 2019, she joined CES as Director of Sales and Operations for CNS. This department provides a one-stop shop for companies that need help with construction, remodeling, or maintenance.
And although Ramdon-Connolly described herself as independent, she appreciates that feeling of belonging within the industry. One of her favorite memories is from a recent company event. She enjoyed getting to know other women in leadership positions across the company and hearing their stories.
Building a Career and a Life in the Electrical Industry
“I’ve grown up in the electrical industry, so it is very special to me,” said Ramdon-Connolly. “I’ve made a lot of friends; I’ve had a lot of mentors. My favorite thing about the electrical wholesale industry is the people,” said Ramdon-Connolly.
Her drive and ability to think ahead are just some of the qualities that help her succeed.
“Some of the lessons that I’ve learned being in this industry is — you have to be proactive. You have to be consistent. You never give up, and you never burn your bridges,” said Ramdon-Connolly.
Additionally, she balances her independence with her team leadership, motivating herself and others to do their best.
“A saying that I live by is, ‘Don’t ever clip my wings.’ I like my voice to be heard; I like to be a contributor. I also like to inspire and influence, and give people the opportunity to grow,” said Ramdon-Connolly.
Since the pandemic began, she worked hard to keep her team connected when working from home. Not just professionally but also to support those who lost family members.
And she sees a part of herself in so many within the industry, which helps her build connections.
“What makes CES special from other places I’ve seen is that leadership roles are filled by such a diverse group,” said Ramdon-Connolly. “So many have been truck drivers, in the warehouse, in counter sales, so they have a deep respect for every role in the company. They grew up in the company like a family, and that’s why I love working here.”
Advice to the Next Generation of Women in the Industry
“My advice to young women in the next generation of the workforce is very simple — be true to yourself and never compromise your core values,” said Ramdon-Connolly.
She also said to work hard and invest a lot into one’s career, and perhaps most importantly, create a plan to follow.
“If you don’t establish a goal, it’s very easy to lose focus,” said Ramdon-Connolly. “I would say to my younger self, ‘What’s your plan? Where would you like to be in five years?’”
Lastly, she addressed the misconception women have limited roles for women in the electrical industry.
“We have women who are sales representatives, operations department managers, installers, and CEOs,” said Ramdon-Connolly. “Our industry—and the women in it—are thriving.”
We hope Nancy Ramdon-Connolly’s story interests and excites you to learn what you can bring to the electrical industry.