Kendra McAdams (MBA ’12) has a unique talent for bringing people together in pursuit of a common goal.
“When I think about HR, one of the reasons I went into the field is because people are such a vital part of any organization,” she says. “In HR, your customers or clients are generally your colleagues at your place of employment. My job is to help make the company a great place to work.”
Kendra majored in communications and Spanish as an undergraduate at Wake Forest Univerity, uncertain where that would take her in her career. A business class for non-majors that explored organizational behavior piqued her interest. Her first job out of school was with a financial software company, and her passion for client training and coaching inspired her to pursue a career in HR.
She chose the Wisconsin MBA Program at the Wisconsin School of Business because she wanted to specialize in strategic human resources management while getting a core business education. She was busy away from the classroom, too, volunteering for many extracurricular activities such as Graduate Women in Business and the MBA Commencement Campaign.
“It was a chance to flex other skills—leadership, project management,” she says. “In orientation, Professor (Kenneth) Kavajecz told our class, ‘When you approach your time at Wisconsin, ask for more than you think you deserve and give more than you think you owe.’ That just really resonated with me.”
The importance of building relationships was a key takeaway from her Wisconsin experience, Kendra says, and one that serves her well at work and away from it.