#BEYOUROWN MEETS CHARLENE PARKS

#BEYOUROWN MEETS CHARLENE PARKS

Founded by Charlene Parks, Ameka Consulting Group is a Woman and Minority-Owned Business Enterprise WMBE specialising in information technology and project management consulting, training and long & short-term staffing solutions.   Having worked in the Information Technology field in various capacities for over twenty years for companies such as E*TRADE Financial, Ford Motor Company, NCR, and several […]

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Founded by Charlene Parks, Ameka Consulting Group is a Woman and Minority-Owned Business Enterprise WMBE specialising in information technology and project management consulting, training and long & short-term staffing solutions.  

Having worked in the Information Technology field in various capacities for over twenty years for companies such as E*TRADE Financial, Ford Motor Company, NCR, and several start-ups, Charlene Parks decided to start Ameka Consulting Group, Inc. to contribute to educating the next generation of Project Management and IT Leaders by leveraging her skills, experience and insider knowledge.

By understanding and taking a proactive approach towards finding qualitative, perfectly skilled talent for future initiatives, their clear mission to meet every business’s objective is evidently met by this method.

Founded by Charlene Parks, Ameka Consulting Group is a Woman and Minority-Owned Business Enterprise WMBE specialising in information technology and project management consulting training, and long & short-term staffing solutions. 

Having worked in the Information Technology field in various capacities for over twenty years for companies such as E*TRADE Financial, Ford Motor Company, NCR, and several start-ups, Charlene Parks decided to start Ameka Consulting Group, Inc. to contribute to educating the next generation of Project Management and IT Leaders by leveraging her skills, experience and insider knowledge.

By understanding and taking a proactive approach towards finding qualitative, perfectly skilled talent for future initiatives, their clear mission to meet every business’s objective is evidently met by this method.

Thank you for joining us Charlene, can you tell us a little bit about your background story and how it reflects who you are and what you do today?

My name is Charlene Parks, and I am on a mission to provide job candidates like you with the skills and qualifications needed to improve your employment opportunities, secure more jobs, and make more money your field, my focus is primarily IT & Project Management roles, but I can work in any field.  I hold a Bachelor of Science degree in Information Technology, an MBA from Walsh College w/ a specialization in Project Management, and I’ve completed some doctoral coursework in Project Management & Cybersecurity. I am a Project Management Professional (PMP), Certified ScrumMaster (CSM), Lean Six Sigma Black Belt (LSSBB), and until recently, the Sponsorship Manager for the Project Management Institute, Great Lakes Chapter. I also hold Program, Portfolio Management, and Leadership completion certifications from various organizations.

When I’m not travelling with my family, taking flying lessons, or working out, I am working to ensure that every job candidate I work with has the tools needed to position themselves as a valuable resource that employers in the Project Management & IT fields hire time and time again.

When first attending college, my major was Electrical Engineering with a minor in Computer Information Systems. I realized quickly that I loved coding and IT and loved everything about technology. From there a seed was planted. While still in college, I worked for a marketing firm coding, then my first “real” job was working as a technical support analyst supporting point-of-sale software and hardware systems. Along the way, I explored other career avenues, but it always led me back to Information Technology – it truly is my 1st love.

For the past ten years, I have worked managing programs and projects for private and public firms, as well as government agencies. Right after my last child was born, I found myself unfulfilled and not happy with the flexibility available to be present for my children and the true lack of representation in the IT & Project Management fields. Ameka was founded on the premise that we will help our clients find high-quality, well-trained staff, and also offer them effective IT & Project Management Solutions that is cost-effective to improve revenue. On the other hand, having those relationships, we understand the challenges our clients have when finding top-talent, so we partner with prospective candidates by advising them on the skills gaps they may have and offering them training, resume assistance, and professional development to help bridge the gap between what employers are seeking and the skills our people possess.

Can you take us through Ameka Consulting Group as a certified woman/minority-owned business enterprise?

Ameka Consulting Group, Inc. holds the following certifications:

  • Woman-owned business (WBE)
  • Minority-Owned Business (MBE)
  • SBA Women-Owned Small Business (WOSB)
  • Wayne County Airport Authority Small Business Enterprise (SBE)

We obtained these certifications to gain enhanced contracting abilities, as well as to meet and learn from other W/MBE firms. Many large corporations set aside funding specifically for minority and women-owned entities, which allows us to get our foot in the door to compete with the larger more established firms.

Can you talk us through the setup process, the initial launch and the company structure?

Ameka was set up as an S-Corporation in the State of Michigan and our accountant advised us to use that business structure to avoid double taxation. Setting up the corporation was really easy; all of the paperwork was filled online and in about three days we were a Corporation. From there, I obtained our EIN and DUNS numbers and opened the business bank account.

How you are balancing the work/life strife?

Planning and organisation. I am usually up by 4AM, and I usually spend half a day planning the goals that I want to accomplish for the upcoming week. I like being present for my children and I am usually working in between my family activities. I think when you love what you do truly, it doesn’t seem like work. I live by the mantra to create a life that I don’t need a vacation from.

What platforms are you using as marketing tools to promote Ameka Consulting Group?

I use Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Eventbrite, Youtube, and Google.

Do you currently use any apps or tools to help the functionality of your business practice?

I use an applicant tracking system, job boards to post jobs, CRM to managing client accounts, and various other software to support the day-to-day operations, like email, finance, proposal software.

Who is the most influential female within STEM that you admire and why?

Debra L. Johnson, she is the Director of Office of Procurement at the NASA Johnson Space Center and I was really impressed with her background and her passion to mentor youth. According to the NASA website, Ms Johnson serves as Director, Office of Procurement for the NASA Johnson Space Center where she is responsible for the management direction and effectiveness of all procurement functions, including pricing, small business utilization, audit liaison, labour relations, and contractor outreach.

She serves as a member of the Board of Directors for the Texas Business Alliance, the Space Center Houston, the National Contract Management Association, and Chairperson for the Johnson Space Center Exchange Scholarship Committee.

Ms Johnson received the Women of Color Government and Defense Technology Award for her work in mentoring small businesses and the Meritorious Senior Executive Award in 2005 and the Presidential Distinguished Rank Award in 2009.

If you could tell your 18-year old self a solid piece of advice, what would it be?

To follow your dreams now, don’t wait. I spent a lot of time doing what I thought others wanted instead of cultivating the skills that light me up. I would encourage any young person to follow your true passions early, be authentic, and follow your heart – the rest will follow.

What does #BEYOUROWN mean to you?

Owning my voice and allowing myself the freedom to express myself, no matter who likes it or not. Being brave and resilient, while embracing life and all of its beauty.

What does 2020 look like for you and how are you looking to expand Ameka Consulting Group?

I am currently looking into a few new products and service offerings for 2020, like creative services, like web, mobile, and software development projects. I also recently launched live events to teach project management and business management workshops. All very exciting stuff.

 

 

Twitter: @amekaconsulting

Instagram: @amekaconsulting

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC9uLPe2NldNekWEIkVy-tEw?

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/amekaconsulting/

Website: https://amekaconsultinggroup.com

 

 

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