Every now and then, we'll post an interview with one of our staff members so you can get to know our team a little better. Today, we're spotlighting Ali Chehab, our Hive Queen and "everything lady." She's been invaluable to us in the business realm, keeping us on track and organized, and doing much more than we have time or space to mention here.
So, let's dive right in with the Q&A! . . .
Do you have any side projects that you would like to share with us?
I always have side projects! Sometimes I have way too many to process the sheer amount of things I want to do! Right now I am working on painting and textile works to be launched into my art business. You can find my work on Instagram @Kalli.ArtsFL and on my website KalliArts. I am very excited to start selling my and my mom’s work in 2020 and really creating a foundation for that business.
Outside of KalliArts I also do woodworking, cross-stitching, fabric dying, and too many more things to count. I love making things and coming up with unique solutions to everyday problems. I also love being able to supply trade skills for my family so that we can always have quality products in our home!
Do you have children or fur babies?
I live in a multi-generational household with my father, who retired from the Air Force, and my mom! Because of this, my fur baby family is quite extensive. We have two black cats, an orange cat, and two terriers (one West Highland and one Lakeland). Outside of the house we have frequent nature babies, which include bunnies, wild turkeys, sandhill cranes, and even a spotting of a bobcat.
My husband and I have been married for six years and plan on growing our family in the near future!
What skills do you bring to the Thinklings team?
My skills are VERY diverse and always growing and expanding. I help with everything from video editing to scheduling, virtual office organization, website maintenance, reading through queries, and all other office-related tasks. My go-to question when our lovely business owners ask if I can do something or if I should be the one to do something is “Does it require your special skills to complete?” If they answer no, then it is something that I will or can handle and take care of!
What did you go to school for, and does it help you at Thinklings?
I got my bachelor's degree in design and technical theater with a mathematics minor. Now first, yes, I am one of those left-brain/right-brain people who loves and excels at both! Second, I now consider this my life-skills degree. I learned so many trade skills by getting my theater degree that I use all of them in my day-to-day life. For Thinklings, the main skill or position I utilize the most is my stage manager training. Being a stage manager meant that I was constantly wrangling and organizing creative types. Managing creative types is a VERY unique skill that requires a different style of management than standard management.
I also hold an MBA with a specialization in project management, which tied in wonderfully with my stage manager experience. It also exemplified the difference in management styles. I use this degree the most for Thinklings. Since I have all the training for starting a business, and knowledge of business requirements, I am able to help keep The Three Fates (as they are so lovingly called in our About Us page) on track for the boring stuff regarding owning and operating a business.
Where do you live?
I grew up in a military family, so I have lived all over the country (12 states and 24 homes, last time I counted) but I have finally settled down in Orlando, FL, where my husband is currently employed as a manager at Disney World.
How did you join the Thinklings team?
I was lucky enough to get in on the ground floor with Thinklings. I started as Jeannie’s executive assistant in October of 2018. I was lucky enough to establish a strong relationship with her, which translated into the business seamlessly.
Who is one of your biggest role models?
This is a tough one for me to answer because my mom and dad have both been huge influences on me as far as role models go. My father, however, never ceases to amaze me. He is an active learner and I love having new enlightening conversations with him and learning with him. I am very similar in personality, and I get it directly from him. When I want to know how to do something, I will research until I am able to figure out how to achieve what I am trying to achieve. Similarly, my mother also is an active learner, and when she gets engrossed in a topic she goes all the way down the rabbit hole! So I guess they are both my role model for the same reason: Never stop learning, never stop growing, and never let anyone tell you that you can’t do something.