What is EdgeConneX Salutes 2022?
As part of our continuing mission of honoring and recognizing our amazing veteran employees, EdgeConneX, in partnership with Salute Mission Critical, launched EdgeConneX Salutes 2022. As a longtime partner of EdgeConneX, Salute uniquely addresses our critical infrastructure facility management needs. Salute’s skilled veteran labor force works alongside our EdgeConneX teams, which include dedicated and hard-working veterans like Mason Conner. We are proud to share Mason’s experience with you. Please read his Q&A below to learn more.
Mason Conner, Regional Manager West Coast at EdgeConneX and an Air Force veteran, was interviewed to learn more about his background and his experience transitioning into a civilian role within the data center industry. Mason also shared his hobbies and what inspires him the most.
What are your job responsibilities now?
I ensure all customer SLA requirements are met and maintained, manage a team of highly skilled engineers, and work with our computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) and other systems to ensure they are up to date and have the correct information. Additionally, I effectively manage, supervise, and evaluate contract technical labor; identify areas of improvement to our existing facilities, particularly efficiency and PUE; evaluate and improve the security of data center facilities; conduct routine, ongoing assessment of the building systems operations; ensuring compliance with all safety procedures as well as utilization of protective equipment.
What geo are you in now?
Tell me about your background/why did you enter the military?
After high school, I was lost about what my next steps would be. The military provided me with an option for higher learning and great trade skill. I decided to join the Air Force when I was 21.
What was your role/responsibility in the military?
I was a machinist/welder my first 4 years when I was on active duty. After my first 4 years, I transferred to Power Production/ Generator Technician. I carried this role for another 5 years. As a Metals Technician, I would repair aircrafts that were damaged in battle and machine all parts necessary for our aircraft and aerospace ground equipment. As a Power Production Technician, I would work on generators at my local base by ensuring all preventative maintenance and scheduled work was completed, and that the generators were always operational. When deployed, I would oversee the power plant and attend to the generators onsite to ensure we had continuous power without interruptions in order to maintain the mission with no delays.
Tell me a story from your military service. What did you learn from that experience?
When I was deployed in Africa, we had a hose line inside one of our generators spring a leak, and we had no ability to get another one at our location for 3 months. After 3 days of searching through old vehicles and equipment, I found a hose from an old truck that we somehow made work and got the generator back online. This a good example of just how resourceful you can be when you have no other options.
How did the military prepare you for the job/role/career you are in now?
The military taught me a lot, and it’s tough to categorize one main skill. I think the most important skill that I acquired was how to get along with anyone and focus on getting the job done no matter what. I was also very shy and not confident, and the military showed me that with hard work, you can accomplish your goals.
How was your experience transitioning from the military to the civilian workplace?
My transition was difficult. It’s hard to turn from the military, where everything is laid out in front of you, to a situation in the civilian sector where every person fights for him or herself. The hardest adjustment for me was determining my worth and how to scale my skillset against others when looking for work and determining wages, benefits, etc.
Was there anything that would have made that transition better or easier?
I think the military has a great transition program. A lot of the difficulties that I faced were just experience issues that you need to go through to learn how to face them. A better understanding from employers of the mindset of people who have only been in the military might help alleviate some of the stress of the onboarding process.
Explain the transition from military to working at EdgeConneX.
My transition to EdgeConneX has been amazing, and I have met so many amazing people. I have rarely worked for companies where there is little to no workplace drama, and EdgeConneX excels in that way. I would like to shout out to Mark Taylor and Frank Dicks who are amazing people and honestly have made working for EdgeConneX fun. They are not just great teammates, but I consider them close friends as well.
What would you like to tell others thinking about a career in the data center industry?
I would tell anyone else who is interested in the data center industry to jump in. There is so much value and need in this industry. Be prepared to be met with new challenges every day, but also great people that will help you along the way. The data center industry is the best thing that has ever happened to me, and I would recommend it to anyone else.
What would you like to tell people that are thinking about working for EdgeConneX?
Nike says it best “Just do it” — you will not regret it. EdgeConneX is simply the best company I have ever worked for. I love my job and the people I get to surround myself with. No matter what position you choose, I would highly recommend EdgeConneX as an employer.
What does EdgeConneX culture of Customers, People, Planet mean to you?
“Customers come first” — has always been the motto of companies that want to impress clients and pull in customers. EdgeConneX is one of a few companies that truly put that motto into practice. Our customers are simply the most important aspect of our industry. EdgeConneX does an exemplary job of putting customer needs above everything else, which shows in our daily operations.
What are your hobbies/interests?
Some of my hobbies are fitness, gaming, camping, and spending quality time with family and friends. I would like to get into bodybuilding someday, but as for now, I am more into fitness.
What inspires you the most?
What inspires me is the fact that EdgeConneX has provided me with great training and the ability to pass on my knowledge to train other employees and watch them grow in their careers. My past experience has shown me that this is not the norm. I appreciate leadership allowing me to be successful in my endeavors at EdgeConneX.
How can our readers follow you online?
Keep an eye on EdgeConneX career openings HERE.
If you are a veteran or military spouse looking for an exciting career in a growing industry, please contact Salute Mission Critical. The team can help train and put you on the path to success.