TEAM Employee Owner Profile: Rick Gray
Senior Quality Assurance Analyst, Frequent Traveler, Photo Booth Guy
We are introducing you to some of our employee owners so you can learn more about their roles at TEAM and what motivates them professionally and personally. After all, what better way to find out about what it’s like to be a TEAM employee owner than going directly to the source?
Rick Gray brings vast product knowledge, diverse life experience and an energetic personality to his role as a Senior Quality Assurance Analyst at TEAM Software. That might sound like a perfect role for a soft-spoken introvert, but, he’s actually a self-described goofball who loves to make people smile. Whether he’s busy testing software solutions at TEAM during his day job or running his family-owned DJ and photo booth company in his not-so-free time, Rick brings his genuine interest in others to everything he does. If you’ve attended TEAM Client Conference, you’ve probably seen (and visited) Rick and his photo booth at one of our evening events.
At TEAM, Rick focuses on testing new software features and enhancements to ensure quality and usability before it’s released to clients. He also provides input on new product design and serves as a support expert on the development team that delivers enhancements to customers. Rick has been the backbone of the quality assurance team for more than a decade, so he understands how clients use TEAM’s solutions and helps translate those needs to the software developers. Most recently, Rick helped launch the updated TeamTime Messaging capabilities. During the development process, he lobbied for specific features he knew would be vital to clients. You can thank Rick for the ability to include follow-up questions and use templates in the TeamTime Messaging enhancement.
“I work on a collaborative team that welcomes feedback,” Rick said. “So, we are able to build on suggestions and make a better product for clients.”
Before coming to TEAM, Rick was in the Air Force for 20 years. During that time, he met his future wife, proposing just a week after meeting her. Twenty-eight years later, they have two children and one grandchild, so he clearly knew what he was doing. An avid traveler, Rick proudly says his favorite places to travel are in Nebraska, and he has likely seen more of the state than even most native Nebraskans, despite growing up in California and having lived across the globe. When they have a free weekend together, Rick and his wife pull up a map with a 200-mile radius from their home, close their eyes, point to a spot on the map, and go there.
When he’s not traveling, Rick spends his weekends running his DJ and photo booth business with his wife and daughter. With the success of the family business, Rick has been able to donate his photo booth services to charitable causes in the area, like the local Make-A-Wish chapter. Rick also plans to take advantage of TEAM’s new Volunteer Time Off (VTO) program as another way to give back to the community. He appreciates the fact that TEAM allows employee owners time off each quarter to participate in volunteer opportunities that are meaningful to them.
As a more seasoned employee owner at TEAM, Rick loves getting to work with a group of young developers who embrace his experience while helping him learn from their fresh perspective. “It’s a two-way learning street, and everyone is better off for it,” said Rick. “TEAM has an open environment that encourages collaboration and open conversation, and that results in better products.”
Rick’s genuine interest in people is evident when he reflects on the standout moments of his career at TEAM. He notes TEAM Client Conference and the quality face time he gets with clients at that annual event. His favorite part of the conference is the luncheons where he gets to sit down and have in-person conversations with clients to connect and learn more about them.
“We always want to do more for our clients,” said Rick, “and it helps getting to know them on a personal and professional level at events like TEAM Client Conference.”
Rick with several clients at TEAM Client Conference 2018