Introducing: Meet our Incredibles
Take a peek behind the curtain and get to know the diverse, passionate team of experts who help make incredible happen.
At CyberGrants, we strive to help our customers make an impact by scaling their giving programs and driving social change, but our mission would be vastly unattainable without our team of dedicated, passionate, and experienced CSR professionals. Just as the causes we help support cross boundaries and barriers, so do the talented individuals that drive our organization’s success. Spanning multiple backgrounds, heritages, and points of view, our diverse workforce brings innovative thinking, drives better solutions, and helps us more effectively serve clients.
The team at CyberGrants doesn’t just help your organization make incredible happen, our mission is an integral part of their personal lives as well. From coaching youth sports and volunteering at animal shelters to donating to causes they care about, giving back is in their DNA. To celebrate our diverse, inspiring team of experts, we’re eager to introduce Meet our Incredibles, a monthly spotlight that features the personalities of CyberGrants.
This week, we sat down with Client Manager at CyberGrants, Michelle Rikeman, to learn more about her growth within the company, the organizations she gives back to, and if she were famous, what it would be for.
Meet our Incredible Michelle Rikeman:
Introduce yourself! Tell us a little bit about you and your role at CyberGrants.
My name is Michelle Rikeman, I am 25 years old and I am currently enrolled at a local community college where I study business. This October will be my 3rd anniversary at CyberGrants! I started in the contact center, then I worked my way up to team leader, then supervisor, and now I’m in account management. At the contact center, I was responsible for training new hires, auditing for quality assurance, and supporting requests from nonprofits and our client’s donors by phone and email. In account management, we’re responsible for troubleshooting technical matters and assisting with configuration and data updates. I’m currently still in training mode for account management, but a typical day usually consists of several meetings to touch base with the team and with the clients that I own. I work through client tickets and escalations from the contact center and support my team with any questions that arise and vice versa.
What has been one of your favorite projects at CyberGrants thus far?
I have really enjoyed a lot of projects, but I’d say my favorite was working with onboarding. We recently had a project where we had to revamp a current client’s donor portal and I was excited to get to work with onboarding because we seldom worked with them when I was in the contact center. I wasn’t sure what exactly they do or how they worked so this was super helpful for me. Also, my proficiency in navigating the CyberGrants portal was advantageous so I hope that partnership continues in the future for other members of the contact center.
For this project, we revamped a customer’s existing dashboard because it was extremely outdated and they wanted to make it more streamlined to allow donors to more easily navigate the portal. To go about the revamp, I did a lot of comparisons. In doing so, I went to a donor portal that I was already comfortable with and that I knew that donors preferred. We did a lot in the contact center to communicate with donors and nonprofits, so I had a great understanding of what they were looking for and what they needed. This project mostly consisted of comparing pre-existing portals to our client’s dashboard and making recommendations for improvement. The client would then come back and confirm whether or not they liked the changes and we’d adjust accordingly. It was a big team effort, which was great!
What drew you to CyberGrants?
I honestly had never heard of CyberGrants before a co-worker at my previous job recommended that I apply for an open position. Her daughter was in the contact center and she had mentioned a job opening. I got an interview set up pretty quickly and did my best to find out as much as I could about CyberGrants. As a result, I went on the website and fell in love with the mission statement and company values and knew it was somewhere I wanted to work because I’d be making a difference. My previous job was in retail so it was going to be extremely different from what I was used to.
I’ve never worked for a company where the employees were uplifting like they are at CyberGrants. When I first got here, my teammates were so supportive and genuinely eager to help. I am big on asking questions so I asked probably a million of them during my training, but they were all more than happy to help me out and make me feel comfortable. CyberGrants has been such a wonderful company to work for.
What is a challenge you’ve had to overcome?
I think remote work has a lot of obvious advantages, but there have been quite a few downsides as well. I’m currently a student and take online classes so in conjunction with remote work, I’m pretty isolated and I don’t get a lot of face-to-face social interaction, which has been challenging for me. I miss going into work and getting to see my coworkers and friends in person.
However, remote work has also gotten a lot easier over the past year. I feel like we’re all becoming more accustomed to using Zoom or GoToWebinar and calling each other when there are issues or utilizing our internal messaging platform. Also, since I work remotely and attend online school, I feel that I have more time to myself and even to put in more work, due to not sitting in traffic during my commute—that’s been really nice. Sometimes going into a classroom— especially with people that you don’t know— can be kind of intimidating so participating online has definitely pushed me to be more involved and has boosted my confidence!
What are some causes or organizations that you like to give back to?
One of my favorite organizations is St. Jude Children’s Hospital. My mom was involved with them as well and it was sort of passed down to me. Their mission is incredible, and they cover the entire cost of treatment for the children who are patients there. Most hospitals don’t do that, and it’s really rare that you don’t get a bill after you return home from the hospital—I love that. I’m also extremely passionate about giving to animal shelters, food banks—especially with COVID, this was a big one for me— and then organizations that help with disaster relief like the Red Cross.
If you were famous, what would it be for?
Growing up I loved to play sports and especially enjoyed field hockey. I took a break between high school and college, but I was always confident that I would have played in college and possibly have received a scholarship for it. So if I was going to be famous for anything, it would definitely be for being a professional athlete. I could absolutely see myself doing that.