Press.

Sunbit for everyone, everywhere — and now me

Medium

By Soo Hong

Sunbit Employees LaughingI turned 50 in 2021. I know it’s customary for women my age to keep that statistic under wraps. But I’m not a traditionalist; I believe deeply in authenticity, and frankly, in the midst of a pandemic, turning 50 is a beautiful gift. Too many didn’t.

But the true gift that 2021 brought me was time to reflect on the adventures and chapters in my life, the many people from whom I’ve learned, and with whom I’ve laughed, the mistakes I’ve made, and the lessons I take from them. Like many, I leaned into the Great Reassessment and got busy unpacking what really matters to me as I find my way in making a life, not just a living.

One of the outcomes of that process was that I joined Sunbit as its first Chief People Officer (CPO). I’m enormously grateful to be part of a movement that, at its core, creates a community of inclusion, learning, and a focus on getting things done.

Why Sunbit?

I’ve never worked in fintech before. And though I’d heard of buy now, pay later (BNPL), I‘d never used it. But I am the daughter of first generation immigrants and know what it can mean for a family when an unanticipated car repair or root canal means making really hard choices. I also understand the shame that comes with being declined or not having credit. That for a country built on the promise of opportunity, one-half of those who apply for credit don’t get it. Or if they do, it often comes with high rates that make it tough to ever recover. That doesn’t seem right. Because fundamentally, it isn’t.

I believe in working with organizations that make people feel seen. I’ve been the first head of people / HR leader at WeWork, Tinder, and National Veterinary Associates, where I’ve been privileged enough to be at the right place at the right time — getting the opportunity to help shape culture and create an environment where people can do their best work.

Sunbit, with all that it’s accomplished — from being crowned a unicorn and the go-to technology in 1 in every 3 auto dealerships across the nation, to being offered in 10,000+ locations across the United States — recognizes that while it’s experiencing hypergrowth, it can’t lose sight of its most important asset: its people.

What’s next?

I’m thrilled to be at Sunbit to help design and develop the People organization to make Sunbit one of the best places for people to develop in their careers. And regardless of how much or little time someone spends at Sunbit, they’ll share that it was an incredible place of community, learning, and support.

Ultimately, we want Sunbit to be a place known for our people and our talent. Our goal is to create a great place to work: where our culture (the “how”) is always aligned with our mission (the “why”). We’ll ensure that the right people are doing the right things at the right time, so that everyone can succeed. We’ll iterate and refine the way we work, so that everyone is set up to deliver their very best. And of course, we’ll keep that cycle going by developing a talent engine that’s focused on finding and developing great talent.

While we know that by bringing this vision to life, we’ll create a place for those who want to spend a big part of their careers here — and I know it’s unusual for a CPO to say this — I don’t expect that everyone is going to choose to stay at Sunbit for the entirety of their career journey. We’ll know that our People organization has succeeded when Sunbit is a place that other companies view as a leading talent engine; a calling card; when 10 years from now, Sunbit alums are innovating and leading and positively impacting the world. We’ll know when we celebrate the amazing things that our people do — and we’ll keep the porch light on when alumni want to come back.

Careers are journeys. My job is to make Sunbit one of the best places to spend it. Sunbit is for everyone, everywhere — and we’d love it if you’d join us.

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