Team Talks: Sheila Williams
Palmetto Goodwill is proud to celebrate Black History Month! Join us this February, as we honor African American history and culture by sharing testimonials from a few of the many inspirational leaders who make up our organization.
This week’s Team Talk Spotlight is on Sheila Williams. She is an Employment Specialist III for Palmetto Goodwill Services.
What does Black History Month mean to you?
To me, it means we still have a long way to go because why do we have to resort to just a month? That’s what it means to me.
What is the moment in black history that influenced or shaped your career/life or that particularly resonates with you?
My maternal grandmother never learned how to drive. And I can recall times when my mother or my uncle would take her to work, she worked for a white family. I just remember her getting out of the car in this nice neighborhood, walking up the driveway, and she couldn’t go through the front door. This was in the ‘70s and she had to walk around the back. It didn’t mean anything to me then. But growing up, she worked in factories,and she told me one day “I did it, so you don’t have to.”
Coming through that, she did it with such grace to where we didn’t feel it. And it was not until I was older that I realized what it was. She would leave her house and go take care of someone else’s, so by the time she got home, she was exhausted. But she did it with such grace. And she loved those children that she was raising just as if they were in her home.
What advice do you have for people looking to start their careers or become leaders today?
Never get to the point where you stop learning and surround yourself with people who know more than you.
What motivates you to come to work each day?
I have a picture of the original Enclave, I used to job coach, and it’s just seeing those smiling faces. That’s what motivates me because of the struggles that my clients have. They come to work every day, so why can’t I with my creaking knees and my ankles popping. But, yeah, that keeps me coming.
What is your favorite mantra?
It’s my favorite scripture, Romans 8 and 28, and it reads “and we know that all things work together for the good, for those who love the Lord and those who are the card according to his purpose.” So, we know it’s going to work for our good. That’s what I live.
What is a fun fact about yourself?
Anyone who knows me knows they had better not fall in front of me. Don’t fall in front of me because I’m going to laugh. I can’t help you and I’m going to laugh. And I’m going to laugh every time I think about it. I’m honestly concerned, but I can’t help you. I’m serious.