This month's spotlight is all about a member of the V-Soft family that brings positivity wherever he goes! Anyone who works with Shawn Wazyniak can vouch for his team-player attitude and willingness to go above and beyond in his role. We are thankful to have him as part of the V-Soft Family. Let's get to know Shawn a little bit better.
What is Your Title and How Long Have You Worked at V-Soft?
I am the Engineering Manager with V-Soft Infrastructure and have been with V-Soft just over a year. I was hired as an Engineer but have since been promoted to Engineering Manager and oversee our staff Engineers. That, however, is one of the many hats we all wear in the IS Division.
Describe your role at V-Soft
Infrastructure Engineering is more of an art than it is a profession. Like many roles in technology, we must stay on top of emerging technologies to stay ahead of the curve. My role at V-Soft merges the process of engineering qualified network transport systems with integrated technologies like Building Automation Systems, Intelligent Building Designs, Wireless, Network CCTV, Access Control, Audio/Video and more.
What I enjoy about my role is to take the “outside the box” thinking, pack it up real nicely, and toss it out the window. We don’t have a box. I want to enable each Engineer on our team, and anyone in our office for that matter, to exercise imagination and creativity to produce innovative and collaborative designs that don’t fit any mold. Same goes for conflict resolution and troubleshooting; if there’s already a standard, what do we have to strive for? Go big or go home, that’s why I am so grateful to have this opportunity.
What is The Best Thing About V-Soft?
Family!! I truly believe I can reach out to any of my team in the Cinci office or any of our other offices if I need assistance and they'll be there. This type of culture is the exception and most certainly not the rule in corporate America in 2020. I’m proud to be part of it and actually look forward and am eager to come to play each day. I would assume I should have said “come to work each day,” but that would’ve been inconsistent with what I actually believe. It's never work if you love what you do.
The V-Soft Infrastructure team with Mike Hoffmann in the Chicago office.
What is Something You're Proud to Have Accomplished at V-Soft?
This could be a lengthy list, but I am very proud of everything we have accomplished thus far. For one, the new Cincinnati office. Eric Holder had a vision of what the V-Soft IS Division should look like, we were given the opportunity to collaborate and the finished product is nothing short of incredible. Eric tasked me with the design of the new server room and, well, as many have seen, it is a show piece. We often have gatherings outside our doors where people stare at the server room in awe of what they see.
Something else I am proud of is developing professional relationships with people from all walks of life, and at V-Soft, this has happened tenfold. Not just my peers in this office, but customers that, unfortunately, had grown accustomed to the past, the mundane way things use to be done, but now are eager to work with us, text us on holidays, or take the time to reach out and offer thanks for projects completed as requested and over-delivered.
Any Interesting Stories in Your Line of Work?
One of my most favorite stories was when I was in Connecticut doing wireless survey at the Duracell R&D facility. The place was massive, well over 1.2 million square feet and I was tasked with designing a wireless solution for this place. Cool, right?
No, what was cool was on Monday morning, a local school had their entire student body of special education students bussed to this facility and they were all so excited to be there. The admin at the front desk knew all their names and directed them where to go. Long story short, Duracell brings in these kids everyday to test their products. I was in awe of their generosity.
I have a daughter with Down Syndrome and two other children with special needs and sensory processing difficulties and know how important inclusion is in their lives. These kids were given flashlights, cameras, radios, iPod’s, Xbox controllers, if it took a battery, they had it. They walked around with a sponsor and played and tested these batteries. What’s better, the staff didn’t just jot the data down after the batteries died. They interacted and were personable. For 5 straight days, 5 different schools took part in this. In 20+ years, I still think back to this as being one of the most interesting projects I have ever had the pleasure in taking part in.
What Do You Enjoy Doing in Your Free Time?
When I am not designing or on the road working on a plethora of projects, my wife and I run Cub Scout Pack 464 and Scout Troop 452. All our children are involved in Scouting, we enjoy getting filthy dirty in the mud, camping, hiking, rock-hounding and digging for fossils, fishing and holy moly they love the water!
Shawn's wife and kids at the UC NICU handing out Angel Bags and Valentine cards.
As some of the others reading this will agree, having a spouse/partner with a Pinterest account can be very very dangerous. Lucky for me though, my wife tailors her “honey do” jar around my love for wood working. If you were to glimpse into my garashop, you would think I was sponsored by Dewalt Tools. We regularly have the scouts over and we build anything from bird houses, bird feeders, pinewood derby cars to wooden snowflakes and Christmas trees. Woodworking is a passion though and have enjoyed rebuilding most of my house with custom closets, an entire finished basement, murphy tables, shiplap, and more. Next up, back yard makeover!
Shawn's kids working on the snowflakes and Christmas trees in his garashop.
What’s a Fun Fact About Yourself?
I enjoy motivational speaking! Not many people know this about me but I thoroughly enjoy it. Not to mention, I like to have fun…lots of fun. The entire IS Office can vouch for that.
My wife and I also run a charity now known as Little Hearts Big Heroes to benefit premature babies. My son was born 12 weeks premature and was in the NICU for 80 days. I nearly lost him. But as you can see, he has recovered nicely and is a loud and proud 8 year old now. Derick is the "Big Hero" and my daughter is the Little Heart, as she was a 1999 graduate of the CICU at Children's Hospital.
Shawn's son was honored as a graduate of the University of Cincinnati Medical Center NICU for the grand opening of the new NICU.