Voices of Gratitude- Haley Zap

By: Haley Zap; Manager of Employer Engagement at NSS | Startup Ecosystem Builder #NashTech

In our series, Voices of Gratitude, some of our favorite local leaders tell us about how gratitude impacts their lives and how they share it with the people around them. This month, we interviewed Haley Zap, Manager of Employer Engagement at Nashville Software School. Haley is a prominent player in the growing tech scene here in Nashville. As a company that believes in the importance of acts of gratitude, we've invited Haley to tell us about maintaining relationships, feeling appreciated, and what she's most looking forward to. 

Could you tell us a bit about yourself?

Hey! My name is Haley, but most folks call me Zap. I'm originally from Iowa and now am a proud homeowner in the Bordeaux area of Nashville. I work at the nonprofit bootcamp Nashville Software School as the Manager of Employer Engagement where I connect with companies about hiring our junior developers, data analysts, and data scientists. My free time is spent training for triathlons, weight lifting, hanging out with my neighbors, and trying new restaurants around Nashville. 

What is your company’s background?

As the Manager of Employer Engagement at Nashville Software School, I have the opportunity each day to partner with employers about hiring our grads in software/web development, data analytics, and more. NSS has been operating as a nonprofit for a decade now with over 1800 graduates! At night, I am the founder of NashTech and working to build the startup community in Nashville. 

Why do you think gratitude is important? 

Gratitude keeps me present. As someone who constantly is thinking about what’s next, I fill out a daily gratitude journal to remind myself of everything I have right now. 

How do you use gratitude in your business life? 

People like working with happy people. 

What’s your best piece of advice for maintaining business relationships?
Find common ground. Don’t be transactional. 

How do you recognize that your work is appreciated? What actions from others make you feel most appreciated? 

By giving positive feedback! I am so grateful that my manager Amy is awesome at telling me positive feedback and supporting me. My love language is acts of service, so anyone who makes my life easier or feeds me makes me feel appreciated! 

How can others start integrating gratitude into their daily life? 

Start a gratitude journal or put it on your calendar to do a random act of kindness each week. 

How do you practice gratitude in your personal life? 

I budget to spend some money on my neighbors' kids each month so I always know that I need to spend it on a trip to bowling, a new bike, whatever they need. Looking out for someone else’s wants and needs keeps me gracious for what I have. 

What’s the best act of gratitude you’ve ever received? 

My neighbor's child, Isaiah, performed for me at my birthday party. 

What’s something you’re looking forward to? 

Spring warmth! 

What’s one thing you’re grateful for right now? 

The community I’ve been able to build in Nashville.