By Bethany Good
Margaret Archer runs workforce development and business operations for Exelaration, an IT consulting and software engineering firm. Public and private clients hire them to develop or update custom software and ERP systems like ServiceNow. Her work includes orchestrating the programs – grants, recruiting, onboarding, curriculum including technical and soft skills resourcing projects, schedules, etc.
Margaret truly believes in the work that they are doing. “We are passionate about helping others get into this industry. There’s a massive shortage of software talent, so we hire university students and adult career changers and teach them to be professional software engineers,” she says.
“For any company that wants to find solid software engineer hires with a tremendous drive to succeed, we have some people you can employ without recruitment fees!”
Tech and business aren’t everything for Margaret. One day she would love to open a small flower garden business – selling flowers and designing/selling potted arrangements for homes. She’s also willing to help anyone looking to beautify their outdoor space. “If you need potted arrangements for your porch, patio, or around your yard, I can help!”
Having just returned to the areas, she hopes to volunteer for some girls in technology groups someday. She would also love to serve on a board; (if anyone knows of opportunities, let her know).
Why we love Margaret
We are so happy to have Margaret as part of the Cowork Frederick family. She is kind, intelligent, and always willing to help others. We love hearing her stories about living in New Zealand. Her passion for career training and development is infectious, specifically her drive to bring more women into the technology field.
Q&A with Margaret Archer
What inspires you and keeps you going?
I’m in pursuit of a calmer life. My husband and I have traveled so much that we can’t wait to stop moving. My purpose is to live a serene and peaceful life, and I’m working on our house to make it a sanctuary.
At work, the learners in our programs are inspirational and keep me going. There is no better satisfaction than seeing former learners being promoted on LinkedIn. We love when they come back to work for us because they want to give back the opportunity we gave them.
Life is short. I know this. In 2011 I got a wake-up call when I had a brush with breast cancer. I’m trying to make the best of it and not take anything for granted. Even if you think you don’t have cancer, you should get checked. Do it now because tomorrow may change everything. This is one of the reasons why I felt comfortable moving around the world for love.
Cowork Frederick members tend to be a little unconventional. How does that apply to you?
For a long time, I was in a typical working arrangement- commuting an hour each way and always worried about traffic. When I moved to New Zealand in 2019, I had to quit my job because my company wasn’t open to someone working remotely overseas. COVID changed that all. My old boss hired me for his new company in 2021, and I worked remotely for him from NZ for almost a year before transitioning to England and then the US.
On a more personal success track, I’ve traveled a lot. So many people have said to me, “Why come back to the US?” Over the years, I’ve learned that having beautiful surroundings is not enough. I encourage traveling to discover what your priorities in life are. Every place and governmental system has pros and cons, and that knowledge broadens your view.
Which of the guiding values defined by Cowork Frederick members speaks to you?
I’ll go for Generosity and Resilience. My company, colleagues, and I are generous with our time and knowledge for our learners. Creating this program doesn’t make us much money. We give so much of ourselves. We do it because we love seeing others grow. Our learners are super-resilient, and they want to make the most of opportunities. Some of our learners are full-time college students, others are retail workers, uber drivers, and veterans – and despite the challenges in their lives, they’re working hard to make a difference in their careers. They are inspiring.
Any tips for getting into the technology field?
Are you thinking of getting into tech? I recommend doing some homework. There are countless free and low-cost learning opportunities in areas you might be interested in. We hire people like you who have done their homework and have a passion for the industry. I’m happy to talk about this to anyone!
As a business owner, you need to learn from your mistakes. We opened our second office too quickly. We had an employee in North Carolina who wanted to open an office there, but we didn’t have the volume of consistent, long-term client work to sustain it with staff and engineers. In the end, we moved the employee to a coworking space that they love.
Why Cowork Frederick?
Coworking provides more structure to my days and an in-person social component. With too many days at home, it is too easy to go off the rails. I have a comfortable and friendly environment to work here with quiet and social spaces. Plus, the people are great too! Absent a good big monitor, the space is perfect for me.
For those who want to learn more, how can you be reached?
Facebook: Search for email@example.com
About the author:
Bethany Good is a prolific poet, creative writer, author, and storyteller. In 2019 she finally found the role she was meant to play when she became the Founder, CEO, and “Head Wordsmith” of Good Writing Co., which provides copywriting, brand voice consultation, digital marketing, creative storytelling, and other content writing services. Bethany is a dedicated wife and mother of two elementary-aged children. In her limited free time, she enjoys cuddling with her new Boston Terrier puppy, Scout, as well as gardening, hiking, and telling neighborhood kids to get off her lawn.