Meet Gina Meadors Crouch, MarketSource’s Woman of the Week

In honor of Women’s History Month, we’re sharing stories of some of the women in our midst who are making a difference in others’ lives at MarketSource and beyond.

Our final Woman of the Week is Gina Meadors Crouch, Program Manager for MarketSource’s largest automotive program. Successful in a male-dominated field, Gina has found the secret to being an effective leader while staying true to herself. Here’s her story

Gina Doesn’t Do Anything Halfway

Q: How did you get to where you are in your career?

A: After I earned my degree from UGA in marketing and sales, my first job was selling homes with Pulte Homes. I enjoyed guiding people through the difficult process of making a huge purchasing decision. After that, I came across Allegis sister company TEKsystems at a career fair, where I started as an IT staffing recruiter. I found it so fulfilling to help people find work. Shortly thereafter, I was promoted to sales. I moved to MarketSource in 2013 as a recruiting manager. In 2017, I had an opportunity to join the automotive recall leadership team, which tracks down customers with outstanding—potentially life-threatening—recalls and facilitates or completes the repairs. We also piloted a staffing program for a global automotive OEM. The natural progression of that program involved my role being phased out. On what was supposed to be my last day with MarketSource, another OEM signed a contract for recall services—a team that I now lead. I’m a program manager for the largest MarketSource automotive program. It’s highly rewarding work to know that your efforts could be saving lives.

Q: Have you had any mentors?

A: Not formally, but there certainly have been several women who’ve influenced my career. I’ve long admired my colleagues, Lauren Robinson and Lisa Walsh. They’ve been important role models for me, and I’ve learned so much from how they’ve handled themselves and the challenges they’ve faced. I’ve often said that I want to be Lauren when I grow up!

Q: Have you run into any obstacles that you attribute to being a woman?

A: I used to hear that I was too nice, and I think that perception held me back at some points in my career. There were also times when I tried to change who I was to overcome that perception and meet others’ expectations of me, but I eventually figured out that I could still be myself and get business done. I discovered that being upbeat, friendly, and warm-hearted doesn’t mean you’re not tough or can’t have difficult conversations. I may have matured into a stronger female leader with experience, but my core personality and nature haven’t changed, nor should they. You can treat people with kindness, respect, and ‘be nice’ in any situation—even when being direct and giving tough feedback or constructive criticism. In fact, I think those things are assets. I’ve even had people thank me at the end of a tough conversation because they felt honored and respected.

“Being upbeat, friendly, and warm-hearted doesn’t mean you’re not tough or can’t have difficult conversations.”

I’ve also had to master the art of balance. I’m a mom to two young kids—a nine-year-old daughter and a six-year-old son, and I want to be there for them. The more my leadership role grew, the more I discovered I needed to guard my time. Being promoted to a program manager position required me to travel. I was extremely leery of and concerned about the impact travel could have on my family. So, I sought advice from other women who traveled for work, who really helped me see a way I could make it work. But the best advice I received was from my husband, who said, “Try it! The worst case is we’ll find out it’s not for you, and then you can look for something else. Taking the risk with the promotion wasn’t just worth it—it actually forced me to bring much-needed balance to my life. I’ve had to learn to set boundaries around my travel. I’ve also learned how to bucket my time and ask people when they need things from me rather than assuming I need to drop what I’m doing the minute I receive a request from someone.

Q: How does being a woman shape how you approach your professional role?

A: The automotive field tends to be male-dominated, so I’m extra proud to contribute to women in leadership in this vertical. And as a mom, it’s important to me for my daughter to see me interact with my team, to see how hard I work, to hear about my successes and failures, to hear me tell people NO,” and to see me take chances. As both a mom and woman, I want to help the next generation of women. I’ve read the articles about how women say, “I’m sorry too much and that women don’t apply for a job they want unless they’re 100% qualified for it, versus men, who apply when they meet just 60% of the qualifications. We must change that, one woman at a time!! I make it a point to undo those bad habits for myself and to be the best version of me I can as a woman, wife, mom, and professional. My client contact is a woman, too, which is neat. We have a great relationship.

Q: What’s something people would be surprised to know about you?

A: I love to fish! I grew up fishing with my dad, and we’ve done a couple of deep-sea fishing trips together, including one to Cabo San Lucas, where I caught several sailfish and marlin. My daughter Charlie Kate, my mini-me, has the same touch I do and can catch her own fish!

“Be intentional. But don’t overthink.”

Q: What advice would you have given your younger self about being a women in leadership?

A: Try to be intentional about everything you do. Also, don’t overthink things you say or repeat and analyze them in your head once the moment has passed. Who cares?!? Move on! We all say something dumb occasionally, and only you will give it a second thought. Torturing yourself over your mistakes doesn’t help you. In fact, it holds you back. Both men and women do this, but I hear from so many women who beat themselves up in their head. STOP IT! It takes practice to tame that doubting self-talk, but I promise it’s a game-changer for both your professional and personal life.

Q: What professional experience has shaped you the most?

A: We conduct quarterly business reviews (QBR) with every client. I recall one QBR I worked so hard on that led to the client asking for us to deliver a proposal to extend their contract. There were 18 people working on this program, and all their jobs were on the line if the client decided to wind down our engagement. In that moment, I knew I had stepped fully into my role as a program manager and that everyone on my team was going to get to keep their jobs. I still get chills thinking about that experience.

Gina began her career selling new homes for Pulte Homes. She found her way to the Allegis family through TEK Systems in IT staffing, recruiting, and sales. With MarketSource since 2013, where she initially worked as a recruiting manager, she is now the Program Manager for MarketSource’s largest automotive program. Gina lives in Alpharetta, Georgia with her husband and two children. She has a bachelor’s degree in marketing and sales from the University of Georgia. She loves to take yoga and Zumba classes and spend time with family and friends.