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YPWA Member Spotlight April 2023

Updated: Nov 4, 2023

Are you job searching? The odds are good that you are. According to a recent report by, 96% of workers are job searching this year! As a networking and development group, the connections you find with us could be an excellent person to meet up with for a WooSox game and a link to a future fantastic job!

Whether you are actively seeking a new role, a change, or a better experience in your current job, we're checking in with YPWA member Tracy Rodwill, a local HR professional. She's sharing some great tips for interviewing and her thoughts on connecting with HR. She also drops some excellent time and boundary management actions! So let's get to know her.

Member Details

Name: Tracy Rodwill

Pronouns: She/her

Hometown: Auburn, Massachusetts

When did you move to the Worcester area: Born and raised in Central Mass!

A fun fact about yourself: I love to cook. I do it to unwind and relax. I enjoy the challenge of trying new recipes and sharing my love through food.

Local Recommendations/ Hot Takes

Favorite shopping spot: Ed Hyder’s Mediterranean Marketplace. The food and goods are fantastic. The family who own and run the shop are so kind and amazing. I love to shop locally whenever I can!

Favorite spot to bring your family in the city: My family is big fans of the Ecotarium! We have a membership and go at least 1-2x per month.

Best season to be in Worcester: All seasons! We are so lucky to truly have all 4 seasons in Worcester! There is always something to do regardless if it's 75 and sunny or 32 and snowy!

An evergreen reminder: be yourself!

Favorite YPWA event you’ve attended: I loved the holiday even at WAM this past December. Great way to mingle and enjoy some beautiful art.

Do you have any tips for networking during our events? Just be yourself. When yourself, you are the most genuine form of who you are and people appreciate and value genuineness. It can be hard to talk to strangers, so I always commend those who go to networking events and put themselves out there. That’s courageous!

Time and boundary blocking

Occupation: Human Resources Manager at New England Business Media

New England Business Media is the parent company to Worcester Business Journal, Hartford Business Journal, New Haven Biz and Maine Biz. I provide HR support to all 4 publication hubs.

What do you enjoy most about your current role? My current role is part-time! I started this job after the birth of my second son Donovan in May of 2022. I love being part-time. It's the best of both worlds. Time for my career, and more time for my family.

How did you get started? I happened to fall into HR, it wasn’t something I sought out. I was promoted into the role of HR Assistant at Reliant Medical Group after being a medical secretary for 4 years there. I worked in the HR department for 4 more years.

What’s your favorite tip that makes work life easier for you? Block time on your calendar to do your work. When recruiting I have dedicated times blocked off on my calendar to do so. I do this so if my week is busier than usual or things happen unexpectedly. I have time scheduled to focus on the task without distractions or meetings piling up.

What is a boundary that you’ve set for yourself to help manage a work/life balance? I do not answer emails or calls after hours unless it is a true emergency. I have 2 small children and a husband at home who deserves my time and attention without distractions during my non-working hours.

Connecting throughout the job lifecycle

What are 1-2 questions you wish you heard more from applicants? What’s the culture of the Company/department? What are the qualities you’re looking for in a candidate to fill this role? I see people often very focused on the salary before even willing to learn about the role. Yes money talks, but is a job worth doing if you make a lot of money but you hate the work you’re doing?

For managers, what’s your go-to recommendation to build trust with team members? To be open to criticism. Give your team a safe space to be open with you about concerns or provide feedback. Also - to always make your team members feel valued. A simple thank you note acknowledging something someone did goes a long way!

What is your opinion on employees giving two weeks' notice? I think it's professional and appreciated. To me it's standard practice. You don’t ever want to burn bridges.

Are there any concerns you hear in exit interviews that you wish an employee could have shared with you before leaving their job? If a team member had issues with their managers. I always wish people came to me before it got to the point where they are leaving. I can’t solve all problems, but I’m willing to try! Often being in HR people feel that my role is to protect the company and management at all costs. My role as a HR professional is to ensure that the employer is providing a safe and professional working environment. I’m here to provide guidance and support regardless if you're the CEO or an team member who started 3 weeks ago.

Thank you, Tracy! We've got one more spotlight for the 22-23 season, and we thank all our outstanding members that have shared their experiences, tips, and love of the Worcester area with us this season!

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