umair virani
commercial account manager, houston

What is your current role? How long have you worked for Monument? 

I am a Commercial Account manager for the Houston area. I was hired into the Houston plant in 2008 as a contractor. I was fresh out of school with a degree in chemistry, and the site was newly part of the Monument family. I did shift work for about five years, and was eventually offered a role as Lab Manager, followed by a Quality Manager role, where I served as a liaison between the customer and the plant. When my current role popped up as an opportunity, I thought it would be a great fit for me – and fortunately, so did the leadership team!

What is your favorite part of what you do?

I love the problem-solving aspect of my job. Customers come to us with their toughest issues, and we work together across Monument functions to deliver solutions that usually surprise them. (And sometimes, we identify additional issues that our customers didn’t even know were holding them back!) I love the frequent opportunities to “wow” customers – whether I’m relaying a great new solution that makes them happy, or giving a site tour, which always generates great feedback about how clean and organized our facilities are.

What do you like to do in your spare time?

I’m getting married in October, and fortunately, as a guy, I mostly need to make sure that I wear what I’m supposed to and show up where I’m supposed to – and of course, support my fiancée through the stress of wedding planning!

I love being outdoors – everything from hiking to canoeing and kayaking to just watching the sun go up or down. I also enjoy travelling, which is a good thing, since my role requires me to travel quite a bit. My favorite place to travel for work is the Northeast U.S., as there are so many cities with a huge range of sights to see. When I travel for pleasure, I seek out places where the hiking is great; Austin has some fantastic trails, and Big Bend National Park in west Texas is one of my favorite places to experience the beauty of nature.

What is the most surprising thing about you?

People always seem surprised that I’ve been at Monument for 11 years. I was lucky to be here from the very beginning – and to see the amazing transformation that has occurred over those years.

People are also surprised when they find out that I can (at times) be a couch potato – especially because I have such high energy most of the day. I’m addicted to playing games on my smartphone. That time allows me to zone out and recharge my brain. I definitely believe in working hard, playing hard – and relaxing with the same level of commitment!