“Ladies shouldn’t be afraid to try technical roles and be surrounded by gentlemen. They respect and support me and I bring a different perspective to the role. It’s a lot easier for me to get that first critical appointment and once I get that foot in the door, sometimes that’s all it takes!”
A native of Rock Hill, SC, Tania earned her degree in mechanical engineering from Clemson University. She was hired by Cross straight out of college. At the time, her hiring manager remarked that she was one of the first engineers he knew who had also taken sales classes. Tania started in the Territory Manager training program, which meant she traveled constantly, working with inside sales, other account managers and vendors to learn the role.
Eventually, a territory opened up and Tania moved to Winston-Salem where she sold hydraulic power units. When Cross acquired the Numatics product line, she moved to the pneumatic sales team which sat within the fluid power group at the time. Three years later, she moved to the Raleigh area, taking a territory which went all the way to the coast. Tania was extremely successful in her territory, with consistent year over year growth and, after the largest ever order for pneumatics, she was the Cross President’s Award winner in 2002.
She had her first child in 2006 and another three years later. After noticing that her son was far happier with her than with the nanny, she chose to leave Cross to raise her children. Now that her kids are teenagers, Tania returned to Cross Automation. “They don’t need me as much any more and it’s really fun to be back in the field,” she said. “It was a challenge coming back into the workforce during covid but it was a good fit.”
Tania is still working with pneumatics and all of precision motion control,which now sits within the Automation Group. She’s calling on OEMs and integrators in the Tidewater region and the I-95 corridor, from Virginia to the tip of Georgia. “Cross has always been very supportive. If I need something, I generally get it. It’s very much a team environment, whatever is good for the company is good for us.”
Her manager, Wade, commented on Tania: “My memory of Tania was as a peer in our pneumatic sales team. I saw her as tenacious and smart. If she got a sniff of an opportunity she was relentless in going after it. She also seemed to have great relationships with her customers. She contacted me directly when she decided to get back into the job market. It was a “no brainer” to me to have her join my team. And she has picked right back up where she left off. She has excellent sales skills to go along with very high technical aptitude. It is a killer combination.”
Reflecting on being a woman in a male dominated industry, Tania said “Ladies shouldn’t be afraid to try technical roles and be surrounded by gentlemen. They respect and support me and I bring a different perspective to the role. It’s a lot easier for me to get that first critical appointment and once I get that foot in the door, sometimes that’s all it takes!”