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Meet the Speaker: Sheila Mendez of PNM Resources

Sheila Mendez Change Management Speaker
Sheila’s travel takes her Portugal!

Meet Sheila Mendez of PNM Resources. She is presenting on PNM’s Organizational Change Management Journey for Enterprise Asset Management at the upcoming Change Management for Utilities Conference this September in San Diego.


Q: Name, title, company?
A: Sheila Mendez, Senior IT Director, PPMO & Quality, PNM Resources (Public Service Company of New Mexico).

Q: Family, hometown, where you live?
A: I am a native New Mexican and have lived in this beautiful state that we call “the Land of Enchantment” all my life. I was born in Las Cruces and after high school, moved to Albuquerque to attend the University of New Mexico. There I played Division I volleyball for the Lady Lobos while earning my degree.

Q: What is your utility management experience?
A: I have worked for PNM Resources and its subsidiaries for 18 years.

Q: What do you like to do when you’re not working? Hobbies?
A: My motto is, “what I do for a living doesn’t define me, but rather how I live life does.” As an empty-nester, my boyfriend of five years and I love to travel and see the world. I have visited over 65% of the states in the USA and 14 countries. I am also a sports fanatic, who not only spectates, but enjoys playing soccer, volleyball, golf, tennis, and others.

Q: Where do you see Change Management in utilities in two years?
A: Change Management is talked about but more awareness and recognition of its value is needed. Utilities are facing a variety of demands. These include environmental regulations, deployment of disruptive technologies, and the demand for for distributed generation. Expenses are reduced and employees are often asked to take on more responsibilities without sacrificing quality. Change management will be a vital practice to help employees stay engaged and transition from one culture to another.

“Live and love life to its fullest, carefully balancing what is required of me with what I cherish.”

Q: What is your biggest challenge?
A: Currently it is justifying why our IT department and projects delivered would gain value with an FTE for change management.

Q: What did you do prior to working in your current role?
A: Prior to this role, I was the director of IT Account Management. For five years I led a group of account managers and business analysts who provided consulting, strategic, and liaison services with each business unit within corporate and company subsidiaries.

Q: Who are a couple of your role models (and why)?
A: A former CIO at PNM Resources demonstrated that he cared about this staff’s career paths and challenged them to extend beyond their comfort zone. He challenged me with assignments that would prepare me for the next career role and broaden my knowledge of the utility as a whole. As I worked on high profile projects, mergers/divestitures, and developed the company technology strategy, he ensured I got exposure with the executive staff and board of directors and believed in giving credit to those who did the work.

Q: What is one of your biggest goals (in life or business)?
A: Live and love life to its fullest, carefully balancing what is required of me with what I cherish.

Q: What’s the biggest misconception you run into in your role (or what people seem to think about Change Management)?
A: Being in Information Technology, many times when we use the term “change management,” staff often think I am referring to ITIL change management (for code deployment). In addition, as change management is not regularly used in the company for projects, folks don’t often want to pay for the service because they don’t understand the direct correlation of the CM activities with the success of a project.

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