Employee Spotlight: Meet Nolan Blake
Nolan Blake is a data analyst working with the Technology Governance, Risk, Compliance and Readiness team at WarnerMedia. As we continue to celebrate Autism Acceptance Month, Nolan shares a little bit about his career story, navigating his professional life with autism, and what he enjoys doing outside of the office.
What is your job at WarnerMedia and what kind of tasks do you perform for your job?
I am a Data Analyst for the TGRCR&PA team at WarnerMedia; TGRCR&PA stands for Technology Governance, Risk, Compliance & Readiness, which also includes Platform Assurance and Account Administration. My main role is to organize data that other team members submit to me to analyze. My job requires me to work on multiple tasks with changing priorities and have the ability to look for details and spot errors.
How did your journey start at WarnerMedia?
I started my journey by applying for a job at WarnerMedia with the help of an Agency (Integrate) that advocates for people on the Autism Spectrum and I was lucky to get hired on my very first official job interview. My first job here was working as a Data Analyst for the SAP Master Data System for Warner Bros. I took Users (Business Unit Leader) requests from the Master Data Hub and inserted the information into the SAP system. The experience and great people from that department lead me into getting the current position that I have today.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
I enjoy that my job has a variety of tasks from data analyzing (the majority of what I do), attending team meetings, researching helpful tech tools for the team, brainstorming, and talking to team members about the work. Some tasks can be a simple data clean up in Excel that can be completed quickly, while others require a more complex approach and can take quite longer to complete. Despite how easy or difficult the projects are, I always take great pride in my work and complete each job with high expectations for myself and the team.
Outside of work, what do you like to do for fun? Do you have any passion projects?
I enjoy solving puzzles (KenKen and Sudoku), watching movies and TV. When I’m able to go out of the house, I enjoy going to sporting events, traveling on vacation, and trying out new places to eat. I like doing statistics and demographics of stadiums, cities, sports leagues, and entertainment destinations.
April is Autism Acceptance Month. What would you say is probably the most common misconception people have about people on the spectrum?
A common misconception that people have is they might assume people on the Spectrum like to work alone and be isolated from others. Although it may be true for some, there are others including myself that would prefer to be in a social working environment: collaborating, socializing, and attending group meetings. A lot of people with Autism want to socialize and make friends just like everyone else.
How does living with autism contribute to who you are today?
Having Autism my whole life has given me a number of challenges, but I have been able to overcome them and push myself to be the successful person I am today. Throughout my life, I have learned valuable lessons that have shaped me into becoming wise, mature, and caring for others. Growing up with a brother, who is also on the Spectrum, has taught me that I need to be understanding and respectful of other people’s needs just like how I would want people to understand and respect me.
What would you say to a hiring manager are the additional benefits that a person on the spectrum can bring to a team?
There are quite a bit of benefits to hiring individuals on the Spectrum, but to name a few: people on the Spectrum can see things from a different point of view that others may not have thought of yet, can be honest and ethical with others, willing to take on additional challenges, and make sense of complex systems. People with Autism can be very dedicated and hardworking employees.
Is there’s anything else you’d like to share?
I didn’t understand the concept of the Autism Spectrum growing up, but over time I have learned to appreciate myself and realize it is OK that I might not be exactly like everyone else. I understand it is awkward for others, but I wish people would ask me about my Autism. I don’t mind talking about it, and think it could help others get to know me better.