Get to Know Our Speakers: An Interview with MS Office Guru Melissa Esquibel

August 30, 2013 Speaker Interviews  No comments

We here at Desktop Training Academy know the importance of being able to trust the ability of experts. It is with that in mind that we conducted the following interview with Office expert and trainer, Melissa Esquibel, to get to know her and her mission to inform working professionals better. Melissa is a technology consultant, coach, trainer, and speaker with over 25 years’ experience in the field. She frequently presents webinars for Desktop Training Academy.

What inspired you to want to teach others how to master using technology tools?

“Well, no matter what I was doing in my career, I never believed in “hoarding” knowledge. The more I could teach others, the more opportunities I might have to do something new, knowing there was always someone to take over. The process is rewarding. With office technology, the barrier between getting by and being proficient isn’t that high. I like watching people discover how smart they are.”


What would you say was the most rewarding experience you’ve had as an educator of business professionals?

“It’s hard to say. I get physically charged up every time someone says, “I GET IT!!” or “That’s going to save me hours and hours!!” That’s what I live for as a trainer.”


What experiences in your professional life made you so adept at explaining tech tools and language to those who aren’t technology professionals?

“Early on in my career as an EDP Auditor, I had to be sure my reports and findings were stated in ways that business unit personnel could understand what was wrong and how to fix it. I often found myself between the techies and the end-users trying to explain what the other group was really trying to say. I found out I was good at it and I loved doing it.”


Where do you see the importance of mastering Office applications going in the future?

“While advances may come, the Microsoft Office Suite is a mainstay of business operations. To master these applications is to be recognized as the can-do, go-to, get ‘er done person on the team. I don’t see that changing any time soon.”


How do you see your teaching efforts affect those you teach?

“I see them laugh. I see them learn. I see them growing in confidence.”


What do you think are the biggest challenges people face when confronted with needing to use technology?

“Confidence is the most important thing. It’s almost always confidence and not ability that separates someone from where they want to be. Change is a part of work life. People have become accustomed to change, even if they’re not a fan of it. They must be guided to discover just how smart they are and how capable they are of mastering the tools of their trade.”


In your experience, what is the value of being certified in Microsoft Excel?

“It definitely shortens the conversation in an interview. With certification there is an understanding of the level of ability. It is challenging to master all the tools required for certification. The process not only teaches specific skills, but teaches the certification candidate how to explore new skills.”


How would you characterize your time working with Desktop Training Academy?

“I’ve loved working with this organization! I’ve had the opportunity to be in front of hundreds and hundreds people and share information that I know will make their work lives easier. DTA really understands what people want to focus on and how to deliver it in a way that is accessible.”


What is your background and when/why did you become office certified?

“I originally became certified to stay competitive with my colleagues in the business. What I found was that positions, assignments and opportunities came looking for me, once I was certified. My MCT and MOS-Master certifications are a valuable asset. Studying for the exams always shows me something new that I then look forward to sharing with others. My early career was spent in EDP Audit Data Security and Internal Controls. I later specialized in Business Continuity Planning and carried the CBCP certification for several years. I’ve owned my own business since 2003.”


Melissa is passionate about technology education. If you would like to see her in action, she will be presenting the webinar, “Excel Dashboards: Instructor-Led Training to Present Data Like a Pro” on October 17.

For the marketers out there, she will also be presenting “Excel for Marketers: Laser-Focused Lab to Save You Time & Frustration” for Progressive Business Executive Education on September 9.

Melissa is super active online on her blog, Twitter and Facebook. Check her out!

Like hearing from Melissa? Leave your comments below; we’d love to hear from you.


Spread the word and share the knowledge!

Kevin – Desktop Training Academy.

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