Based in the Philippines, Kat Santos is mid-way through SOAR, our 18-month management trainee program for university graduates to develop leadership skills working with teams across Community Operations, our team supporting all-things customer care.
“I’ve had the best time meeting and working alongside a ton of smart and amazing folks at Uber…I’m grateful for leaders and colleagues I’ve connected with who continue to expand my ways of thinking and open doors for me which has been a key driver in my growth,” explains Kat below.
You joined Uber as a SOAR management trainee. Tell us more about the program.
“The Strategy, Operations, Analytics Rotational (SOAR) Program is Uber Community Operations‘ 18-month management trainee program in the Philippines and Taiwan. Community Operations is Uber’s customer care network providing support to all customers. Every 6 months, we get to join a different team within Community Operations to gain exposure and experience on a variety of exciting work ranging from program management, strategy development, process optimization, and data analytics (to name a few). After 18 months, program graduates have the opportunity to join Uber in a permanent team!
While I’m based in Manila, SOAR enables me to meet and collaborate with Uber leaders and colleagues across the globe. In my current role with Digital Experience, it’s been amazing working closely with both teams in APAC and global stakeholders in the United States. Beyond our day-to-day, SOAR gives us the opportunity to join regular fireside chats and networking events with Uber leaders. We have a ton of fun during our quarterly Timeout Thursdays (we’ve done a painting class and escape room!), and travel out of town as a cohort every 6 months to celebrate the end of our rotations.”
What have you learned about yourself through SOAR?
“I’ve discovered my superpower for building and managing relationships with leaders and peers. I genuinely enjoy getting to know people on a personal and professional level. It helps build camaraderie and rapport, especially in a world where many of us are working together online. I’m so grateful that the leaders and colleagues I’ve connected with continue to expand my thinking and open doors for me which has been a key driver in my growth.”
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve received from someone at Uber?
“There’s too many to mention! I’ve had the best time meeting and working alongside a ton of smart and amazing folks at Uber. The best advice that has been top of mind for me is to learn how to thrive in ‘chaos’. In other words to Go get it. Life at Uber has been dynamic and fast-paced as we’re operating in an environment that is changing constantly. Our Strategy & Operations Lead and Senior Community Operations Manager taught me the importance of embracing a growth mindset, adapting quickly, and remaining composed under pressure. Moreover, my current managers have instilled in me to use my strengths, be comfortable navigating ambiguity, and they constantly enable me to take on new challenges which helps me achieve my fullest potential.”
Any memorable moments to share from SOAR?
“Our SOAR cohort went to La Union, a surf town 5 hours away from the Manila office, to celebrate the end of our first rotation. After a long day of hiking to the waterfalls and playing football, a few of us stayed up so late playing games and chatting about life that we were able to catch the sunrise by the beach.”
Any advice for those applying for an internship or new graduate role with Uber?
“Solidify your why: Reflect on what you want out of your experience and how it aligns with how you envision your career. Make sure you prepare well so you’ll be able to convey this throughout the recruitment process!”
“Connect with people from Uber: Take the time to have an in-person or virtual coffee chat with people from Uber! Be intentional about getting to know them. Ask for insight into their career journey, figure out if it aligns with how you envision your first (or next!) career move, and don’t be scared to ask for advice.”
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