Throughout her varied career, Megan Cardish has prioritized one goal, no matter the industry or job: to learn as much as she possibly can. After she graduated from college and started working for a real estate developer – an experience she said felt like drinking from a fire hose – she endeavored to learn about all aspects of the industry, from business to architecture and construction.
In that role she traveled the country every week soaking in as much as she could, and after three years she wanted a change in pace. She took a job at a financial institution and started from scratch learning as much as she could about the industry until she sought out another change that led to her current position as an account manager at Secure Network Technologies. In this role she strives to not only be an expert in cybersecurity but about the industries she serves, as well – a challenge she embraced right away.
“This has been a whole new world – I didn’t know much about IT or cybersecurity, but in the first week after I started, I came home and changed all my WiFi, passwords and security measures in my house based on what I’d already learned,” she said. “The engineers here have trained me, and I’ve taken cybersecurity courses, but I really enjoy working with clients and helping them protect their networks and company.”
In her role as account manager, Cardish connects with clients to learn more about their cybersecurity needs and explains from start to finish how Secure Networks can help their organizations, from methodology to the importance of penetration assessments and what happens in response to a cybersecurity incident.
“Overall, there was a learning curve,” Cardish said. “What I had to do on a daily basis was ask a lot of questions and sit in on a lot of calls. I worked tirelessly with engineers to understand the value of our service, especially because we don’t really provide a product but a report on the security posture of a client’s network.”
Even with her success at Secure Networks so far, Cardish said that she’s looking forward to continuing to grow her knowledge by taking cybersecurity, leadership, and networking courses while also immersing herself in the verticals the company serves. She’s especially interested in the material handling industry, which she started working with through a connection established by her boss. She said she’s eager to learn how Secure Networks can help the companies served by MHEDA advance their networks and be aware of cybersecurity, and will be attending MHEDA’s 2022 Convention.
“I’d like to immerse myself in MHEDA, get to know clients and members so I can understand what everyone is working toward and how everyone works together,” Cardish said. “Cybersecurity and the material handling industry definitely intersect, and I’m excited to explore how they interact.”
As she strives to be a leader both in the cybersecurity space and a valuable resource for MHEDA members, she said her advice for anyone looking to grow as a leader in their industry is to step out of their comfort zone.
“Whether I was working in real estate, the financial industry or cybersecurity, I was willing to learn, and that’s what’s really helped me,” Cardish said. “You can be successful with anything as long as you have an interest and push through it. It’s not an easy process, but I learn every day and enjoy it.”