Hi! My name is Stephanie Hubka, and I am the Vice President of Finance for the Metro DC Chapter of ATD this year. I have been a chapter member since 2009 and a volunteer since 2013. I have also been really proud to serve on the Board of Directors in a few roles, including the 2014 Director of Communications, the 2015 President Elect, the 2016 President, and the 2017 Past President. I was also the co-lead of the Free Agent CoP (now the Independent Consultant CoP) in 2018 and 2019 before rejoining the Board as the VP of Finance in 2020. I’m also a member of the National Advisors for Chapters, known as the NAC, which is a group of former ATD presidents nominated by ATD’s Board of Directors to serve as advisors, advocates, and mentors within ATD to help chapters do what they do best: provide exceptional membership experiences. If it sounds like I spend a lot of time volunteering for ATD, it’s true: I have been so fortunate to benefit from my membership at the local and national level, and ATD has been a huge part of my professional development. I am always excited to give back in any way I can.
When I’m not hard at work on an ATD project, I’m hard at work as the managing partner of Protos Learning, LLC the consulting firm that I started in 2017. Through Protos, I have the opportunity to partner with companies around the world to develop strategic solutions to their biggest talent development challenges. From revitalizing existing programs to launching entirely new initiatives, no day is every truly the same- which is my favorite part of self-employment! Additionally, I am also the co-founder of Road Unraveled which is Protos’ travel education arm with a mission to helping people make the most of their vacation time. Travel is a huge part of who I am, and I am passionate about using PTO for rest, relaxation, and a little adventure when possible!
5:00 AM: Morning Routine
I’m a classic early bird, and I love getting my day started before the world is awake. I use the first 60 minutes of the day to mentally and physically prepare for a good day. I review my to-do list, check emails, and do some reading. On most days I like to read articles aligned to projects that I am working on, but I sometimes swap articles for a book if I’m reading one that has really captured my attention. Then I trade PJs for gym clothes and start the day off with a workout. I am especially devoted to my Peloton these days, and most mornings I’ll combine a ride with strength training and stretching. After that, it’s time to shower and get ready to get to work!
7:00 AM: Breakfast
I have breakfast with my husband Adam every morning; he makes the best cup of coffee in the world. I love to pair my coffee with fruit, toast, or quiche to refuel after my workout. We also use our time together to talk through our schedules for the day; mine varies quite a bit, so it’s our chance to be sure we know when each of us will be on calls, when we are interruptible, and—most importantly—when we’re having dinner!
8:00 AM: Work Time
I get my best work done in the morning, so I try to keep mornings free for unstructured work time to make progress on client deliverables. My to-do list changes every day; I might be focused on authoring an eLearning course, writing a training strategy recommendation report, or developing a course design plan during this time. I try to keep my browser windows minimized and email hidden during this time to stay on-task and avoid disruptions, which can help me be as productive as possible before the meetings begin!
10:00 AM: Client Calls
I get most of my energy from connecting with colleagues and clients, and by mid-morning I am settled in for some quality time with Zoom, Teams, WebEx, Google Meet, and the people who will join me there! While some calls are scheduled check-ins, many calls are about brainstorming or talking about new projects. This is my chance to find out what is going well with my clients and where I can provide some additional support, both of which can inform how I spend my time.
1:00 PM: Lunch Time
It’s already been a busy day, so I try to carve out time for lunch and a little quiet time before things pick up again. When possible, I love to make lunch, but I’m also happy to have a bowl of soup with a small salad and some sourdough bread when that’s a better fit for my schedule. I often do a 10-minute meditation to pause, reflect, and focus; after a morning of taking in a lot of new information, there is often a lot to process, and without dedicated time to jot down notes I know I’m more likely to forget something important.
3:00 PM: Facilitation
I love it when I have a chance to facilitate workshops and training sessions, and that’s a big part of many of my afternoons. Between developing custom workshops for clients and delivering some of my own, I really enjoy being part of the learning experience. After spending most of my career developing eLearning courses, in-person and virtual in-person sessions are a fun addition to my schedule!
5:00 PM: Closing Up
I like to reserve an hour at the end of the day for wrap up and administrative tasks: final emails, last-minute calls, and jotting down items for tomorrow’s to-do list are all priorities before transitioning away from work for the day.
6:00 PM: Dinner Time
Dinnertime is a good pause point for me between the workday and my evening activities. We usually have quick meals during weeknights, so if we’re not ordering a meal for delivery, I’ll cook something we can enjoy before I get ready for any evening calls or work I get to do.
7:00 PM: Volunteering and Fun
Many of my evenings are spent on volunteer work, podcast development, and relaxing! Metro DC ATD calls are often at night, and I am always excited to hop on Zoom to work and catch up- many chapter members have become great friends, which makes the time spent working with them even better. I also work on Road Unraveled articles in the evening, which is a great way to both engage with something meaningful while also spending some great quality time with my husband.
9:30 PM: Bedtime
I’m pretty tired by 9:30, and because I wake up early I don’t mind going to bed on the early side as well! I often like to read for a while before bed (fiction is my favorite for bedtime), and there are plenty of nights when curling up on the couch to watch some TV while playing a puzzle game on my phone is all I need to start to relax. By 10 PM I am usually sound asleep—after all, another busy day will be here soon!
I am enormously grateful to have a career I love and many busy days full of meaningful work. I owe so much to Metro DC ATD; this community and our amazing membership have prepared me well and continue to connect me to incredible TD practitioners. If we’re not connected, please reach out on LinkedIn! I’m always happy to help connect members to volunteer opportunities, talk about talent development trends, and make new friends!