I Love My Job: Jamaal White
Jamaal White has worked as a Comcast technician for nine years. He was the star of Comcast’s national ad campaign about the company’s commitment to improving the customer experience. The ad ran on local TV and radio and on national websites like The New York Times. Here White tells us the toughest part of his job as a technician and what inspires him.
I grew up in … in West Philly. I was born in South Philly.
I attended … West Philadelphia High School.
My first job was … some city work with my middle school. During the summer we painted murals inside of the school. But when it was time to get paid, everyone else got a paycheck, and I didn’t. They forgot about me!
When I was younger I dreamed of becoming … a microchemist. This dream was short-lived because I also dreamed about making video games.
Some Comcast employee perks are … steep discounts, and we get a lot of benefits. With Cable TV and Internet for example, the services are free but the equipment isn’t.
Something people get wrong about Comcast is … they’re not clear on a lot of the benefits they get. There are a lot of Comcast services that come with the subscription that they aren’t aware of like antivirus software.
The toughest part of my job is … first trying to figure out what a customer’s problem is. I feel like Sherlock Holmes when I get into a residence. I have to first figure out what the problem is to get to the end result of a happy customer.
I’ve always been good at … working with others.
I’m currently working on … a poem that I’m writing. I’m a bit of a poet and this particular poem is inspired by my son. It’s about the trials of being a parent and what it’s like to sometimes feel helpless.
The best thing about being a Comcast technician is … the free cable. [Laughs] No. The best thing is that we’re always spearheading new tech, and I’m able to get my hands on it. It’s great to constantly be on top of the next thing that comes out. There is great innovation happening at Comcast, and I get to get my hands dirty.
So far 2017 has been … very warm. I’m a winter baby. I want to be able to participate in winter activities.
I’m inspired by … my son. I’ve been a different person since he was born.
In ten years I see myself … moving into a more tech-based side of Comcast.
Comcast’s commitment to improving customer service is … awesome. I’ve been trained and given the opportunity to show people that we value customer service. We are progressing in the right direction and do a lot that outsiders aren’t aware of.
My favorite Philly pastime is … attending cookouts and barbecues.
A funny story on the job was when … we had a customer in Roxborough who kept experiencing issues in one particular room. We discovered that there was a hole; something had burrowed into the brick wall. After a while, we could see that a black squirrel had chewed up the cable. Once we got a window open, the squirrel ran right out.
I get my haircut at … three different barbers. But I need to give a shout out to the my first barber—my mom. I’m the oldest of eight and growing up we couldn’t afford to send everyone to the barbershop. So I was her guinea pig.
My daily schedule goes from … about 8:30 in the morning to 5 in the evening. Before that I get my son ready and take him to school and help out with the breakfast program there. And during the day I can be traveling from one side of the city to the other. And if my day runs longer because a customer needs my attention, then I’m out there longer.
The most important lesson I’ve learned in the last decade is … patience.
My favorite music artist of all time is … Michael Jackson. He moves everyone. His songs stand the test of time. When I’m 90, I know I’ll be shuffling to Smooth Criminal.
I firmly believe in … family. And that’s in the most open-minded way possible. Not just brothers and sisters in your immediate family, but when you have a family dynamic in other settings, it’s powerful. It’s one of the joys of working where I do. It’s very homely even though we are business oriented.
My connection to the Eagles is … when I was on my high school football team, I was able to go train with them because I had the highest GPA on the team. I met Andy Reid who’s the nicest guy ever, and I toured the stadium at the time with Cecil Martin.
When the Comcast commercial featuring me comes on … my mom goes nuts. She stops whatever she’s doing to watch it.
Follow @fabiolacineas on Twitter.