LoriBlog Post

Team Spotlight: Lori Swanson

Team member:

Lori Swanson

What is your position at FlightStats?

Director of Finance and Accounting

What made you interested in what you do?

I was one of those kids who loved story problems in math class. I was always interested in numbers and solving problems as well as creative writing. Finance allows me to use those skills while interacting with people in a business environment. I have been involved in some aspect of finance and accounting ever since college.

How long have you been working at FlightStats?

2 years

How has FlightStats evolved since you started?

Since we’ve grown, we have become more structured in our business processes. It has been interesting to me because I enjoy using software to the fullest extent to free people up for more creative work. I’ve seen that happen across the entire company, but especially in finance. It has allowed us to think through our processes more and makes it possible to concentrate on other projects outside of the day-to-day accounting.

What do you like about working at FlightStats?

I like the people and the culture, and I also like the products. I enjoy traveling, and I especially like to fly, so I’m fascinated by the types of products we create. I’m glad we have a start-up culture because I enjoy the freedom of being able to take off in a different direction without someone thinking I’m stepping on their toes. The people are so smart, which I love because it allows me to continually expand my horizons in ways that I wouldn’t think of on my own.

What’s the best part of working in accounting at FlightStats?

There are a variety of things that need to get done in the finance and accounting department. We were so small for a long time, which resulted in several projects not being priorities. Now, there are many opportunities to work on very challenging projects and do things that you wouldn’t be able to do in another company because here you have so much freedom to take on as much responsibility as you can handle.

What are your hopes for our company?

I would like to see FlightStats continue to grow their customer base and product base. I want us to develop better and more exciting products as we go through the years. I hope we can continue to have a start-up culture even though a much larger company now owns us. I want us to keep our cultural roots.

What do you do in your free time?

I like to read. I read a lot of both fiction and nonfiction. I’m a big fan of Dickens, but I’m also a huge fan of more contemporary, modern writers like John Grisham–I have read almost everything he has written. I like to hike and spend time outdoors, and that’s what I like about the Northwest. My husband and I enjoy spending time with our two adorable rescue Chihuahuas and our three finicky cats.

Any other fun facts you want to share?

My most unusual job was working at Mount Bachelor in Central Oregon. I was a ski bum for one season and worked part-time in their accounting department; my job was to count cash and total daily credit card receipts. I skied almost every day that season and drank a lot of Mirror Pond Pale Ale.