We had the good fortune of connecting with Hayley Xandy Novack and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Hayley Xandy, is there a quote or affirmation that’s meaningful to you?
“I may walk slowly, but I never walk backwards.” – Abraham Lincoln
This quote crossed the stage with me on my cap as I graduated from Sonoma State University in 2019 after 6 years of attendance. I share this extra detail because I have accepted that not everyone in life goes at the same pace.
The saying “Rome wasn’t built in a day” has some similarities, but maybe different people would have built Rome faster. Who knows? All we can do is move at our own pace, and keep moving. To put not so lightly, if you stop moving, you’re dead.
Everything I have done in life, everything I have accomplished, I did in my own way, at my own pace, and I don’t believe the joy I had in completing these journeys would have been greater just because I completed them faster than others. If anything, I savored the moment more by taking my time to fully appreciate each of those journeys. I can’t wait to spend as much time as I need to savoring the next one.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
After finishing college proudly with a BA in History and a minor in Jewish Studies, I did what any graduate would do. I took the first job made available when I moved back to Los Angeles, and that was working for my mom in health insurance. I am the account manager for Playa Vista Insurance Services, and my role is to meet the day-to-day needs of the clients along with managing their open enrollment and renewals.
In order to grow my professionalism and network, I joined organizations like the Westchester Rotary Club. I also joined the board of EBPA of Southern California. Not only am I connecting with my community, I have strengthened my knowledge in my industry. The people I have met in these organizations have motivated me to be more professional and successful.
It definitely wasn’t easy. Working for family, it can blur the lines between what is personal and professional, but somehow we have overcome it all! My mom is definitely a mentor, but has also helped me connect with other people in the industry who have taught me more than most in their first year of insurance. My mom also started a non-profit, The Power of a Shower, which provides mobile showers, hygiene products, and more to our unhoused neighbors. Every minute has been a pleasure operating it with her to give back to our community.
The health insurance industry has certainly been a challenge as it is constantly evolving, but I am grateful to have found a place where help is always needed. With so many people struggling to make it, especially after the pandemic, I am lucky to have such a stable career.
I would want people to know that while some things may have been given to me, I don’t take it for granted. I work hard, and I spend extra time giving back because not everyone has had the privileges I have.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
A week long trip in LA? How exciting! We would definitely have to go to K-Town for some delicious Korean BBQ. With COVID closing everything, I have certainly missed going for drinks and dancing in West Hollywood. So many great brunch spots throughout LA too. I am always looking for a new one.
While I would normally rush to Disneyland, that is not in LA. So instead, one spot that I think is just the coolest is The Last Bookstore. Whether you are a reader, a tourist, or just looking for something different, it is a great spot to explore.
I think the last day of the week I would top off with a good old time at the Venice Boardwalk. I get some Thrifty’s style ice cream, fries, maybe get a henna tattoo on the boardwalk. I love watching people tear it up at the skatepark. Then the best way to end the night is to sit on the beach listening to the locals at the drum circle while watching the sun set.Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
What a wonderful opportunity it is to be able to give praise to those who have made me who I am today.
To my professor and Rabbi Henry Shreibman who challenged me in school and in faith.
To the organization of Rotary where I found friends and a home throughout college and adult life, and also taught me to be selfless and serve others.
To my dearest friends who have lifted me up when I was at some of my lowest moments, you know just who you are.
And to my mom – you raised me to have my own voice, my own opinion, and taught me that growing up is hard, but not impossible.
I am who I am today because of all these people!