Celebrating Pride Month: Elyse Bais
Elyse Bais, Operations Analyst with E15 Group, started her career at Compass Group USA eight years ago as a catering attendant for Bon Appétit Management Company while she was a student at Seattle University. Elyse loves surprising people with her unique talents like beatboxing, playing the ukulele and whistling. While this self-proclaimed outdoor adventurer doesn’t take herself too seriously, she does take her career at Compass and passion for empowering others very seriously. Read her story to learn how she came to embrace her true self and how she’s helping others do the same.
What does Pride Month mean to you?
For me, it is really about people being comfortable expressing themselves. Pride is a celebration of reaching that point where you are proud of who you are. Our unique identities and unique traits are what contribute to the world, and the more we are ourselves, the more we can make an impact.
What impact do you want to have at Compass?
I want to inspire positivity and empower people to embrace their true selves. I try to focus on bringing goodness and integrity into the workplace to create opportunities for human connection so that we can improve our understanding of one another. I think in a workplace where there are lots of deadlines and things to do, sometimes that aspect is overlooked. But we are at our best when we feel understood and I want to contribute to an environment where everyone feels understood, respected and appreciated.
How do you show up authentically?
I’ve had a lot of experiences in my life where I kind of muted myself, and that doesn’t feel good internally. I’m originally from Guam, which is a small island in the Pacific, and community and connection are big parts of our life. Because of societal expectations, it was difficult for me to come out. I had to learn to ignore expectations from others and embrace the things that make me… me. Now that I am more aligned with my inner values, I feel comfortable being myself and loving others for who they are.
What advice to you have for others to help them live more authentically?
It is a process to accept yourself. It takes time. So, for me, I use humor and compassion as a way to help others feel that sense of belonging and community until they are ready to fly their own flag. I want people to know you can rock this world just by being yourself. You go out there, and you show them who you are!
What are your goals for the future?
We each have the ability to impact somebody’s life for the better, to help others pursue their purpose and succeed. And that’s what I want to do. I’d love to be in a place at Compass where I can mentor and help others be themselves. Part of the human condition is continuing to expand yourself and to change, grow and develop so you can contribute to the world. It’s a beautiful to witness all the potential you see in another person actualize and come to fruition.