Downtime with Jill Nelson


Live, Work, Play wit the CEO of Ruby Receptionists.

Share this article!


Live, Work, Play with the CEO of Ruby Receptionists

0915 downtime01

What I’m reading

I just finished The Circle, a dystopian novel by Dave Eggers that has an interesting take on what can happen if company culture and social platforms are taken too far. I’m not sure I enjoyed the book, but it sure was thought provoking.


The latest app I downloaded was Duolingo. My niece is challenging me to use it to learn Spanish.

Can’t go without

Currently, my favorite gadget is my Nespresso espresso maker. Nothing beats an incredible cup of coffee! I have one at home and in my office.

What I’m watching

The best movie I’ve seen this past year is Boyhood. I have a grown son in San Francisco, and the movie reminds me of the beautiful and painful process of watching kids grow up.

There’s no place like…

Second to Portland, I would have to say New York. I love the people and the eclectic mix of business, art, creativity and nature. Plus, the energy is contagious.

Out of office

I like hiking, camping and cooking, and I love salsa dancing! The music is intoxicating, and it’s a great way to shed the cares of the day and just have fun!

What sets us apart

We only hire employees who are as wildly passionate about making other people happy as we are. Many people don’t realize the critical role that technology plays. Ruby is a tech-enabled services company. Behind the scenes, we have a powerful proprietary system that helps our receptionists follow personalized call-routing instructions accurately and consistently on thousands of calls a day.

What motivates you to come to work every day?

My team is what motivates me. Their positivity and enthusiasm make the office so much fun!

Business role model

Tough question! I have a relentless resistance to the idea that something can be “fine” or “good enough.” I’m always looking for a better way. For that reason, I’m really inspired by the work of both Steve Jobs and Henry Ford. Both had powerful visions and the guts to disrupt their industries.

Advice for young people entering the industry

Embrace the gift of feedback and recognize that skeptics can be your biggest assets. Instead of getting discouraged, leverage their criticism to make your ideas better.