HomeWork is new monthly column featuring insights from AHAM members on career, success, and life outside of work. For our first edition of HomeWork, we spoke with AHAM Board of Directors Chair Melanie Cook, who serves as the chief operating officer of GE Appliances, a Haier company.

Name three goals (personal or professional) you are pursuing in 2018.
1. Successful alignment on AHAM's long-term strategy and transition of my role to the new AHAM Board chair.
2. Better enable GE Appliances to serve our owners by aligning our brand strategies and using artificial intelligence, digitization and data analytics to improve our sales and operations planning process, owner insights and preventative service, among others.
3. Enjoy adventures with my family! This year we will visit my sister-in-law in Los Angeles, spend time with family in Florida and Michigan, return to London to reminisce about the time we lived there, and see North Wales for the first time!

How do you jumpstart your morning?
I have the same routine every morning, which starts with my husband sending me out the door with a large travel mug of coffee. During my 30-minute commute, I phone my parents in Florida. It’s a perfect time to connect and get started for the day. Given that it is winter in Kentucky right now, I usually end the call dreaming of the sun and beauty of southeast Florida!

(Editor’s note: In light of yesterday’s events in Parkland, Florida, Melanie Cook extends her deepest condolences to those affected by the tragedy.)
Predict an innovation that will revolutionize the next generation.
I am very excited for the day when we really can say “Beam me up, Scotty” and be at our destination. In the world of appliances, artificial intelligence is a game changer.

What is the best career advice you have ever received?
Always be your best true self. Never change your values or what you stand for.

What home appliance can you not live without?
First, I cannot live without my husband Brian utilizing our appliances. He is the chef in the family, and an amazing chef at that. My personal most-used appliance is our icemaker/water dispenser, but the most important would have to be our Monogram pro range. We put it through the paces and enjoy many wonderful meals!

What do you gain from your involvement with AHAM?
I have a deep amount of respect and appreciation for the AHAM leadership and our actively engaged members. AHAM is very efficient and progressive. Our members are passionate about our industry and focus on the right issues to improve the safety, efficiency and image for appliances on behalf of all of our owners.

What is your best advice you have for somebody who wants to succeed in the home appliance industry?
To succeed in this industry you really need to have a love for appliances and appreciate the true impact we have on the daily lives of owners. We ensure that our owners have clean clothes, save time so they can spend it on hobbies they love, can cook healthy food, can host a great party, or do whatever is important for that particular owner.

Melanie Cook, Chief Operating Officer, GE Appliances, a Haier company