Princeton Batts, our Director of Human Resource at iBAN is from Philadelphia. Prince as we call him has overcome many obstacles in life. In doing so, he has taken on many roles. He is a leader, a teacher, a father, a businessman and a friend just to name a few. I don’t know many people who pack their bags, leave everything behind, move to another country while learning a new language at the same time. Do you?
iBAN: You grew up in Philadelphia. Did you stay in the same place?
Princeton: I stayed in Philadelphia or surrounding areas. I’ve tried to live in the suburbs as well as New Jersey but the city will always be my home.
Every child has the dream of becoming something, firefighter, policeman, lawyer, what about Princeton’s dreams?
That is a good question. You know it’s funny because I didn’t know what I wanted to be. I really didn’t. I had to find my own way. I had a few good mentors in life. They deserve all the credit for showing me the way.
So what was your motivation?
Attitude determines Altitude! Lou Manzi was one of those mentors I mentioned and he instilled this in me. Although I met him late in life, he taught me quite a bit. Lou respected the fact that my motivation was my daughter Portia. Raising a little girl alone was my life. The rest you’ll have to read in my book.
At what age did you have your first job? What did you do after that?
I had two jobs at once at 17! I worked from 7:30 in the morning at Wendy’s flipping hamburgers. I left at 3:00 o’ clock to go down the street to work in a gas station. I went from grease to oil all in a days work. A very interesting time in my life I must say.
What did you do after that?
I worked in the Albert Einstein Hospital in Philadelphia. Believe it or not, I was a housekeeper. I did housekeeping work, I cleaned rooms and mopped floors . I just wanted to have a job, to be part of the work force. I came from a tough neighborhood where you didn’t have many choices but I wanted to make my parents proud so I always had a job.
How did you get into the Pharmaceutical business? I want the entire story…
I was working at Albert Einstein Hospital and my Director left to go to a work for a pharmaceutical. When she left she asked me to come and work for her as a housekeeper. I went with her. One job title after another, people began to notice my work. This process of having my work be admired by others went on for years. At one point, Jim Robinson, my Director and a good friend, advised me to take college courses. I earned a degree in Business thanks to him and I continued on to receive a Bachelor’s Degree in Humans Resources. So, my years in the pharmaceutical industry, I went from basically mopping floors to being in Corporate America running a global program / traveling every two weeks all over the United States. A long way from flipping hamburgers.
We make plans and God laughs.
When did you study? At night? Because it’s difficult to study and work and have so many responsibilities.
Well, it was more than just studying and working because in the middle of this I was raising my daughter alone. So going to school, going to work, coming home at night and being a dad etc. She was such a good baby and now she is still my best friend.
You are proud of her…
So, with all of these things happening, did you have a moment where you thought, this is not what I wanted for me? This is not what I choose for me?
No, because I didn’t choose any of this things, except for what I’m doing right now. I chose the DR. That’s the only thing in life I chose to do. Everything else came through work, studying and mentoring. I didn’t plan anything in life except this move to the Dominican Republic. We make plans and God laughs.
Why DR? Uh, that’s a big question. I have traveled extensively all over the world for work or pleasure. The DR stole my heart. From the first time I came here ten years ago, the people here have embraced me. They made me feel very comfortable from the beginning.
What do you do in iBAN?
I’m the Director of Human Resources but there’s much more. I recruit people from all over the world. We have a very diverse group. A company without diversity is doomed to fail. From training and facilitation to teaching, I do whatever is best for Iban.
What do you think is the future for iBAN?
Well, you know. I’ve never met a young man with such focus. Daniel is iBAN and iBAN is Daniel. When you look at him that’s what you see, iBAN. Every successful company has a great leader. I see a very bright future ahead.
Prince, thank you so much for doing this interview and for being so open. We appreciate it.