I find it very difficult to stand still and am constantly looking for the next challenge. So when I started my career journey 8 years ago at Cisco as an IT engineer, I knew that it was just a starting point. It was a somewhat static position, which I accepted as a first step on my way to where my true passion lay: being part of Sales, in a company where I could make a real impact and enjoy the thrill of the ride.
Growing up and throughout my life, I’ve had an affinity for digging into the technical side of things and really getting my hands dirty. A hobby of mine is fixing and restoring cars. I see them as giant puzzles and blank canvases that require know-how and a discerning eye to execute well. This inclination has led me to work in the software industry.
However, it has also always been clear to me that working exclusively on the technical side of a product was not enough. Just like with cars, the end product needs to be communicated and presented well to really have an impact. I truly relish the challenge of helping customers understand the true value of a solution, and mining out the nuggets that are most pertinent to them. I’ve always enjoyed meeting customers at shows, demoing products, working collaboratively in POVs, and educating users about a product’s leading features and use cases. There is no greater professional satisfaction than seeing customers “get it”, because it means the solution is ultimately going to help their day-to-day lives.
So it was eventually clear to me that my goal was to become a Sales Engineer, a position that combines both the technical and communication sides of the product. The only question was that of timing and opportunity. I decided to move a step closer to my end goal, and became a Technical Marketing Engineer (TME) at Cisco, working with switches and routers, building data centers, going to shows and demonstrating products and solutions. But while I was doing more of what I liked and felt like I was getting closer – there was something else missing: my ability to make an impact. I wanted to have more influence on the business and I knew that the only way to do so was to join a fast-paced and energetic environment of a startup. One thing led to another, and I found my way into BigPanda. And what a change that was.
Joining in and progressing as a TME, I immediately felt the difference. While I was doing sales enablement and whitepapers similar to that of my previous job, the atmosphere was completely different. The people at BigPanda are highly driven, as is the company on the whole, and there is always a high sense of urgency and excitement. We are out to win – every deal, every customer, every time. And in the process, we work together as a team, “punching as one fist”, each of us doing our best in the effort towards our common goal.
After a certain period as a TME, I felt it was time to finally make my move – and I applied to join the sales team as a Sales Engineer. And true to the company’s promise to provide a supporting environment for career development, I was given the chance. I was excited about the challenge and knew I needed to work hard to gather my bearings, but the whole team was very supportive and made my transition as seamless as possible. They were truly invested in my success.
Since then it’s been one heck of a ride. As an SE, I find my job highly rewarding and it’s an amazing experience being on the front lines. More importantly, we all work together to make things happen, including the extended Sales team, Engineering, Marketing and often Customer Success and Management – to provide our prospects everything they need to succeed with BigPanda.
Looking back at the past 2 years, I am happy to say that I have found in BigPanda a place where I can fulfill my professional aspirations. A place that provides me with the opportunity, the support and the tools I need to keep my career moving forward in the direction I am aiming. And ultimately, a place where I can enjoy the thrill of the Sales ride, and make a true impact on the success of the company.