Welcome to the second installment of the "Get to Know the pi-top Team" series here on the pi-blog, where I interview some of the pi-top team to get to know the people behind the magic!
I'm chatting with people from all areas of the company, in all corners of the world, to give you a better idea of how things work at pi-top. In #2, I interviewed Tracy, one of our Sales Executives based in London, England. Read on to find out more about Tracy’s role and what she thinks about working at pi-top!
A: Hey Tracy! Please may you introduce yourself and what you do here at pi-top?
T: Hiya! My name is Tracy and I work in the partnership development/sales department at pi-top. My role is to connect with makers of all kinds in the education market, like computer science teachers, after-school STEM and Robotics clubs, that would be interested in collaborating with us.
My department's aim in particular is to build the hype for pi-top in the engineering space and see how we can support their infrastructure with our ecosystem.
A: How did you start working at pi-top? I know you have a background in education, right? What brought you to make that transition to pi-top?
T: Before working at pi-top I used to be a teacher's assistant in a secondary school. I had studied English Literature at university: I knew I wanted to work in education. It was an extremely rewarding job. I loved the school I was with however, there were never enough hours in the working day.
Being overworked I felt like I wasn’t doing my job properly, not giving the best support I could to the students or for the teacher. Hence I decided to transition into a job where I could still have that connection with the education space and work with schools but provide something that could be of benefit and pi-top seemed like the perfect fit.
A: Can you describe your average day?
T: The great thing about my day is that I don’t have a set schedule, we’re talking to people all over the world so time zones can determine how I structure my workday. However, in the morning I respond to all my emails to keep on top of any urgent matters. That normally takes me an hour.
Every day I will have some tasks that I have set. For example, if I have sent a sample over to a school I will have a task that reminds me I need to get in contact with them to see if they have had a chance to play around with it. Some days I will have meetings with clients about our product to see if there is room for collaboration and how we can support their organisation.
I will also have a meeting with my team to see how they’re doing but also get some feedback that we receive from our customers about their demands and how we can better support them.
A: What’s a work-related accomplishment that you’re really proud of?
T: Being able to work in the American market and have conversations with universities about working in underserved communities, like how we can work with their engineering departments to get young people excited about STEM with our solution.
It feels like you’re being a part of something much bigger, giving students the opportunity to thrive in the job market when they leave school, especially if they come from underrepresented environments.
A: What have you learnt in your time working at pi-top?
T: While working at pi-top the biggest thing I have learnt is to be resilient. We work with a range of different markets and the sales cycle can take a long time. Not everybody is going to partner with us and that’s okay.
I think always reminding yourself of the benefits we have to offer is key to being successful and at the end of the day, we want to be able to help the engineering/computer science community. That's ultimately our aim and it drives what the team and I do.
A: What’s your go-to productivity trick?
T: I’m thankful that my team is pretty sick: we’re always in constant communication with each other about what we’re finding hard. Whenever I need a productivity kick, we schedule a meeting and brainstorm some ideas that can help workflow.
A: What’s the biggest misconception people have about your rob role?
T: All we do is cold calling and only want your money XD
A: What advice would you give to someone wanting to get into a career in tech sales?
T: You need to have thick skin, not everybody you talk to is going to have the same enthusiasm as you will or respond to your emails. Keep pushing and reaching out because you will never know who will get back to you.
A: And finally, what’s your favourite emoji?
T: The upside-down smiley face emoji it’s so ambiguous, I love it 🙃
Thank you to Tracy for taking the time to talk with me about her position at pi-top. It was really evident in our conversation that what motivates Tracy and the sales team is their shared passion for improving the world of computer science education.
I loved her point about having the resilience to persevere, fuelled by her mission to support the STEAM education community - not cold-calling!
We hope you enjoyed reading about Tracy's role at pi-top. For enquiries, please contact Tracy at firstname.lastname@example.org.