Life of an ATA Managing Consultant — Meet Dom
As we’ve seen in previous interviews with Tom Bolek and Daniel Marinovic, our team in Toronto is full of skilled professionals who are also loads of fun to work with. We’re happy to introduce you to another indispensable member of the Toronto office, Managing Consultant Dom Matousek. We caught up with Dom to find out a little bit more about what a Managing Consultant does at Ataccama, what it’s like to work in our Toronto office, and what he finds passion in outside of work. Enjoy!
How long have you been at Ataccama?
I joined Ataccama in December 2019 only a couple of days after my interview. I had just got back to Prague after two years of backpacking around the world, itching to be productive again. Fast forward to 2022, that itch is scratched and I am still very glad I’ve become an Ataccamer. I’m proud to work with so many talented people.
What does your team do?
Presales falls right in the middle between the customer’s needs and Ataccama’s services and products. In my opinion, this role is getting even more crucial as our platform is becoming heavily customizable and the requirements from different customers are often unique.
The presales process starts by learning and understanding what the customer needs. Afterwards, we develop and present an initial view of the solution, help to sell this solution, ensure that the delivery team gets the right information, and offer feedback to the R&D team. It’s a ride!
What is a typical day like for you?
It’s going to sound like a cliché, but the workload is so diverse that it’s difficult to describe a typical day. This week you could catch me preparing a PoC solution for a large international bank, delivering a custom demonstration to a wine producer, writing down responses to a big healthcare company’s technical questions, and anything in between.
What skills are required to thrive on this team?
The skillset is as diverse as the workload. The best sales engineers can multitask, are good listeners and excellent communicators. It is vital to be passionate about emerging trends and new technologies. The vast majority of deals are very fragile during the presales stage, so it certainly helps if you can manage stress well. Last but not least, a positive attitude works wonders.
How has Ataccama changed since you started?
In the past three years, we have witnessed monumental and unprecedented changes.
Since I joined, the number of Ataccamers has grown by 250%. Ataccama has gradually transformed from a small company with a startup mentality into a global market leader. With a lot of additional growth ahead of us, we are now focusing more on the standardization of internal processes and scalability.
From my presales point of view, I have also noticed a significant shift in how customers perceive Ataccama. We’ve always had great products, but Gen2 is a game-changer. A lot of prospective customers get really excited when they learn about all the functionalities we can offer and how that could help their organizations.
And of course, there is one difference that was caused by the pandemic. With a very limited warning, we were all forced to move our work lives into our kitchens, living rooms, and bedrooms. This transition wasn’t without challenges, but I don’t think anyone expected this massive transformation to be handled this well. Good job, everyone!
How would you describe the culture of the Toronto team?
Like a lot of other large cities, Toronto went through a series of strict lockdowns and WFH orders. Hence, my cultural experience was largely limited to Slack for my first year in Toronto. But I have to say that everyone is always very accommodating. We help each other whenever we can. At the moment it looks like the sixth(?) wave of Covid is behind us, restrictions are lifted, we are returning to the office, and I can’t wait to find out more about our team culture!
What’s your passion project?
I used to work for a company that develops custom GPS navigation software for oversized trucks that must avoid certain roads, and emergency services that have exceptions to the road rules, and so on. Since then, I geek out on geocoding and address validations. I light up anytime a prospect asks whether we are able to verify if an address exists. I almost have to watch myself not to jump too deep down that rabbit hole.
My biggest non-work passion project is without a doubt traveling. I am aspiring to become a member of the Travelers’ Century Club (fancy term for people who have visited at least a hundred countries). I’m currently at number 74 and it’s admittedly getting harder and harder as you typically visit the “easy” countries first. It’s never been about ticking off the places though — “it’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey” (no pun intended). I love to travel because it takes me out of my comfort zone, teaches me new skills, gives me a different perspective on life, and often helps me realize how lucky I am.
If I only had 24 hours in Toronto, what would you recommend I do?
I wouldn’t be a consultant if I didn’t answer at least one question with “it depends.” The outside temperature difference between summer and winter can be and often is more than 50 degrees Celsius. This obviously affects your plans. I would recommend visiting in the summer.
Beat the crowds and start your day in the Art Gallery of Ontario to enjoy one of the most impressive art collections in the world. There is a nice cafe on the second floor so grab your breakfast surrounded by masterpieces. To have a proper Canadian experience, you should indulge in something with maple syrup.
After breakfast, you can take a ferry and travel to Toronto Island. You can rent a kayak, play tennis at one of the public courts, take a swim, and enjoy the magnificent view of the Toronto skyline. You will be hungry after the exercise. Toronto is a melting pot of cultures, which means you can get any authentic cuisine you can think of. I would recommend the northern Thai restaurant called PAI.
Then, let’s do something touristic! Take a stroll in the brick-lined streets of the hip and trendy Distillery District — home to unique cafes and day bars, fashion boutiques, and independent art galleries. After you get some souvenirs, you can get your sports fan hat on. There are three major league teams in the city. Pick your sport and “make some noise” for the Raptors, Blue-Jays, or Maple Leaves.
For a night out I would recommend the neighborhood of Little Portugal. Have dinner in one of the many *insert favorite cuisine* restaurants and finish the day with a bar tour. There are plenty to choose from. Make the Canadian experience complete by ordering the Caesar cocktail.
Any team inside jokes or funny stories?
I’m sorry but they wouldn’t be inside jokes anymore if I told you. But I think it’s safe to confess to one guilty pleasure of a lot of us in presales — we tend to enjoy the sarcastic “sure, fully supported” when something similar to this pops up in a list of requirements: “Your tool should use AI + ML to find and fix DQ issues. Also, blockchain is very important!”
If you could have a drink with any Ataccamer, who would it be?
I hope I will get a chance to have a drink with many of them at the next Allstaff!
Does presales sound like an exciting challenge to you? Want to join Dom’s team and work with our wonderful consultants in Toronto? We’d love to hear from you!
Explore our open positions over on our job portal!