Hello VOX Readers, how are you? Thank you for coming back to read this blog. Last week, I caught up with Conor Graney. Did you see his #LifeAtVeritas interview? Today I’d like to introduce my latest Veritas employee interview, which is with Bethany Lang, she’s also on the Veritas Early Career Programme, working with Conor, and joined our team earlier this year as an Associate Sales Engineer. Read Bethany’s interview below.
Zoe: Welcome Bethany, thank you for agreeing to participate in the #LifeAtVeritas blog series. What made you choose to join Veritas’ Early Career Programme?
Bethany: Hi Zoe, thank you for having me. I chose the Veritas’ Early Career Programme (VECP) because it's a fantastic opportunity, especially for someone with my background. My BA and initial career started in Pedagogy and English teaching. I taught secondary school English to 11 to16-year olds at a school in Hull. I decided to change careers a few years ago and moved into project management. I enjoyed working with the sales engineers (SE) and liked how their job perfectly married my love of teaching and building relationships with my role in the technology industry. When the opportunity came up to be able to complete this apprenticeship, it seemed like the perfect way for me to transition into sales engineering despite my less technical educational background.
Zoe: Bethany, what do you enjoy most about the Veritas’ Early Career Programme?
Bethany: I am learning so much and it has been so comprehensive and well planned. Everyone is so helpful and lovely, and I have been taught everything that I need to know. From tips on LinkedIn down to whiteboarding, and industry-recognised qualifications. I have joined with 11 other SEs from across Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), who are all amazing. We have been a fantastic support network for one another, from moral support as I finished my Master’s dissertation in the first few weeks of the programme, down to sharing notes, and giving each other feedback. We have been assigned mentors and buddies, I can’t praise the culture both at Veritas and within the programme as a whole highly enough.
Zoe: Can you share a summary of a day in the life of a Sales Associate on the Veritas Graduate Programme?
Bethany: It depends on the day! On a Monday we have a walking meeting to start the day, then we have sessions where we learn about customer care, ransomware, and we meet with various teams to learn about what they do. If we aren’t in sessions, then we have industry qualifications to study for such as the CompTIA A+ and Azure Fundamentals. We also have sessions with Pareto for our apprenticeship, for example, last week we had 16 hours of professional selling skills. We also have one to ones with our regionally aligned mentors. When we aren’t doing that, we also have self-study to complete for both the programme and the apprenticeship, so we have been keeping busy. Every interaction has been so valuable and it is key to how supported I feel in moving into the regionally aligned teams after the programme finishes.
Zoe: Bethany, what career advice would you give graduates on how to secure an apprenticeship role?
Bethany: Be yourself, be confident and don’t be afraid to reach out to people. Before I went for the assessment day I reached out to a current Veritas SE on LinkedIn to understand the role, company and expectations better. So, don’t be afraid to use your initiative to give yourself that leg up.
Zoe: To some extent, we have been influenced in our personal and work lives by others. Who are your role models and influencers? And why?
Bethany: That is a good question! I guess in a large part my Mum is my role model because she raised me to be tenacious, friendly and kind to everyone, whether they are the CEO or a cleaner, and to not be put off by something that seems male-dominated. A lot of social norms and values tell girls to steer clear of roles that are typically gendered as masculine, like engineering, and that can lead to a lack of human capital in the field and self-efficacy. I don’t think I would have moved from teaching to sales engineering if it hadn’t been for her idea; that you can do anything you want if you put your mind to it. I also think my mentor from my previous role influenced me, he taught me not to be afraid to speak to people. Research shows typically more girls, don’t over-promote themselves and I was in that boat. I felt like I was bothering people or being pushy, but my previous mentor taught me to always go and bother them, and that is one of the reasons I had the confidence to go on LinkedIn and connect with a current SE before the assessment day, and I’m so glad I did.
Zoe: Bethany, what motivates you?
Bethany: Knowledge. I think that comes from my love of both learning and teaching. I like learning new things and networking. You can learn so much by talking to new people, whether it is from their perspective or their culture. Active listening plays an important part in that.
Zoe: What’s your favourite Veritas solution or product?
Bethany: APTARE IT Analytics! I love the platform and it is so unique. I feel like It gives so much value to our customers. Want to see if your backups are getting backed up? APTARE IT Analytics. Want to know what your costs would look like if you moved your infrastructure to the cloud? APTARE IT Analytics. Want to know how to optimise your storage and save money? APTARE IT Analytics. It has so many uses, and I can’t wait to discover the rest of them.
Zoe: Bethany, what do you like to do in your free time?
Bethany: I like to travel and scuba dive when the world isn’t burning. I enjoy playing video games, reading books and I have recently taken an interest in cross-stitch.
Zoe: Finally, what technology can’t you live without?
Bethany: My phone, which sounds quite cliché. I use it to watch TV, play games, get directions, and look up things I don’t know. My Dad lives abroad and due to COVID I can’t see my Mum or Grandparents despite them only being in Devon, so I have found Facetime invaluable as a way to stay connected with them. It makes our big world a whole lot smaller!
Thank you, Bethany, for sharing your thoughts and experiences. Great advice from your Mum; “you can do anything you want if you put your mind to it”. Having a goal, reaching for it and achieving it is so satisfying. I wish you all the best in your apprenticeship and look forward to seeing you flourish as an SE.
If you enjoyed this Life at Veritas blog post with Bethany Lang, then stay tuned as there will be another interview-style post next week with Sam Eastwood, who is also on the VECP. And if this has inspired you to join our team, check out our job vacancies on LinkedIn and apply here.
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