Posted on: 4th August 2020, 11:59 am
For our latest instalment of our Meet the Team series, we hear from Ometis’ Sector Manager Neil Thorne.
What does your job role involve?
My role is to find (and hopefully close) new business for Ometis. So, it’s reviewing current leads and opportunities, liaising with our lead generation teams, and it’s maintaining contact with those prospects and customers to monitor their requirements, pains and procurement processes. I’m predominantly responsible for finding net new names for Ometis but I also look after a handful of key accounts assisting them in getting more value from their investment in Qlik.
How did you get into this industry?
I’m an accountant by trade and worked for a multinational software company that gave me the opportunity to move into the operational side of the business. That involved project management, consultancy and support and eventually I moved into pre-sales and subsequently into sales. I’ve always had an interest in analysing data and eventually I got the call from Andy Patrick, who I’d worked with before, to ask ‘how do you fancy coming and working with us?’ It was a good fit for me at the time and I’ve enjoyed every minute of it since.
What’s your favourite thing about working at Ometis?
I really enjoy working with the people here. We’ve got a mix of characters, including several who have moved from outside of the UK, which brings a mix of cultures also. The Qlik product is also fantastic which helps a great deal. In the past I’ve worked with products that occasionally weren’t necessarily the best fit for a prospect’s requirements but with Qlik I can always make an argument for why the prospect should buy it. There may well still be reasons why they decide to go with something else, but then they’re clearly making a mistake!
How important is it in your job that you really buy into the product?
As a sales person it’s key. I don’t want to be known as somebody sharp who’s just trying to make a deal. As a company, we’re about keeping customers for a long time, often starting with a small sale to show the value that can be attained and then helping them expand their use over time.
How have you found the transition to working from home?
It’s undoubtedly had its challenges as we all get used to this “new normal”, but on balance I really like it. It gives me the opportunity to spend more time with my family and I’m not travelling around the country half the time. I’m amazed how quickly people have begun to accept video calls as a viable alternative to face-to-face meetings – I’ve got a lot of suits and nice shirts in the wardrobe that are wasted at the moment! It also gives me the opportunity to have an old man power nap at about 12.15!
It’s definitely a positive thing in my view. Not having to undertake the 60-mile round trip each day is better for me and the environment. I can see a lot of other companies doing it as well eventually.
What’s your worst work habit?
Trying to do too many things at once and ending up not doing any of them perfectly! It can be too easy to think ‘I’m struggling with this piece of work – something nice, new and shiny has come in, I’ll go and have a play with that’. That’s my worst habit and I’m constantly fighting against that. If I’m not careful I end up spinning too many plates and I make a conscious effort to avoid that by focusing on the more important ones and where appropriate, saying no to some of the other requests.
What’s your most embarrassing work moment?
Chris Lofthouse might tell you I’ve had a few! I think my worst one was when we were together at a meeting in London. We were in their Boardroom waiting for them to come in. There was a fantastic view out the window, and in leaning to see further I hadn’t realised there was another pane of glass and I banged my head straight into it just as they were walking through the door. That was pretty embarrassing.
I also once did a demo with Chris where we’d arrived early and decided we had time for a quick breakfast. Five minutes before leaving to go to the demo I spilled coffee all down my shirt. So that wasn’t too great either!
Do you have any hidden talents?
I play county cricket for the Warwickshire Over 50s, or I did before I got injured … a signal I should retire gracefully I suspect! I’m also a bit of a quizaholic as well.
What’s your go-to work snack?
I’d love to say it was something out of the fresh fruit bowl that I keep by my desk, but that would be a big lie! My go-to snack has remained the same as when I was in the office – it’s still crisps.