Apptega Employee Spotlight Interview
We are excited to be spotlighting Hatch Means, a Business Development Representative (BDR) at Apptega, in this employee highlight interview. Hatch has had a very successful first quarter and, in March, surpassed records set by previous BDRs. With his consistently high numbers, Hatch shares who inspired his career path, what he’s learned from it, and what his journey has been like adjusting to his role since graduating college.
Read more to see a glimpse into Hatch’s journey to becoming a successful business development representative (BDR) and how his career has grown at Apptega in our quick Q&A below.
Q: What excites you the most about working at a company like at Apptega?
A: I wanted to find a company where I would be able to grow and found that Apptega provides an opportunity to be able to further my career.
I’ve learned that cybersecurity is a rapidly growing industry, and more companies are starting to realize that it is something they are going to have to take more seriously, so they’re looking for companies like Apptega.
I’ve also really enjoyed the startup environment at Apptega. I knew I didn’t want to work for a massive company coming out of college, I had some older peers who had talked me through what their experiences were like at different companies. That helped me realize that a startup would be the place I’d want to be.
The tight-knit community and company culture that develops in startups like Apptega tend to be different from larger organizations. I believe the culture lends itself to provide more one-on-one time, allows you to get questions answered easier, and really helps you work with other areas of the business to learn new skills.
Q: What is your favorite part about working with the sales team at Apptega?
A: The business development representative (BDR) role works hand and hand with sales and marketing, so you get to see both sides of it, which I like a lot. I was actually a marketing major, so I’m familiar with what marketing does within an organization, but I was not as familiar with what the sales team does on the day-to-day and what it takes for them to close a deal.
So I like to be able to see how both sides (sales and marketing) work within a startup, giving me exposure to more sides of the business and also providing me opportunities to grow my career elsewhere within the company. Some people might think that a BDR role will limit you to a sales career, but it helps you learn about the industry and get a better understanding of the actual product. The versatility can allow you to move into other areas of the business if you are interested.
Q: What would be your top advice for anyone looking to start a career in sales?
A: Don’t be afraid of rejection, it is going to happen to you in any career path you go down whether it’s sales, marketing, customer success, etc. You get thick skin pretty quickly, so I wouldn’t let that discourage you.
The customers we are selling to, really do need the product, and you’re not trying to sell people on something they don’t need.
As a BDR that’s part of the job, to make sure someone is a good fit for the product, if it’s a company that you don’t think is going to need the product, you’re not going to try and sell them something they don’t need. It will waste both of your time. Overall, I would say the two things would be, don't be afraid of rejection, and don’t think that a sales role is necessarily only trying to win something over on someone.
Q: Are there any challenges you’ve faced in your career and how have you overcome them?
A: The main one would be time management. Apptega is the first real job I have had in the corporate world aside from some side jobs and internships in college. Time management was a big thing for me, learning how to handle the workload of the daily 9 to 5, was a struggle at first. Coming from college, where it is just about managing classes and tests, and it does help to a certain extent, however corporate day-to-day life is a lot different.
One thing that has helped, has been to plan my weeks out, week by week. I spend 30 minutes a day writing in my daily planner, so I can block off certain hours for my day. Sometimes it is hard to stick to the schedule, but having the schedule there is a reminder of what I need to get done by the end of the day. The actual process of checking little boxes on paper really helps me focus on certain tasks and make sure they get done by the end of the week.
Q: Did anyone in your life influence or inspire you in choosing your career path?
A: My dad definitely inspired me to get into sales, to some capacity. He worked in life insurance sales for most of his career. Growing up I was exposed to what it was like to be in sales and while you will have to work hard to meet your goals and be successful in your career, you’re not completely engulfed with the workload. My dad was still able to coach my baseball teams, go on trips, and do all the other things you do in life. It seemed like a career where you could balance your work and life.
Q: How do you stay up to date with the cybersecurity industry? Any favorite news source you’d like to share?
A: MSSP Alert is probably the one I frequent the most. It has all the different news on cyberattacks going on around the world, especially with all the current stuff going on in Russia and Ukraine right now, there are all sorts of cyber warfare. It helps me understand more of what our customers face and it keeps me up to date not only things I am curious about, but on what is happening in the world. MSSP Alert also talks about different mergers and news within the industry, all good things to know for keeping up with current events.
Q: Outside of work, what are some other things that you’re passionate about?
A: I like to play basketball a lot. I actually got done with a recreational league that some high school friends and I would play in every Saturday, which is a lot of fun. I like being outdoors and hiking. I was president of the outdoors club in high school.
I’m also really passionate about sports in general. I've been buying and selling sports cards since I was 5 years old. I have my little online store where I post my listings and I go to card shows some weekends. I’m passionate about buying, selling, trading, and collecting sports cards.
Q: What is something people don’t know about you?
A: My granddad played for the Minneapolis Lakers, He played for them in the 1950s which later turned into the Los Angeles Lakers. So I like to say that he played for the Lakers, the same franchise. That’s probably where my love for basketball stems from, as a little kid seeing pictures of him in the Lakers uniform, and playing in the NBA was pretty cool. So that’s something that not a lot of people know about me.
Q: Who is your modern-day hero? Why?
My dad, growing up, was a really great dad. He worked hard to provide for us. He went through a lot of tough times in life, so it’s been inspiring to see how hard he’s worked. Even during all the tough times, he always stayed super positive and always put his kids first.
Q: Where is your happy place in Atlanta?
A: The Battery and the Braves stadium. I miss Turner Field but I’ve had a ton of fun in recent years going to Braves games and hanging out at the bars and restaurants at the Battery. Even when it’s the offseason, I still like to go down there and hang out, it’s a really cool environment. I’m excited for the Braves games coming up. I’ll probably spend as much time as I can down there. That’s my happy place. I’ve lived in Atlanta my whole life, and the World Series this past October was one of the best times I’ve had in Atlanta.
Are you looking to jump-start your career in cybersecurity? Check out our careers page for open roles.