Finding the job your heart loves

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Finding a job that you love is a search of a lifetime. We know this first-hand, with many of our teammates exploring their opportunities and trying different roles across their Interactio journey.

For some, they instantly come into a position that they love. For others, it takes time and an incredible learning process to figure out where they fit in the growing puzzle of a team. 

One of those “others” is Albert Palau, our Product Owner. Since the start of his career at Interactio, he has grown across two departments, from Technical Customer Success Manager to Senior Engineer in Technical Support, and from Junior Product Owner to Product Owner in the Media Team, until he found the position he enjoys the most. We asked him to tell us more about what it means to always look for the next big thing and what it feels like to finally find it. 

Albert: Finding what your heart loves

I always gravitated towards more technical jobs: I’m an electrical engineer by education and a tech person by heart. But even knowing that, I’m still no stranger to looking for a job that I truly love.

I am originally from Catalonia, Spain, but I have been living in Lithuania for eight years now.  Back in Spain, I used to work as an electrical engineer, building biogas power plants, which I liked a lot because it helped the environment. 

When I moved to Lithuania, I did everything in between: the language barrier was a lot to handle, so I started out in insurance but quickly figured that it wasn’t where my soul was at. I transitioned to a technical support position for another company but lacked a connection to the product.

Discovering Interactio 

That’s when, in 2019, I discovered Interactio and applied for the position of Technical Support Manager. I saw the product and knew it required a lot of traveling – and that was it for me. Apart from exploring everything new in tech, I love finding new places around the globe! 

That’s how my Interactio journey started in the most literal sense. During my first week, I was already in Rome, working on supporting my first event. If I had to describe what happened next in one word, it would be a “marathon.”  A marathon of traveling, learning, and everything else. I even made a journey around the world: from Lithuania, I flew to support an event in Hong Kong, then to Dallas for another client, and then back to our HQ in Lithuania.  

But then, of course, everything changed when 2020 and COVID-19 came around. From traveling to a country every week (or sometimes every day), countless hours on the plane, and even more hours supporting events on-site, our team was stranded at home, and the future was uncertain. 

I saw how our RSI solution evolved and helped implement it, from supporting the European Parliament to onboarding the European Commission and many other large institutions. There I was, with four separate computers and headsets, listening to more than four languages at once, monitoring our institutional clients, and making sure everything runs smoothly. 

Transitioning to Product 

Those were important, history-changing moments when the interaction between developers, customers, and the product created Interactio we know today. I liked my tech support position but giving feedback after the event was what I loved the most. I thought, “If I could do this all the time – it would be awesome!” 

So, when I saw that there’s a job opening for a Product Owner position, I read the description and said to myself, “Oh my god, that’s the fun part of tech support!” And the rest is history. 

I spent some time half and half in each position but recently moved to be a Product Owner in a Media Team full-time. I’m finally able to share my thoughts and influence what the product looks like.

I have an idea about how to solve a problem, present it to the team, we work on it together, and then I actually see it implemented. Interactio product becomes a living and breathing thing that you nurture, create, and help move forward every day. The learning and transition process was hard, and don’t get me wrong, it’s still challenging. But it’s equally as fulfilling and fun.

Instantly getting into a position that you know you love is not realistic, at least it wasn’t for me. But I ended up in a team where the company culture is not only all about honesty and success but also about nurturing experiences. From the beginning, you have 100% of your colleagues’ trust; you don’t have to fight for it or earn it. It’s in your hands to make it work, whatever it is. 

I figured it out pretty quickly, in my very first event with Mary Kay, which I supported with Henrikas, our Co-Founder and CEO. He was much more experienced than me, but he said to me, “We used to do it that way, but it’s up to you; you’re the one leading this project.” Even the CEO is completely open to your initiative, in fact, he expects it. Whatever works – works. We just need to make it a success.

What’s next?

My plan is to grow! In Product, the higher the position is, the more time frame through which you have to think changes. The core, more or less, stays the same, but for example, as a Product Owner, you have to think about current problems and short-term solutions. The Product Manager has to think more in the future, the Product Director even more so – years ahead. I would love to start thinking more long-term.

I remember when I joined Interactio and was doing the interview, I had a talk with Henrikas. I was still at my previous job, so we had a video call while I was outside the office. He asked me, “What would you do if you didn’t need money to live? Say, you took two years off and did all the traveling and entertainment there was to do. After that, what would you do?” 

I thought about that and answered, “I would like to solve problems.” Even at that starting point, I knew it would come down to thinking about problems and finding solutions. And that’s exactly what I’m doing now! It’s the first time in my life that I genuinely love what I do and what I’m working on. I think that I have found my place in my career. 

All my life, I worked at construction sites, in engineering, project design, telecommunications, logistics, insurance, but I never felt that I was actually enjoying it. At some point, I never thought I would find a position that I liked that much, but now I realize that Product positions were always there, waiting for me. They never caught my eye. However, here I am!

Henrikas asked me at the beginning about what I would like to ultimately do in life, and I ended up doing just that, a few years later, at Interactio. Could I predict that? Perhaps not. If you are seeking a job that you love, look for opportunities and let yourself explore, and you will find what you are searching for in the most unexpected place.

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Published on

Mar 18, 2022

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Albert Ibars Palau

Product Owner at Interactio

Albert is a Product Owner at our Product Development Team. After joining in 2019 as a Technical Customer Success Manager and supporting global events worldwide, he recently transitioned to a new role in Product. Motivated by his passion for technology and problem-solving, he is now shaping our RSI solution as a part of the Media Team.