Succeeding in tech
Polyglotism opened many doors for Mario; learning languages like Scala and Python opened the opportunity for him to develop his Big Data and Data Science skills.
Allowing himself to fail was another thing that helped.
Machine Learning was a bit difficult for him, and it required a total change in thinking from the programming perspective. It took about a year to let this new paradigm sink in to get more familiar in this area. He often abandoned the whole venture and forgot about it for weeks, but the trick was that he was always getting back to it and improving one step at a time.
What do you think the future will bring?
Data will be part of many projects in the years to come, with new opportunities and adding the finishing touch to current projects. Part of my job is to smooth this integration with other disciplines. We see an increasing awareness from companies about the necessity to move their products to the cloud and then add new features that will require expertise in Data. Another hot topic gaining traction is ethics around data, including how we build AI products. Standards definition around Ethics will be a must for anyone who wants to be competitive in the area.
Big Data, and its “new-kids-on the block”: artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) or automation for big data, quickly captured the minds of both the technical and business world.
Sometimes being too hard on myself was more an impediment than anything else. Sometimes I'm a slow learner; in these cases, what I do is just to get into "I'll get there eventually" mode instead of “I can’t do this s…!”.
What would you advise somebody who wants to follow a technical career path?
Constantly challenge yourself, find your blind spots and work on them.
For every solution, you figure out, think of at least two other ways to solve the problem.
Choose your weapon (programming language/paradigm, cloud provider, or tool), get good at it, but learn at least another one, just out of curiosity. So, if you like Java, try out learning C# or Python, if you like OOP, play around a bit with FP, and so on.
Advice for building career paths in general
Mario believes in using the CORE (Call, Own, Response, Execute) process tool. Whatever career path you want to pursue, you need a plan, and CORE will make that work easier. The CORE is simple to use, and it is a tool that is very embedded in Endava’s culture that will give you a clear communication channel between you and the company when you start building your career at Endava.
Mario is one of the names that pops up constantly during our Endava recognition programs, and he was a winner of YZA (Your Zone Awards, an internal program for recognizing talent) last year. What do other colleagues say about him?
“Mario proved an outstanding commitment to the data discipline. His initiatives around nurturing data competencies in the cloud are out of the box, creating a healthy environment, and promoting his team's growth and technical excellence. Mario is open and thoughtful, and the results of his actions are visible within the region. He managed to double his team in less than one year and to raise the seniority level. For example, Mario is a dynamic promotor of knowledge sharing, and he is running a recurrent pass-it-on (knowledge sharing) series. He is organising study groups for proactively growing specific technical knowledge (like Databricks), and he is also increasing the awareness about the existing data skills across the region.” - Adriana Calomfirescu, Group Head of Data Delivery