On the lighter side of things, we ask Carla Garcia, Sales and New Business Director, Zoho Latin America, what makes her tick.
What would you describe as your most memorable achievement?
I have had several memorable personal and professional achievements. However, if I had to focus on the most memorable one, professionally speaking, I would select the opening of the Mexico office, where I worked alongside senior executives within Zoho. Zoho Mexico currently has more than 100 employees, and it is the central office where all LATAM customers receive Spanish help.
What first made you think of a career in technology?
Technology constantly evolves and innovates in many aspects. Therefore, I chose this field as I continuously like to grow and be informed about trends worldwide. Another reason is that with constant changes, one is always energized, which motivates one to keep up and experience efficiency and human intelligence in all shapes and forms.
What style of management philosophy do you employ in your current position?
Zoho is very different from any tech company. We are seen as the purple cows of the market as we usually tend to do everything else others do not do.
The company philosophy has inspired my philosophy in my current position. While numbers are essential for us, our sales reps must gain their own experience to become good leaders. Our mission with our customers is to provide the best tools and customer experience at unbeatable pricing.
A simple way to see it is that their life worth is powered by our life work, and since our life work is what we value the most, we make sure what you get from Zoho is the best in all aspects.
What do you think is the current hot technology conversation topic?
With everything moving to the cloud, privacy and security are of utmost importance, but it is often a downplayed topic.
Any company’s worst fear is being hacked or exposed, and there should be a set of requirements every company should meet to protect privacy and security.
How do you deal with stress and relax outside of the office?
I enjoy spending time with my son and husband when I am not at work. I also enjoy volunteering in my community and at church events. Giving back to the most vulnerable takes my mind off the daily duties and constantly inspires me to become a better person and be grateful for all I have.
If you could go back and change one career decision, what would it be?
I would have chosen to go to school for a business degree and not an education degree. Although my motives behind choosing my degree were based on the changes I wanted to make in this field, I feel a degree in business would have kicked started my career in sales and would have been taken more seriously in other sales companies.
What do you currently identify as the top investment areas in your industry?
Investing in research and development must be something all companies should focus on as you will be up-to-date and relevant, allowing you to offer state-of-the-art technology to customers constantly.
In addition, companies should look into protecting customer info against any breach or hack. Also, some companies have started to invest more in employee experience as it is costly to lose employees.
What are the specific challenges of the region when implementing new technologies in Latin America?
LATAM’s most common challenges are more educational resources and inclusive education. Another challenge would be the cultural and human aspect of fear of change and, in many cases, the lack of investment in researching and developing specific markets.
What changes have you seen in your job role in the last year, and how do you think they will develop in the next 12 months?
In the last year, I have experienced many minor and significant changes. On one end, we all shared the importance of adapting to fast-changing market demands and needs and believe this will continue in the future.
The buyer industry is also moving towards a more technology-centric approach, and social selling and account-based marketing are still top strategies but applied according to this principle.
In 2023, I expect to see organizations let go of some previously tried-and-true ways of selling and communicating with customers as they move in this direction! AI will become more common as it continues to help improve efficiency and productivity.
What advice would you give someone aspiring to a C-level position in your industry?
Always learn from every experience. Research and read a lot and be interested in topics that have nothing to do with your field or expertise. Knowing several topics and industries will help you widen your eyes and thoughts on many scenarios you will face as a leader. Also focus on creating leaders along the way but, most importantly, always stay humble.Click below to share this article