In this month's Spotlight, we took the time to learn a bit more about Gerardo Castillo. In his three-plus years of working at Mayan Technologies, he has very quickly built his reputation as “the man to call when you’re having IT problems”. As head of our IT department, all our team members have needed his expertise a time or two, and thankfully... he always has the answers.
Not only is Gerardo head of IT, but he is also provides support to administrative areas to ensure our internal processes are followed. To say he has a full schedule would be an understatement. Here at Mayan Technologies, we are so thankful for his hard work and dedication to the company.
Gerardo obtained a degree in Systems Administration from the School of Mechanical and Electrical Engineering of the Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León. From a young age, it was evident to him that he wanted to work in technology. By the age of 16, thanks to the support of his family, he was already an expert at fixing computers.
However, when he was just a child, Gerardo, or Tito, as his family calls him, dreamed of becoming a firefighter. "I do not remember exactly where that dream came from, but I do remember I had a lot of fire trucks, helmets, and suits," he says. As an adult, Gerardo still admires the job of a courageous firefighter and hopes to one day take a course to fulfill that childhood dream.
Our interview began with a few questions on a personal level, in which he talked about his family and those who have been inspirational in his life.
Who in your life has inspired you most?
My father taught me everything I know, he has always been my role model. My father is a resilient, self-taught man who never gives up. He taught me that if you do not know how to do something, you should do your research and try and try again until you get it right.
What is your favorite family tradition?
My favorite family tradition is the Christmas gift exchange because it is a great excuse to get the whole family together, bond, and sometimes give everyone a chuckle with the gag gifts some of us give each other.
What is one piece of advice you wish you had gotten sooner?
I wish someone had told me earlier that although life is beautiful, it is also full of setbacks. Especially when you grow up and have a family and responsibilities.
Have you got a family of your own?
Yes, I have a wife and an almost 8-year-old son.
Do you have any pets?
Yes, I have a 5-year-old dog that my aunt rescued from the street when he was a puppy. We named him Max because he resembles the character in the movie The Secret Life of Pets.
I wish someone had told me earlier that although life is beautiful, it is also full of setbacks.
After learning a little more about Gerardo's personal life, we proceeded with some
questions about his professional life.
What do you remember most about your first job?
My first job had a big impact on me. I was 18 years old and hired by a small technology company owned by a friend of the family. He allowed me to work part-time and develop myself in something I was about to start studying.
What is it like working at Mayan Technologies?
Inspiring. I have always been given total freedom to do the work at my discretion, which has made it possible for me and my manager to continue to develop the IT area.
What type of role do you want to take on after this one?
Fortunately, the company and my manager have given me the trust to grow within the company. I no longer hold the same position I did when I started three and a half years ago. I would love to continue to grow within the company when the time is right, I am always up for a challenge.
What do you do at Mayan Technologies?
As an IT and Admin Support Manager, I have several functions, among the most important are keeping track of the inventory and equipment allocation. I also ensure that the equipment is working at full capacity so that my colleagues do not have any inconvenience caused by a malfunction.
I am also the access administrator to the company's accounts and software. In addition to my IT responsibilities, I provide support to administrative areas to ensure our internal processes are followed.
What has been the most challenging part of working at Mayan Technologies?
The accelerated growth of the company has been challenging, as we have had to expand the company's departments and therefore improve existing processes and implement new ones. It has also meant making existing resources adapt to late needs, which has increased the workload.
What is the career highlight you are most proud of?
I have had several challenges throughout my professional career. However, I am most proud of having been able to develop an application or installing a complete server from scratch without having all the full-knowledge to do so, with a lot of effort, skill, and research I managed to succeed.
At Mayan Technologies, we became a fully remote team this year. With change sometimes come challenges, such as finding a balance between your professional and personal life, especially when your home is also your office.
When we asked Gerardo about his experience, he had this to say:
"I set up my workspace in a room that is fairly independent of the rest of the house. This has given me the privacy I need to concentrate on my tasks. However, it is complicated, especially when you have small children because it is difficult for them to understand the situation.”
He continued stating:
“On the other hand, having your work tools at home makes it tempting to work outside working hours. I always try to respect my family's time and the promises I make to my son, however, there are exceptions.
The key is to respect both your work time and your family's time, and if you are well organized, there shouldn't be any problems."
To wrap up the interview, we asked a few questions that helped us get to know Gerardo better. His answers showed us that for him, family is always the most important thing.
Do you collect anything?
At some point, I collected hot wheels. I bought those I liked or those I dreamed of having someday, however, with the arrival of my son, I lost all interest.
What is your favorite way to spend a day off?
I am a family person, so my favorite way to spend a day off is by doing some of our favorite activities together. We love going to the movies or spending a day at Fundidora Park and then grabbing a bite in that area of town.
What is your most prized possession, and why?
For me, the most valuable thing is my family and, especially, my son because he is where all my energies and efforts are placed. My family is my main driving force.
Where is the most interesting place you have been?
I enjoy traveling, unfortunately, I have not had many opportunities to travel abroad. But there is one place I always have in my mind, and in my heart, it is Puerto Vallarta because it is where I spent my honeymoon. I have great memories, and it is a special place for me.
Thank you for reading this month's Spotlight article, where featured team members provide insight into their job at Mayan Technologies and detail what their role encompasses while opening up about their personal life.
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