Spotlight | Miguel Rangel
October’s spotlight is on one of our newly added colleagues in our Enterprise Solutions group. He is originally from Dolores Hidalgo, Guanajuato, the Cradle of Mexican Independence as he proudly states.
Meet Miguel Angel Rangel, or as some of his friends call him, Migue. Miguel is a Communication and Information Technology Engineer who graduated from the Universidad Tecnológica del Norte de Guanajuato. At the age of 23, he is a Web Developer at Mayan Technologies Inc., where his main responsibility is creating customizations for Acumatica ERP.
Miguel considers himself a problem solver. He helps people obtain fast and accurate solutions to their problems on enterprise-level software.
We started the interview with a set of personal questions to find out more about his background, what he is passionate about, and what inspires him.
What was your dream profession growing up?
Since I was a kid, I was always interested in robotics and automating things. I wanted to study biomedical engineering or biomechanics, so I could build prostheses.
Who in your life has inspired you most?
I think it has changed over time, more recently, the person who has inspired me the most is a YouTuber. His name is Javier Santaolalla, he is a PhD in Physics of particles and a Telecommunications Engineer. Although he is now retired, he used to be a science promoter, mainly of theoretical physics and he is also one of the founders of ‘Big Van Ciencia’, a multidisciplinary program intended for young people, teachers and academics that looks to wake up interest on science.
Miguel told us the reason why Javier Santaolalla inspires him goes beyond the information he shares. The YouTuber constantly inspires and motivates his followers to work hard by reminding them that not every great scientific discovery necessarily comes from the highest spheres, and anyone can be the source of a future scientific breakthrough.
If you could acquire a new talent out of the blue, what would it be?
I think it would be learning everything about mechanics. As I mentioned before, I really like robotics, and I have programming knowledge, but I am missing the mechanics’ side of the equation in order to reach a point where they both can be combined.
What’s one piece of advice you wish you’d gotten sooner?
Investing, no doubt about it. In 2015 I started to hear a lot about Bitcoin, and I liked reading articles about it. Back then, bitcoin cost nearly nothing, between $200 and $300 Mexican Pesos. I always tried to have savings I could use to buy bitcoins however, at that time, I was very young and did not have a credit card, which was the only way to buy. Currently, a bitcoin is worth a little more than 1 million pesos. I wish I had known back then how important it is to invest.
After opening up about his personal life, we went on to talk about his professional career. He told us about his professional beginnings, his current work life, and what his plans are.
What do you do at Mayan Technologies?
I translate customer needs that are not included out-of-box in the Acumatica ERP software and turn them into new functionalities. For example, I am currently developing a customization for one of our clients that needed a way for their employees to report the time spent on different tasks so I worked on adding a way to record time in a more efficient way.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
I enjoy those situations where something unexpectedly gets complicated. Getting stuck, or reaching a wall, forces me to look for new ways of doing things, learning new things, and exploring other options. There is nothing like the rewarding feeling of finding a solution to a problem.
What was your first job?
My first formal job was an Information Technology internship, where I worked on small developments. Prior to my internship, I did some tutoring which I guess could count as an informal job.
What is it like working at Mayan Technologies Inc.?
I would describe it as smooth and busy. There is more than enough work to go around. I mean, there is always something to do, but at the same time, we all have a clear work plan to avoid the pressures of micromanaging, such as someone requesting updates at all hours or pressuring to meet changing deadlines.
What Are Your Future Career Goals?
I want to diversify my source of income so that in 20 years, I can work as a researcher at a university. While keeping programming and developing new technologies as a hobby of mine.
We know Covid-19 has caused many changes to our daily lives, both personally and professionally. To touch a bit on this subject, we asked Miguel about what has changed for him personally since the pandemic started and how he is getting used to working remotely and having it become the new normal.
What did you take for granted pre-pandemic and really appreciate now?
Being able to go out. Before Covid-19, I used to go on many mini-trips to nearby cities, either to visit new places or just to revisit the places I love. However, now it is much more complicated. We always need to keep an eye on the epidemiological "traffic lights" to determine whether we can safely go out.
Note: Mexico’s federal government has used a four-tiered biweekly traffic light monitoring system to alert residents to the epidemiological risks of COVID-19 and provide guidance on restrictions on certain activities in each of the country’s states. Click here for more information.
Covid-19 changed the way teams work and communicate. What has been the most challenging part of having to work remotely?
Communication. I was used to the fact that if there was a problem or had a question, you could always consult with those sitting right next to you. Now, it has become more complicated to have quick, clear, and direct communication with those working with you in order to solve a problem. Now, to talk to someone on your team you must first send them a message to see if they are available and schedule time, and that has lengthened the communication and response time.
Miguel also commented that he believes that despite all the negative things that Covid-19 has brought, there are also some positives. Among them is that it has been possible to see that it is not essential for all of us to be physically present at an office to make things work. He remarked that currently, we have many communication tools that make it easier for many jobs to be performed remotely, and companies are quickly adapting to this new model.
Before ending this month's Spotlight article, we asked him a couple of "Would you rather" questions.
Would you rather live in a remote destination or the heart of a metropolitan city?
I would prefer something remote since I get really annoyed by big cities.
Would you rather be able to breathe underwater or fly?
Would you rather be able to talk with the animals or speak all foreign languages?
Talk to animals.
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 they open up about their personal life.
Stay tuned for next month's Spotlight article.
CAM, Financial Consultant