Lisa Bracegirdle's story

Solution Architect

You’ve been at Tempo for two years. Can you tell us about your team and your role within it?

I’m a Solution Architect within the Sales team at Tempo, and I support prospective customers that come in to evaluate our Tempo apps. I guide them as they get to know the product and see if it suits their business requirements. That means giving demos, answering questions, and helping to find solutions to whatever problem they’re having. 

Sometimes I work with enterprise-level companies with complex requirements, and sometimes I work with smaller companies. So that’s what I’m here for: to support potential customers in seeing whether our products will work for them and their needs.

You started in Inside Sales before becoming a Solution Architect. What has your journey at Tempo been like?

I’m very fortunate for this stepping stone into Tempo. As an Inside Sales Rep, I would support the Sales team with sending emails to prospects after they attended different shows across the country. I didn’t have a Jira background, but I had a Sales background, and that position allowed me to slowly learn about Jira. I love that I know about Jira now and how our solutions integrate with it. 

I like that I’ve moved up in the company in acquiring new skills and being closer to the customer. I like being really up front and talking to people, so it’s a cool place that I’m at right now.

Did you have a technical background before Tempo? Or did you learn along the way?

With the exception of one introductory MS-DOS course in CEGEP, in University I followed a Commerce path. I fell into technical roles when I entered the high-tech software industry 20 years ago. I sold maintenance and SGI technical support contracts to my accounts, which taught me a lot about hardware components for IRIX, Octanes and Linux systems. So that’s how I grew into being more detail-oriented and learning how things work. 

With Tempo, the newest thing that I’m learning is Jira and how to accurately describe different functionalities to prospective customers via email and sales tickets. I want to make sure I write as clearly as possible to explain how our product works. So it’s a neat new skill.

What’s a typical day at Tempo look like for you?

A typical day starts with me checking whether there have been any sales and then updating my sales pipeline so that my boss has access to new sales numbers immediately. After that, I check my calendar for what first meetings I might have to attend, because it changes every day. Throughout the day, I juggle doing demos for our prospect clients as well as checking my inbox, because I get a lot of support questions from people I demo to. For those people who haven’t had a demo with me, I encourage them to book one so I can show them how the products work in action. 

What are your biggest challenges and how do you manage them?

The day goes by so fast. It’s great! That said, I don’t have enough time to reply to every email, but I try my best. If there’s more than three demos a day, that adds a lot of work, which means I’m less available to answer support tickets that come in from Tempo evaluators. To manage my time, I try to email my contacts right after a demo with ‘Getting started’ documentation and I also share links to our free 30-day trials. 

I make sure to prioritize based on what’s most important, but it can definitely be a challenge with so many demands on my time. One strategy to manage my time is to block out one hour increments in my calendar to nurture my sales pipeline, catch up on emails, or even set time aside to learn what’s new with our solutions so that I can demo them to the next prospective customer.  

What’s so great about being a Solution Architect?

What I love so much about my job is that it’s international. I’m a people-person, and I enjoy meeting people from all over the world and getting a sense of who they are and learning about their culture. I know it’s cliché to say it, but it’s not about selling, it’s about building relationships. That’s what I like about this type of career.

I am truly fortunate to work with such an amazing team, I think Tempo really is about great people. The support I have received from all the extended teams has been outstanding. I loved the dynamic of everyone in the Montreal office when we were all together before COVID. I miss our shared Wednesday morning breakfasts! I also loved meeting the different people from Iceland and visiting the office in Sweden for training, where much of the Sales team is based. I find people super open and helpful from my experience. 

What’s your favourite part of your work?

I enjoy being a trusted advisor, and demoing around the problems that people are trying to solve. I try to think inside a potential customer’s shoes. Why do they want this solution? What should I really be showing to be more engaging than a dry demo? That’s what I try to do on a daily basis: to get better at story-telling and making it fun. 

Whenever I’ve given a great demo, I can feel it. I feel when it flows and in the way prospects interact with me. I like to always feel that way on each demo that I give. Which isn’t always the case!

How would you describe the company culture at Tempo?

It’s very collaborative. When I started to learn more about Tempo’s products as a Solution Architect, I was so impressed with how everyone on Slack was able to work together to help me with my questions. Sometimes I didn’t know if I should already know an answer, so it was a little intimidating putting a question out there for the whole company to see.

What I noticed is that people just came back and answered my questions. They really took the time to explain how the products work and included links to documentation. I was thoroughly impressed that everybody was there to help each other. From all the offices, it was great how helpful people were. And they’ve made me who I am today, a lot better at selling Tempo. 

How did Tempo support you during COVID?

Yes, the shift to my home dining room table! When COVID started, the CEO said right out, we don’t expect you to work eight hours a day if your children are at home, for instance. I think that message helped me a lot. I heard what Tempo said and I’m making sure that I treat myself fairly as well and that I’m not doing too much overtime. I’m now joining the virtual yoga classes that I used to skip and I’m inviting my friends and family. I think we really need to take care of ourselves and I think Tempo gave out a really good message.

What are some of the perks of working at Tempo?

Definitely Tempo’s yoga lessons, I make sure I attend those. In Montreal, we get an annual allocation towards health-related expenses, like the gym or exercise equipment. There’s just always something going on, even during COVID. Recently we got an expense allocation for Uber Eats and had virtual team meals together. I found that really generous. We also have an informal book club in the Sales team. I guess that’s not a Tempo perk, but it’s nice!

What else? Our all-company trip to Mont-Tremblant was wonderful. That was our chance for all the global offices to get together and meet under one roof. I loved how impressed everyone from Iceland was with Mont-Tremblant. They were really happy to come to Canada and we all really got to know each other and spend some time together. 

What advice would you give others seeking to work in your field? What strengths or characteristics do you think are important?

I think you need to be really motivated and be a people-person. You also need to be hungry to learn and adaptable. You need to be able to bounce around from doing one thing to another quickly. I’m juggling a lot of different aspects of my job, and working with a lot of different internal Tempo teams. I could be in the middle of replying to a complex support question, but then I see in a few minutes I have to jump on a call. So I think you need to be mindful of time constraints, keep your goals in mind, but more than anything, be a team player.