Employee Spotlight: Kurt Zikaras
From triathletes to restaurant owners, Impel has some amazing employees in its ranks. We’re introducing you to a new employee every month as part of our Employee Spotlight Series, giving you an inside look at our charismatic culture. This month, we’re introducing you to Kurt Zikaras, Lead Engineer and Storm Chaser Award winner.
What do you do at Impel?
I am a lead engineer on our tech team. I manage the Level 3 Support team, whose primary responsibility is handling customer onboarding tasks that require software development.
Which core value resonates most with you?
If I had to pick just one it would be Relationships. Getting to know new people and collaborating with other teams throughout Impel is one of my favorite things to do.
You were recently awarded with Impel’s first-ever Storm Chaser Award. Congratulations! A recurring theme in your nominations was that you’re proactive in finding solutions. How have you trained yourself to be proactive?
Prior to working at Impel I worked in several very hands-on end user/customer support roles. I think this experience exposed me to many ambiguous situations with interesting problems to solve. This ultimately made me a bit more proactive in trying to solve small problems before they become large problems. Plus, I really enjoy writing code and building things. Automating redundant tasks and solving technical problems allows me to do that.
What is your favorite initiative that you’ve worked on at Impel?
I’m fortunate to be a part of our Ops Council, which is responsible for improving operating processes within the organization. We recently rolled out a new onboarding and training program for new employees that I am super proud to have worked on.
What are three career lessons you’ve learned at Impel?
Recruiting: While working at Impel I was tasked with building a team for the first time and have had the opportunity to recruit, hire, and train several team members.
Project Management: I’ve designed and managed a few small improvements to some of our internal tooling over the years and I hope to work on some bigger projects soon!
Debugging: An important part of being a developer isn’t just writing code, but being able to read and debug code that has already been written. I’ve gained a ton of experience doing this while working at Impel.
What do you like to do when you’re not at the office?
When I’m not at the office or working you’ll find me hanging out with my wife and daughter, working on music, or working out.
You recently performed a rendition of Billy Withers’ “Lean on Me” with a few other Impel team members. Tell us more about your life as a musician.
In my late teens and early twenties, I played in several punk rock bands. We toured the USA and Canada a few times playing everywhere from college house basements to festivals and venues like South by Southwest in Austin, Texas and the Whiskey a Go Go in Hollywood.
Kurt brings an energy to Impel that drives innovation and relationships. His willingness to help and go above and beyond is what so many of his coworkers love about him. Follow us on the Impel Facebook and Impel Instagram pages for updates. You won’t want to miss next month’s spotlight on Software Engineer, Farwa Iftikhar.