Symphony Solutions strives to build a strong narrative of professionalism, agility and innovation. The driving force for that are Symphony people who form the core of the company, reflecting its distinct culture and strong values. Oleg Chekan, Head of technical Pre-sale and Service Delivery Manager at Symphony Krakow office, started his professional path well over a decade ago. Having come a long way, from a QA to SDM, Oleg brought his invaluable insights and experience to Symphony Solutions in 2018, since then becoming an integral part of the company. We have asked Oleg to share with us a few thoughts on his vast background in the IT industry, moving from Belarus to Krakow, tips on adapting to remote work, and even his newly found passion for playing the piano. 1. After so many years in the industry, is it hard to find motivation in your work? Not at all. When you are constantly learning new things and trying different roles, there’s not much time to stagnate. Here at Symphony, my main motivators are Machine Learning and hands-on work. 2. Now that you’re the Head of Technical pre-sales, what do you enjoy the most about your job? Ability to learn about different business domains and their needs. Getting acquainted with different technologies. 3. You moved to Krakow from Belarus a few years ago. What was the most surprising discovery in Poland? Pirogi Russkie are not the same as Pil’meni. 4. With the recent changes in the world, have you noticed an impact on your life and work? Not that much in terms of work, as I had a remote team a year before Covid and already got used to WFH. There was an impact on our personal life though, as we were not able to travel much and visit our parents in Belarus. A year into the lockdown, I can say that I definitely want one more room in my apartment, but I can’t do anything about it 🙂 And I have started to use online shopping much more frequently. 5. People usually find it not easy to keep a work-life balance. How do you manage to do that? In the context of WFH, my go-to three tips would be: Having a dedicated room/space for work Dedicated hours for work with fixed start and end time Spending time with family during the breaks 6. At last week’s Online Corporate party, you amazed everyone when you performed a piece of music on the piano. What was that piece and how long do you play? That was Claude Debussy’s Clair de Lune. I’ve decided to start learning piano 1 year ago, since we already had lessons organized for my son, who started 1.5 years ago. I’ve decided to join to challenge him a bit. I’ve actually studied at a music school when I was a kid, I was playing button accordion. (I still have a photo with the accordion somewhere). I’m playing a mixture of classics like Vivaldi, Liszt, Debussy, Tchaikovsky, and contemporary music (AC/DC, OST from Witcher, Movies/Anime, etc.). 7. Coming from your vast professional experience, what would you say is important to grow as an expert? Never stop learning new things. Go out of your comfort zone and do something that you are not used to doing. 8. Are there any podcasts, books, or inspirations you swear by? I would recommend Gerald Weinberg’s books An Introduction to General Systems Thinking and Becoming a Technical Leader. As for more of a “light” read, I’d say The Power of Full Engagement by James E. Loehr and Tony Schwartz. 9. What will be your next country after the quarantine is over? Belarus, Austria, Croatia. 10. If you weren’t in IT, what career and/or life path would you pursue? A chief cook in a family restaurant, perhaps. Want to learn the essence of Symphony Solutions that are Symphonians? Stay tuned and look out for more interviews in the near future! But, for now, get to know our Symphonian Aleksandar Gacevski and read about his insights here.