Aptitive’s data consultants embrace their careers on their own terms. They have access to the many rewards of a technology consulting career – challenging projects, rapid career growth, and a competitive salary – without the drawbacks typically synonymous with consulting. To read more about the perks of an Aptitive career, head to our Careers page.
Each month, we’re shining a spotlight on some of Aptitive’s data consultants to learn about things like how they got started in data consulting, how they have benefited from their Aptitive careers, and who they are when they aren’t at work. This month, we’re spotlighting Andrew McComb and Schafer Gizel.
Andrew McComb | Consultant
Hometown: Sycamore, IL
Alma mater & major: Northern Illinois University, information systems and data analytics
In 5 words or fewer, describe what Aptitive means to you. Technical experts helping clients succeed!
What is your favorite benefit that Aptitive offers? Aptitive supports its employees’ charitable endeavors, including my involvement as a Chicago Zoological Society Associate.
What’s your favorite part of your role at Aptitive? My favorite part of my role is sharing solutions with the client that will make their day-to-day work easier.
What is one professional skill you’re currently working on? After working mainly with cloud technologies, I’m working towards pursuing AWS and Azure certifications.
What is something that recently made you smile? Recently I was able to travel to Morocco, and seeing the night sky over the Sahara had me beaming from ear to ear.
Where will we find you outside of work? You can find me performing improv comedy around Chicago, attending indie concerts, or going to a museum!
Schafer Gizel | Senior Consultant
Hometown: Barrington, IL
Alma mater & major: Washington University in St. Louis, mathematics with minors in chemistry and linguistics
What is your favorite part of your role at Aptitive? Having the opportunity to interface with executive stakeholders. It is really impactful being able to advise and influence change with the top levels of the organization.
Who has influenced you most when it comes to how you approach your work? My coworker Greg Marsh taught me very early on to fail quickly. With so many different technologies and architecture choices, the ability to try things, keep what works, and give up what doesn’t is very helpful when you’re building out a solution.
What do you wish more people knew about technical consulting? Anyone can get into it, regardless of background. I’ve worked with brilliant people – some with information systems degrees and some with psychology degrees. Technical skills can be learned, reasoned through, and Googled. To succeed in technical consulting, I think it’s more valuable to be a strong communicator and problem-solver.
What advice would you give to someone starting their career in consulting? Confidence is key – confidence in relaying your opinions and recommendations but also having the confidence to admit that your approach or solution may have been a misstep. It is easy to get caught up in the trap of being perfect when people are paying you to be the expert, but acknowledging your limitations in skill set or experience can save you a lot of headache when you’re trying to deliver complex client solutions.
What is the ideal start to my day? Large cold brew and a chocolate-frosted cake donut from the local coffee shop. It’s been my go-to every day for the past six months, only missing it when I’m physically outside of the state.
Do you have a hidden talent? Most of my peers know that I play bass and piano. A little less-well-known is that I’m a pretty dangerous accordion player.
Shelby Kling is the director of marketing for Aptitive. She spends her days developing campaigns to share Aptitive’s data and analytics expertise and to bring awareness to the solutions Aptitive and their technology partners can build.