Whether it be social, recreational, or professional, some of what represents me is here. Post a comment, or contact me at should you so desire.

The posts are in reverse chronological order, and are pegged by topic on the links to the left. For more of an introduction, please see the About this site page listed above.

Wednesday, 7 March 2018

Two Years at NSR!

Hello everyone! Thank you so much for stopping by! Today's post is all about my two years at Northern Sky Research, what I've learned, how I've been, and what lies ahead! Read on!

I've been wanting to write this post for a few weeks now, but work has been absolutely dominating my time. I recently finished Northern Sky Research's (NSR) 3rd Flat Panel Antennas report, and had quite a lot to do both pre- and post-launch. On top of that, I just wrapped up a consulting project on the Earth Observation market, and I've been preparing for the upcoming Satellite show in Washington, DC. (You may recall my post on this last year, with plenty of pictures! Also, I think that's enough links for now)

So, two years in, how are things going? Well, it's an ongoing process, as with all things, but I am certainly happier and more content than I have ever been.

The work itself is always interesting, challenging, and rewarding. For those unfamiliar, NSR is a leading satellite market research and consulting firm. Basically, if it involves space and/or satellites, we have analysts researching and forecasting the economical and technology trends involved in the business. As such, the job allows me to stay on top of the latest and greatest activities in space, while flexing my analytical skills in order to better understand the path ahead. So far, I have worked on reports focused on satellite Earth Observation, flat panel antennas, and Maritime, Land-mobile, and Government/Military satellite communications, as well as Big Data markets and ground communications systems. I have begun to take on more responsibilities through consulting projects, focusing and customizing research efforts to our clients' needs.

There is always something to learn, about the industry, about better practices, and about myself. Take, for example, the flat panel report. I spoke about it in my One Year at NSR post, but this was my first time completely leading the effort. Last year, I co-wrote the report, but this year, it was my responsibility alone. It was somewhat intimidating, as I had to learn the other half of the FPA business quickly, and I am not afraid to admit that I had some difficulties along the way. However, the NSR team is very supportive, and I am very happy with how the final result turned out. We are always looking for ways to expand and deepen our knowledge on these markets, and I am confident that this report continues that tradition. I have done this in a few ways at NSR, and it feels good to grow my own niche, my own corner of expertise from which to provide valuable market insights for the company.

The job offers interesting opportunities as well. Not only for learning new things, and meeting new people, but for traveling to events to showcase NSR's leadership. As I mentioned, I have been preparing for the Satellite show, one of the largest events in the industry, but I have also had the chance to represent NSR in Marseille, Hamburg, and Estonia, just this year alone!

For the past two years, I have been moving in a particular direction, that of a business professional, and the journey has been an interesting one. That is not to say that I ever considered myself "unprofessional", it's just I am enjoying the fact that things are becoming easier as I become accustomed to them. I used to fret over business attire, now I have a nice selection in my wardrobe. I used to stress over scheduling flights and accommodation, and while it's my least favourite part of the process, I've gotten much better at it. Of course, having a very supportive girlfriend, and a friend who is a travel agent helps a lot, but still, happy to have working support systems in place.

I've also begun giving back, in a way. I have helped present NSR to students at the International Space University (ISU), remaining open to answering questions regarding my experience with NSR, the ISU, and the industry in general. It has also been a good experience helping the newer hires at NSR, sharing with them my tips and strategies, and helping them avoid making the same mistakes or wasted effort I had in the past. 

I originally published this post without listing some of the things I've learned. That is not really in keeping with my style, so I'd like to add a few things I've learned here:

  • How to cold call/email people
    • See also, how to craft a perfectly concise, yet informative email that calls the reader to action, improving chances of response
  • How to present information in simple, yet visually compelling manner
    • Often, my default mood is "put it in a table", but I've gotten better at showcasing results
  • How to network, both online and in person
    • Haven't been "shy" in years, but it has become easier to spark conversation, helps when everyone at the event is semi-interested in the same business
  • How to synchronize work between offline and online storage, and across multiple files
    • Something I already "knew", but several issues have caused me to improve my knowledge here
  • How to be confident in my findings
    • Could talk about this all day, but basically, how to assure myself that my findings are based on assumptions, which are based on experience and expertise, and finally,
  • How to be confident in my expertise
    • Overcoming the Impostor Syndrome, believing in my ability and knowledge, and using it to support my work

I may talk more about this in a later post, but for now, I will just say that my work continues to challenge me, pushing me to grow and improve, while providing what I need in terms of productivity and security. It has been a fantastic two years at NSR, and I look forward to doing even more in the years ahead!

Thank you all very much for reading, I hope you enjoyed. Feel free to check out my other articles, sorted by topic on the left, or in reverse order below. Next article will be even more exciting, so exciting that I've already begin to write it! 

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