My name is Austin Newman and am one of the Account Managers at SeisWare. I have worked at SeisWare for almost 7 years now with just over 2 of those years in my current role.
How I got here looks a lot more like a seismic trace than a straight line. As I finished high school, I had zero clue what career I wanted to pursue. Geophysics certainly was not on my Ground Penetrating Radar. I knew I wanted to continue to learn but felt overwhelmed with the possibilities that would help shape my future. After receiving my final exam back from my Physics 30 teacher, he bluntly suggested “Austin, you’re good at physics so why don’t you go into physics?” The strong logic that you would expect from a physics teacher was certainly there, but I could not help but think a degree in physics may be less exciting than a degree in paint drying dynamics. As I dug deeper, I discovered Geophysics, a diverse program that had great career opportunities in the province of Alberta. Two weeks prior to starting University, I had my first encounter with Spontaneous Potential and changed my major from a Biochemistry major into Geophysics.
At the University of Alberta, I learned about the broad scope of work that Geophysics encompassed. What I found most interesting was the creativity and imagination involved. Solving inverse problems incorporating mathematics, physics, and earth sciences was thought provoking and often required out of the box thinking. Most importantly, while awakening my creative skill set, I developed great friendships with the small, close-knit team in the Geophysics program. Further, I learned to appreciate the different viewpoints on tackling the diverse challenges presented to us. As I progressed into the professional world, I learned this sense of comradery and community truly was special to the Geoscience field.
I joined SeisWare in 2014 in a Support role, where I was fortunate to work closely with our users and support (clearly a well named department) them achieving their goals using our software. In the Spring of 2019, I was given a gentle nudge by our encouraging executive team that a move to the Sales team could be a great fit for me and the company. Admittingly, I was reluctant to move into a sales role from a more technical role as I knew the stigma and reputation attached to it. After more self-reflection than a 3D survey, I decided that this could potentially be an opportunity to step out of my comfort zone and grow my skill set. As I began to understand how the sales processes centered around SeisWare’s values, I discovered that sales was not about convincing people to buy something at all. Rather, it centered around understanding people’s challenges and focusing on how to help them move forward, regardless if it involved using our software going forward or not. This wasn’t about charisma or cheesy, cliché expressions but curiosity and being open to new and innovative ways to solve often complex challenges. It required much of the same creative and analytical problem-solving skills that I had appreciated throughout my Geophysical studies and career to that point.
Since then, I’ve been fortunate to meet and learn from many Geoscientists across our industry. The common denominator in every experience isn’t just the tremendous knowledge of the earth’s subsurface but the incredible passion for Geoscience. Few professions I believe can rival the infectious enthusiasm I am lucky enough to see every week.
When I’m not working, in the summertime you can catch me biking through the Rockies, playing any sport with a ball or in the park nose deep into a piece of non-fiction with a good coffee in hand. In the winter I’ll be downhill or cross-country skiing or complaining that my beloved Oilers are underachieving…again. Always next year, right?
Thanks for reading! If you would like to connect with me on LinkedIn, feel free! I love meeting new people – in person and virtually.
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