At ARInsights, we want to continue to introduce you to new faces who are helping drive success – both for our company and, most importantly, yours!
To that end, we recently chatted with Ben Weaver, a new sales development representative here and a former middle and high school math teacher. Read on to find out why sales and teaching are actually quite similar, what brought Ben to ARInsights and more.
Q: We understand you grew up in England. What brought you to the States?
Ben: My parents are actually from the Midwest, and I was born in Baltimore. Then, when I was almost 2, my family moved to the UK. I grew up there and came back to the United States for college — Williams College in Massachusetts. Since graduating, I’ve remained here in Massachusetts.
My family still lives in the UK. My parents have a flat in London and a cottage in Suffolk, and I make it back to see them several times a year.
Q: Tell us about your background. What did you do before ARInsights?
Ben: After graduating from Williams, I went into education. I taught math to middle schoolers and high schoolers in the Boston area. It’s something I’m passionate about, and even though I’ve changed career paths, I still do volunteer work in the area and mentor students.
Q: Does your experience as a teacher come in handy in sales?
Ben: Definitely! There are a lot of transferable skills. For example, you have to ask the right questions of your prospect (or student) to guide them to the answer.
You also need to be able to get people excited. I found that sometimes at 8:30 a.m. on a Monday, the kids weren’t as motivated to learn about math as they were at other times. So, you have to be animated, you have to know how to carry a conversation, and you have to know how to hold the attention of a crowd — like in sales, too.
Lastly, in teaching, relationships are important. The kids at my school were wonderful, and often the best way to help them — and to help yourself, when you’re trying to manage a classroom — is to form good, productive relationships. That’s the same in sales and in business, in general. When you have good relationships, everything goes more smoothly and moves faster, and people are more willing to help you.
Q: What interested you in ARInsights?
Ben: First, I was drawn by the company’s foothold in the technology space. Many of the clients we work with are leaders in the tech world. I’m interested in different types of technology and want to learn more about them — because as the world evolves, technology will continue to play a large role. It’s exciting that our clients are driving important technological advances and pioneering improvements across sectors.
I was also very interested in ARInsights because it’s an established company that’s going places. As I was engaged in my job search, I was impressed by ARInsights’ great reputation — both in terms of its technology and services, and also in terms of how it does business and conducts sales. We’re ethical and transparent, and our ultimate goal is to help clients.
Now that I’m here, I love seeing the enthusiasm for ARInsights firsthand: for our products, our events, our User Forum and our people. I feel like I belong to this tight-knit family that’s helping drive AR advances. It’s really cool!
Q: What’s the best part about your job?
Ben: My favorite part so far is working with a small team. I really wanted to be at a place where I could make noticeable contributions, be valued and have good access to leaders. I feel that way here.
I also wanted somewhere where I could learn. So many of the folks at ARInsights have been in analyst relations, technology and sales for a long time, so there’s a lot I can absorb. I’m always looking to be coached, because I want to be the best version of myself: both for me and also for my team.
Q: What are your goals for the rest of the year?
Ben: Having come in midway through the year, I want to make an impact as quickly as I can. I’m also happy to help alleviate the workload of other folks if they have a lot to manage — so I can pick up the slack wherever they need me to. I love that; it’s part of being on a team, and I’m happy to go outside my comfort zone to keep the ball moving.
Q: Can you share some of your hobbies and interests outside of work?
Ben: I’m a big sports fan. I enjoy watching American football. I root for the Ravens since I was born in Baltimore. I also follow basketball, especially when the bigger games are on.
And I still enjoy following rugby teams back in the UK, especially Wasps (who sadly aren’t doing so well). With the time difference, that can be a little tricky, though. Sometimes when there’s a game on the weekend, it will play in the early morning hours in the U.S.
Being a young person in Boston, I enjoy exploring new neighborhoods. I live with my girlfriend and my cat Betsy, a tortoiseshell, who has been with me for 10 years — since my time in the UK. My girlfriend and I enjoy finding new restaurants and taking short weekend trips, like to Cape Cod.
I like taking longer trips, too. As I mentioned, I try to get back to the UK a few times each year to see my parents, sister and friends. My sister is a doctor in the UK and just returned from a two-year stint in Antarctica, where she was a base doctor on a research base, for the British Antarctic Survey. It was great to see her when she returned this summer!
Lastly, since graduating college, I’ve been playing more video games. I find it’s a good way to stay connected with my friends from school, especially my rugby teammates from Williams College. It can be hard to go from seeing your friends every day to having them spread all over the country, so having a common activity — whether it’s fantasy football, online trivia or, for us, video games — helps keep us connected.
Many thanks to Ben for his time and contributions! We look forward to the value he’ll continue to bring to ARInsights and our clients.