Alumni Spotlight: Eduard Arakelyan

EduardArakelyanThis Alumni Spotlight brings us back in touch with one of the first employees we ever hired in our Sacramento, California operations center. Eduard Arakelyan began his career at ModSquad when he was looking to make the most of his newfound degree in a field that he loved. He has since moved on, now spending his days at the Golden 1 Credit Union and his nights treading the boards in the Sacramento theater scene to keep his creative juices flowing. Let’s turn back the clock and see how Ed found his way into the digital engagement realm.

What was your background prior to ModSquad?

Ah, the good ol’ college years. I found myself in various customer service roles as I worked toward my educational goals. Throughout my journey, I realized I really, truly loved helping others and that I was actually good at it.

What brought you here?

After college I knew I’d have to pack my bags and catch a train ticket (figuratively speaking) out of Sacramento, as my media major would pose a challenge in finding a career. In this time of transition, I would periodically look through job postings to see what possibilities were out there. One rainy afternoon — I actually remember it quite vividly — I came across a very creative job posting. The ModSquad core team was small back in 2009, so thinking back now, I wonder who actually wrote that ad. It had awesome written all over it (literally) and it turns out it was entirely true.

Why did you join ModSquad?

The potential is what initially drew me in. It was very different from everything else out there in the customer service world. I took a chance, super nervous, and went in for my interview. There were a number of us, in a brick-and-mortar loft, sitting in a beautifully decorated living room area as one by one we were called back to interview. I remember the two individuals who interviewed me, and everything about the process told me that this was meant to be. That evening was the beginning of the next four years of my professional life.

What were your thoughts as you worked for ModSquad?

“What’s next for me here?” Opportunities were endless. The projects were incredibly cool. (By the way, I tried taking a professional approach to answering these questions, straying away from words such as cool and awesome, but they epitomize the way I felt each waking day working on my set of projects.) Being a big gamer at heart and working in virtual worlds and MMOs… I was like a kid in a candy store. I had the opportunity to learn how an MMO is built from the ground up, from concept to design and implementation. I had the privilege of working for an incredibly amazing development company, managing a social community, and managing various brands on social media. I worked in tech support for a major TV network and got to experience the back end of how it all ran. Last but surely not least, the incredible people I met and friends I made along the way made the experience that much more memorable.

What did you learn from ModSquad?

I found myself, at times, in positions where I was in charge of creating. When you’re given an empty canvas and asked to create, it can be very challenging — and scary. With time, I learned that I had the experience and the tools I needed to excel. From this I learned never to second-guess myself.

Did the flexible scheduling help you out?

Absolutely. It allowed me to continue my education.

How was it working with the other project managers?

I’m friends with every single one of them to this date, so that should answer your question. That’s what happens when you work with people who love doing what they do as much as you do.

What was it like working with your high-profile clients?

The greatest challenge I found myself facing was communication. You can’t walk up to a director at your client’s company and ask them to answer a question; you may have a pressing issue that needs to be addressed, but they’re in a meeting 800 miles away. I learned to take the initiative and become my own leader when necessary.

What skills did you learn at ModSquad that have made you more marketable?

Each project I had the privilege of being a part of allowed me to develop a different set of skills. The greatest skill overall would have to be analytical thinking. You know… the skill that you often see as a requirement in job ads, the one we all claim to have? Working in quality assurance really made me think, because one plus one rarely equaled two. You had to figure out the how and the why. In terms of marketability, to say that you worked in partnership with a major television network or game studio has really helped me stand out.

Why do you think the ModSquad strategy is optimal for both Mods (“contractors”) and clients?

It’s a two-way highway. As a Mod you get the following: Potential for growth, both personal and professional. Flexibility in hours and work location. An opportunity to network, learn, and grow. The ability to work on brands, products, and projects that are insanely cool in nature. As a client: You get to focus on developing your best product. Leave the rest of the work to a group of passionate people who love what you offer as much as they love what they do. This in turn brings the quality of service to another level.

I ♥ ModSquad
— Eduard Arakelyan

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