THIS MONTH’S WONDER LEON

Kurt, VP Sales EMEA @Dataiku, Paris

From Michigan to Paris

So my name is Kurt, I’m originally from Michigan, in the US. I grew up there and I stayed there until I was about 22 when I graduated from college. I moved then to France because I had met the wonderful women that is now my wife and decided to follow her to her home country.

Dataiku: not just another French tech company

I had the pleasure to join Dataiku when it was still a relatively young company so it was maybe a little bit risky, but I think ultimately really I made the right choice. So for Dataiku especially at the time, when it was really starting to grow and needed to prove that it was able to be a company that was bigger than just a French tech company but really an international company, it was important for them to have international profiles who spoke different languages natively, people who had different skills, different cultures so that they could take the company beyond its original borders in France.

So it was really a natural fit between me and the company. I had something unique to offer them and they were able to offer me something that maybe no other company would have been able to do at the time.

Deconstructing preconceived notions: “The Parisian perfect balance”

Often people have a preconceived notion that, you know it’s not going to be very fast-paced or you know, aggressive but in the positive sense let’s say, but I found it was really quickly the opposite. To the contrary! It seems like people are working twice as hard to to prove that we can do the same things or even better than what’s going on in Silicon Valley or in New York or Berlin or anywhere else.

It’s been a really positive experience!  France has an amazing quality of life and you work in a company with amazing people that rival the Silicon Valley in terms of energy and ambition.

Calling all Leon!

The limiting factors that a lot of French companies have is finding great international talent.   But what Leons need to know, from my own experience, is that it’ll be thrilling, on a professional and personal level, but also very exciting for employers who will benefit from their expertise and international experience.

| In a Nutshell, from Kurt’s experience:

  • Look for a company that has exciting projects and the ability to make you grow

  • Capitalize on your experience as a globe-trotter – that experience is highly valuable in bringing a fresh look to things 

  • Accept the challenge! 🙂

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