Almost 7 years ago, Cédric Becam started at the Cloud Communications division of NTT (formerly known as Arkadin) as Video Operations Manager. He is now Engineering Manager and he describes his position with enthusiasm: “It’s very exciting to be at the heart of a technical service and having to manage on one side new features deployment and platform expansion, and on the other side issues troubleshooting and outage management. You always have to keep the balance between evolution and stability of the service.”
We talked with Cédric about his job and his well-balanced career path, both functionally and geographically.
Q. What is the most pleasant or exciting part of managing a team of operations engineers?
My team of operations engineers is very skilled technically and enthusiast on the service, it makes all difficulties much more easy to solve. To keep their motivation up, I have constantly to find new technical challenges for them, which is at the same time good for the technical evolution of the service.
Q. As an Engineering Manager, you have to work with different services like Operations, R&D, Finance, HR and Support. How do you manage that?
I don’t have a specific technique to work with all those different teams. Thanks to the culture of the company, events like happy hours and kick off allow to meet people from all departments in a relaxed context, so now it’s very easy to work with them.
Q. You arrived in the company in 2012 after the acquisition of Novasight, where you were previously working. Did your position change at this time?
Yes, when I joined the Cloud Communications division of NTT, I continued my activities on Video Managed Services (VMS), but I also quickly started to work on another video service we were selling at that time. This mission helped me to learn how the Operations Department was organised and made me meet a lot of people all around the globe.
Q. In your video, you talk about how the changes in your career has been presented to you quite naturally. Were you looking for it by yourself or did your manager encourage you?
Actually, before the changes in my career I told to my managers that I was open for some changes both functionally and geographically. For example, before moving to Singapore I told my manager nearly 1 year before that I was interested to move out of France. A need for a Global Operation Manager in Singapore appeared, then my manager came to me with a proposal without me doing any additional lobbying.
Q. Tell us more about what it was like for you to move from Montpellier to Singapore.Do you have funny or unusual stories to tell?
Move to Asia was quite easy. My Singaporean colleagues were very welcoming and provided a lot of advises and helped me to settle down. The experience was amazing, Singapore is a very good mix of Asian culture and modern way of life.
What was a little stressful was to empty my apartment in France before moving. I ended up, 2 days before leaving, organising a “donation party” at home and a lot of my friendly Montpellier colleagues showed up and went back home the hands full of things!
Q. Do you have any advice for people who want to follow a career like yours?
I think the most important is to inform your manager of your interest for change and show your motivation when the company have new needs. Also take opportunity of company events to mingle with colleagues from other departments and meet new people. This will allow you to better understand how the company works and it will help you to be more efficient when working with other teams.