Tag Archives: Career Development

Challenges Drive Career Growth: Meet Rudina Tafhasaj

Post Syndicated from Rapid7 original https://blog.rapid7.com/2024/04/02/challenges-drive-career-growth-meet-rudina-tafhasaj/

Challenges Drive Career Growth: Meet Rudina Tafhasaj

Starting a career for the first time in a new country can be intimidating. For Rudina Tafhasaj, her path to Senior Application Engineer at Rapid7 was paved with both unique challenges, and incredible rewards.

Growing up, Rudina was inspired to get into technology by her older brother. “He loved computers, and he was always opening up our big PC. I was curious, and would sneak around to see what he was doing,” Rudina says. “As I grew more, I saw that advances in technology were helping improve lives in so many ways. I knew it was going to be a big part of the future, and wanted to be involved.”

But technology wasn’t her only passion at a young age.

“Deep down my dream and passion is to be an actress – which is totally different! As I grew more, what I realized was that I actually loved the creativity involved in acting, and having the opportunity to network and work with other people.” While there may not always be cameras rolling, Rudina feels there are often similarities between her love of acting and her role today. “I can be creative in code, I can role play different scenarios, and this career is a way for me to tap into both of my passions. I am able to work on really impactful technology in a way that allows me to be creative while also partnering with all kinds of different people and teams along the way.”

At the very beginning of her career, Rudina faced a unique challenge that included relocating from her home in Albania to a new city in the Czech Republic. “It wasn’t easy moving to Prague. I had a tough time adjusting because I had never traveled, never lived on my own, and never had a professional job – and here I was tackling all three at once!” As the only daughter in a family with three brothers, she notes how she had to advocate for herself with her family in making such a big life change. While working as a Junior Developer, she had to work hard to overcome challenges and make an impact in her work.

“At my first job, as I was navigating all of this change, I got a really critical piece of feedback from my manager. I wasn’t developing my skills as much as he expected to see. I was in danger of losing my job if I didn’t make some dramatic improvements.”

This hard conversation served as a wakeup call for Rudina, and ignited her commitment to invest in learning and strengthening her skills so she could achieve her goals. While the feedback was hard to hear, Rudina notes that her manager continued to be supportive of her growth and wanted to help her succeed. “For 6 months, I woke up, went to work, came home, ate dinner, and then studied until it was time for bed. After doing that on repeat, my manager was able to see a dramatic improvement in the rate in which I was learning and growing. While there was still more to learn, he was impressed with my dedication and I continued to grow in my role.”

Rudina’s hard work paid off, and two years later, she took her career a step further with a position as a Salesforce Developer at Barclays. “I am so grateful to have had a manager that was able to give me the feedback I needed, while also encouraging me to stick with it and offer support along the way.”

Now a Senior Software Engineer at Rapid7, she reflects on her journey with a strong sense of pride and accomplishment. “Whatever challenges I went through in previous employers has made me the best person for Rapid7, and I’m grateful for all of my past experiences.” Overcoming challenges can sometimes feel uncomfortable, but it is often necessary to grow and move our careers forward. “It’s a continuous cycle too, as you grow and get more experience, you continue to set your goals higher and seek out the next challenge. There is always more to learn and more ways to grow in your career, especially in technology.”

Her appetite for continued growth is what ultimately brought her to Rapid7’s newest office in Prague in 2023. “I felt like I was ready for new challenges that would continue to accelerate my growth.” When looking at where to go next, she had three requirements that she was looking for in her next employer.

  1. A clear development plan with support from her manager
  2. A culture rooted in honesty and trust
  3. Competitive and fair compensation for her work. Growing her earning potential alongside the growth of her career as she continued to advance.

“When interviewing for the role at Rapid7, I found evidence of everything on my list, and so much more as well. What really stands out the most is the trust and responsibility given to me by the business analysts or project managers that I partner with. They will share what they are looking to do, and then give me the responsibility and the autonomy to go ahead and find a way to make it happen – even when I’m brand new. It feels good to be given that trust and to be able to work on business critical initiatives where my ideas are respected and valued.”

When asked what advice she would give others looking to take on a new role, she says to note down what your expectations and goals are. “Use the interview time to ask whatever questions you need to help understand if it’s the right move for you, or not.” Rudina says having things defined before the call helps you stay on track and get the most value as you weigh your options. “I had a lot of questions during my interview – but because I was able to get answers, I walked away with a really confident feeling that the role at Rapid7 was going to be just what I was looking for.”

For Rudina, growth and development was essential in her next role. As someone who embraces new challenges, and represents Rapid7’s core values every day through her actions and work, it didn’t take long for her to be offered yet another opportunity. Within her first three months, she was given the chance to serve as a team lead. She looks forward to continuing to make an impact in her work, grow her career, and support others through her participation in the Rapid7 Women Impact Group.

To learn more about career opportunities and what it’s like to work at Rapid7, visit our careers site.

Rapid7’s Ciara Cullinan Recognized as Community Trailblazer in Belfast Awards Program

Post Syndicated from Rapid7 original https://blog.rapid7.com/2024/03/14/rapid7s-ciara-cullinan-recognized-as-community-trailblazer-in-belfast-awards-program/

Rapid7’s Ciara Cullinan Recognized as Community Trailblazer in Belfast Awards Program

At the 2024 Women Who Code She Rocks Awards, Rapid7 Software Engineer II Ciara Cullinan was recognized with their ‘Community Trailblazer’ award.

According to Women Who Code, “This award celebrates the efforts of someone who brings people together and creates genuine connections in our tech community. Whether this is online or in-person, this person demonstrates exceptional commitment to building a thriving and inclusive community.

When it comes to building community, Ciara is a true champion who is consistently looking for ways to establish and grow meaningful connections among her team, across the organization, and in the local tech industry. Whether it’s encouraging engagement in various slack channels with ‘water cooler’ questions and ice breakers, or driving Rapid7’s sponsorship of Women Techmakers, she’s proactively seeking out ways to bring people together while growing her own network in the process.

“I think a lot of times – and especially for women – we focus on perfection in our work. We can be hesitant to share things until we have it 100% figured out ourselves. However, when we are able to build strong personal connections with our colleagues, or even others in the industry, the bravery to put something forward or ask for feedback comes much easier. That connection opens up the door to have honest conversations, share ideas, and provide feedback. This is where we can work together to drive impact and grow our skills, which lead to rewarding career experiences and growth.”

In addition to her role as an engineer, Ciara is an active member of Rapid7 Women. Rapid7 Women is an employee resource group that aims to support, enable, and empower all employees identifying as women to bring their best, true selves to work every day through community, action, and activism. Ciara actively contributes to this mission by helping build global and local initiatives for the group. As mentioned in her nomination submission, “Ciara collaborates with colleagues from around the globe, in different business units and roles to build a Women program that caters to supporting not only Women identifying individuals, but also seeks to educate allies on how to be a culture contributor exhibiting inclusive leadership traits.”

Ciara also highlights the importance of bringing more women into the tech industry, and how organizations like Women Who Code can make a difference. “In my role I am one of two women on the team. As technology continues to evolve and things like Artificial Intelligence become part of our everyday life, it’s important to get more women involved in the field to combat any implicit bias in the things that are being built. Bringing more diverse perspectives into a team can also help drive innovation and help organizations work through challenges more efficiently. Awards and programs like this help showcase what’s possible for the next generation of women, allowing them see and then realize the potential a career in tech could hold for them.”

To learn more about Women Who Code’s Belfast community, visit their website.

To learn more about Rapid7’s culture, and our Rapid Impact Groups, visit our careers page.

Paving a Path to Systems Administration: Naeem Jones’ Journey with Rapid7

Post Syndicated from Rapid7 original https://blog.rapid7.com/2024/02/14/paving-a-path-to-systems-administration-naeem-jones-journey-with-rapid7/

Paving a Path to Systems Administration: Naeem Jones’ Journey with Rapid7

Prior to becoming a Systems Administrator at Rapid7, Naeem Jones entered his career in cybersecurity through the Hack. Diversity program. Hack.Diversity is a program that connects talented Black and Latin/x students and early-career professionals with organizations that are looking to build inclusive and equitable working environments. Rapid7 is a founding member of “Hack” and has worked with the organization since 2017.

Jones remembers he and others in his cohort were looking for opportunities to grow and gain valuable experience at an organization, prioritizing the expansion of their expertise while also having ownership of tasks and projects. To Jones, one of the things that stood out the most about Rapid7 was the ability to be himself while having the opportunity to grow.

“One of my favorite core values at Rapid7 is ‘Bring You.’ I love having the ability to bring your authentic self every day – and that looks different for everyone. For myself, I am an avid gamer and even play competitively. I am part of multiple groups at Rapid7 where we discuss all the video games and media we love and are able to bond over our shared interests,” he said. Jones enjoys challenging those around him: “If you think you can beat me in a game, I am here, and I accept the challenge!”

Alongside the promise of a robust culture, there was room for Jones to challenge himself to create impact and grow. “Rapid7 emphasized that, once you join, you are part of the team. Even if you are an intern, you are a Moose and will be working alongside others with the same opportunities.” Employees call themselves “Moose” because it can refer to a single moose or an entire herd, demonstrating how every employee is working both individually and collaboratively to implement solutions. This references one of Rapid7’s five core values: “Impact Together.”

“I started by doing whatever I could to understand and take advantage of learning opportunities. A few months into my internship, I was put in charge of handling the onboarding process, which I continued as I came to Rapid7 full-time,” Jones said. “I had ownership of a critical part of the business, which was to be the face of IT and the first person at Rapid7 to give new employees information on their devices and where they can go when they need help or have issues.”

Every role at Rapid7 is integral to delivering for our customers, and Jones’ ability to demonstrate how to efficiently use devices is a great example. The faster our Moose are acclimated to their laptops and are equipped with the tools they need, the faster they can solve the challenges our customers are facing. This means they can more rapidly build products that will keep our customers ahead of attackers and safe in the midst of a complex digital environment.

As Jones has progressed through his career over the course of five years at Rapid7, he has taken advantage of opportunities to shadow those whose roles he has found fascinating. Through open communication with his managers, Jones was able to have a hand in mapping his progression into a Systems Administrator role. This has created opportunities for Jones to impart helpful information and wisdom of his own.

“Mentorship and cross-collaborationship never goes away. Of course, workload takes precedence but there is still so much for me to learn from my peers regardless of whether they are in a more junior or senior role. I have the opportunity now to also pass my knowledge along to others on processes I am well-versed in,” he said.

“I am able to offer wisdom, tips and tricks, and where to look when things aren’t right. I love being able to empower my team – or any partner – to learn from my experiences and be a teacher,” he said. “It is a privilege to be able to show others how I navigate processes to help them learn and to improve and become better. It is a continuous cycle.” This cycle is critical to the impact made at Rapid7 as Moose are able to work together on projects which foster expanded knowledge and fluid collaboration.

For those looking for their next opportunity, Jones acknowledges a difficult obstacle to overcome that many face: imposter syndrome. Although he recognizes that it may never truly go away, Jones suggests how to push through it: “Always try to partner, learn new skills, and shadow people in roles that interest you. No matter if it is a little thing or a big thing, just try,” he said.

Overall, Jones wants others to know that there is power in taking control in the face of adversity. “There have been points in my career where I felt paralyzed by imposter syndrome,” he said. “But, you can’t let that stop you from giving it a shot. Never let those feelings block you from learning and growing. Even if you ‘fail,’ you will still learn something and can carry that experience with you.

Learn more about opportunities available at Rapid7.

Rapid7 in Prague: Pete Rubio Shares Insights and Excitement for the New Office

Post Syndicated from Rapid7 original https://blog.rapid7.com/2024/02/02/rapid7-in-prague-pete-rubio-shares-insights-and-excitement-for-the-new-office/

Rapid7 in Prague: Pete Rubio Shares Insights and Excitement for the New Office

As we continue to grow our customer base here at Rapid7, we’re growing our offices as well – this time with a new location in the Czech Republic. With a successful history of building innovation hubs from Boston to Belfast, our teams can’t wait to bring new talent from Prague into the business.

Pete Rubio joined Rapid7 in December of 2020, and is the Senior Vice President, Platform & Engineering. In this role he leads our data and engineering teams as they work to develop, optimize, and deliver security products and solutions to more than 11,000 customers worldwide.

Here, he talks about what he’s excited to see in Prague, what makes working at Rapid7 unique, and how he has experienced growth and development in his role as a leader.

What can you share about our new office location in Prague?

As a cybersecurity company, the need to constantly evolve and bring new, innovative ideas to the table is paramount to our success and the success of our customers. When it comes to expanding our global presence with a new location in Prague, we are excited to grow our talent pool and bring new perspectives and ideas into the business. Creating an innovation hub like this isn’t new to us; we’ve seen success in our Belfast office when it comes to creating a global hub for innovation. I see Prague as a location that will follow that model and have that same impact.

What makes Rapid7 unique as an employer?

At Rapid7, it’s our culture that sets us apart from other global companies. We have really interesting problems to solve and breakthrough innovations to deliver, but it’s how we do things and the culture we’ve created here that makes us quite different. We believe in working together to challenge convention and deliver excellence. We value perspectives and ideas from all areas of the business, and there are no egos or personal agendas when it comes to delivering for our customers.

We also place an extremely high emphasis on giving employees opportunities to stretch themselves, try new things, and really grow their careers in a way that compliments our business strategy. Rapid7 has created an environment where you can grow your career, grow your leadership skills, clearly measure your impact on the business — and have a lot of fun along the way.

People all over the world spend a lot of time at work, and if you don’t like your co-workers or the environment you’re spending one third of your day in – it’s going to be a struggle. One thing I’ve found is that our culture has allowed us to work through our challenges and come out even stronger.

Rapid7 in Prague: Pete Rubio Shares Insights and Excitement for the New Office

So what exactly are we building, and what can future employees expect?

There are a few sites at Rapid7 that represent a cross section of the company and have almost every discipline represented. Prague will be one of those sites. We’ll have engineering, product, a SOC location, finance, sales, support, and more. This is more than an engineering location or satellite office. Employees here will be working on critical path initiatives across the whole business. This is exciting for our employees because it creates a lot of opportunities for collaboration as well as growing your career and skills. If you want to lean into different areas of the business, being in a place where you can learn from other people and participate in rotational projects is important to help you get there.

As I mentioned before, professional growth is a critical component of our culture and our values. We are always open to people having new ideas and suggestions that are aligned with or help evolve our strategy in a positive direction. By giving employees the opportunity to have discussions and set their own goals for professional development – while holding managers accountable for having those conversations – we become a place where learning, innovation, and growth are taking place all around us every day. When our people are thriving and doing really impactful work and growing their skills, we’re able to succeed as a business and deliver better products and services to our customers.

Why should someone consider working in Cybersecurity?

There isn’t a more dynamic sector than Cybersecurity. Not a single day has been boring for me since I’ve been in the industry. I also think the ability to make a positive impact on the world is rewarding. We work to secure companies from bad actors. We have well known brand names that we secure, and there’s a level of job satisfaction that comes from knowing we built technology that is actively working to make the world a safer place and stop the bad guys. The role between defender and attacker is always going to be a big cat-and-mouse game. We constantly need to be thinking three steps ahead in order to keep customers secure.

Rapid7 in Prague: Pete Rubio Shares Insights and Excitement for the New Office

What customer challenges are we solving?

When you look at the security landscape, our portfolio is probably one of the richest in the industry. So when we approach a customer to understand their security needs, we have almost everything they could possibly need in our offering. Additionally, the experience across our products and services are second to none. When I talk to our customers, I share that we are looking to be the leading platform consolidator.

When customers do business with us, we will make it so that their security programs are much more impactful for every dollar they spend with us. There are a lot of other companies that have a one-point solution, and that limits your ability to expand and grow with your customer. From the employee perspective, that also limits their ability to grow and work on new things. We have multiple products for our employees to work on and explore, and that means you don’t need to leave the company to grow.

You can do new and innovative things by changing product teams or working on a new offer. There are a lot of different ways we can increase customer efficiency as well as the efficacy of our programs, while providing really interesting career paths and opportunities for our people along the way.

Rapid7 in Prague: Pete Rubio Shares Insights and Excitement for the New Office

What have you found to be most rewarding in your role at Rapid7?

The most rewarding part of my job has been the opportunities I’ve had to lead; these opportunities go beyond what I was initially hired to do. It’s fantastic to see the breadth and depth of impact I’ve been able to have in just three short years. There are company-wide challenges I’ve been able to support that have not always been in my domain, but I’ve been given the trust and opportunity to come in and help. Leaning in like that has truly evolved my career – I’ve been able to grow my leadership skills, develop a team, and deliver favorable outcomes for customers.

My story of growth is not unique within the company. As our business becomes more successful, we see opportunities for each person to become more successful as well. Our People Strategy team is intentional about looking at employees as individuals and recognizing that growth and success isn’t always a linear journey. We’re giving employees the opportunity to have ownership of their career trajectory. As leaders, our job is to support their goals, give feedback, and align that evolution and growth to business objectives.

How does Rapid7 maintain a consistent culture across global offices?

Every site has their own microculture that is a core part of our macro culture. Each office has a unique flavor that compliments the culture and employee experience we’re known for. Every time I arrive at a Rapid7 office, it FEELS like a Rapid7 office. This goes beyond the spaces and the way things look. It’s about the people I interact with, the sense of a common goal, and a feeling of being welcomed and included.

When I walk into the Belfast office, I feel like I’m in the Austin office. When I’m at the Boston office, I feel the same way I do when I’m in the Tampa office. Getting the culture to a place where it feels consistent across each and every site is a really hard thing to do – and yet we’ve done that here.

When I think about what makes that possible, I feel it comes down to the way we think about people. We don’t have a Human Resources team, we have a People Strategy team. It’s a simple shift, but it’s deliberate. We don’t look at people as resources, we look at them as people. The intellectual property we produce and the value we deliver as a business is created by people. They are our most valuable asset, and the way we support, grow, and engage them has a direct impact on our success as a business.

Rapid7 in Prague: Pete Rubio Shares Insights and Excitement for the New Office

What would you say to someone in Prague looking for a new opportunity?

If you are looking for a place that intentionally values you as a person and gives you incredible opportunities to do your best work, I can’t think of a better environment than Rapid7. We’re committed to Prague as our next center for innovation, and we look forward to welcoming some of the most talented and collaborative professionals to join us in building a secure digital future.

View all current openings in Prague.

View all worldwide Product and Engineering openings.

Rapid7’s Data-Centric Approach to AI in Belfast

Post Syndicated from Rapid7 original https://blog.rapid7.com/2024/01/05/rapid7s-data-centric-approach-to-ai-in-belfast/

Rapid7’s Data-Centric Approach to AI in Belfast

Rapid7 has expanded significantly in Belfast since establishing a presence back in 2014, resulting in the company’s largest R&D hub outside the US with over 350 people spread across eight floors in our Chichester Street office.  There is a wide range of product development and engineering across the entire Rapid7 platform that happens here, but nearest and dearest to our hearts is that Belfast has really become the epicentre for our more than two decades of investment in data. It has formed the bedrock for our AI, machine learning and data science efforts.

Read on to find out more about the importance of data and AI at Rapid7!

Rapid7’s Data-Centric Approach to AI in Belfast

A Forward-thinking Data Attitude

First up let’s talk data.  We’ve had a specialist data presence in Belfast for a number of years, initially focused on the consumption, distribution, and analytics for quality product usage data, via interfaces such as Amazon SNS/SQS, piping data into time-series data stores like TimescaleDB and InfluxDB.  Product usage data is unique due to its high volume and cardinality, which these data stores are optimized for.  The evolution of data at Rapid7 required more scale, so we’ve been introducing more scalable technologies such as Apache Kafka, Spark, and Iceberg.  This stack will enable multiple entry points for access to our data.

  • Apache Kafka, the heart of our data infrastructure, is a distributed streaming platform allowing us to handle real-time data streams with ease.  Kafka acts as a reliable and scalable pipeline, ingesting massive amounts of data from various sources in real-time. Its pub-sub architecture ensures data is efficiently distributed across the system, with multiple types of consumers per topic enabling teams to process and analyze information as it flows.
  • Transforms run via Apache Spark, serving as the processing engine taking our data to the next level, opening us up to either batch processing or streaming directly from Kafka where we ultimately land the data into an object store with the Iceberg layer on top.
  • Apache Iceberg is an open table format for large-scale datasets, providing ACID transactions, schema evolution, and time travel capabilities. These features are instrumental in maintaining consistency and reliability of our data, which is crucial for AI and analytics at Rapid7.  Additionally, the ability to perform time travel queries with Iceberg allows us to analyze and curate historical data, an essential component in building predictive AI models.

Our Engineers are constantly developing applications on this stack to facilitate ETL pipelines in languages such as Python, Java and Scala, running within K8s clusters.  In keeping with our forward-thinking attitude to data, we continue to adopt new tooling and governance to facilitate growth, such as the introduction of a Data Catalog to visualize lineage with a searchable interface for metadata.  In this way, users self-discover data but also learn how specific datasets are related, giving a clearer understanding of usage.  All this empowers data and AI Engineers to discover and ingest the vast pools of data available at Rapid7.

Our Data-Centric Approach to AI

At the core of our AI engineering is a data-centric approach, in line with the recent gradual trend away from model-centric approaches.  We find model design isn’t always the differentiator: more often it’s all about the data.  In our experience when comparing different models for a classification task, say for example a set of neural networks plus some conventional classifiers, they may all perform fairly similarly with high-quality data.  With data front and centre at Rapid7 as a key part of our overall strategy, major opportunities exist for us to leverage high-quality, high-volume datasets in our AI solutions, leading to better results.

Of course, there are always cases where model design is more influential.  However marginal performance gains, often seen in novelty-focused academia, may not be worth the extra implementation effort or compute expense in practice. Not to say we aren’t across new models and architectures – we review them every week – though the classic saying “avoid unnecessary complexity” also applies to AI.

The Growing Importance of Data in GenAI

Let’s take genAI LLMs as an example.  Anyone following developments may have noticed training data is getting more of the spotlight, again indicative of the data-centric approach.  LLMs, based on transformer architectures, have been getting bigger, and vendors are PRing the latest models hard.  Look closely though and they tend to be trained with different datasets, often in combination with public benchmark data too.  However, if two or three LLMs from different vendors were trained with exactly the same data for long enough we’re willing to bet the performance differences between them might be minimal. Further, we’re seeing researchers push in the other direction, trying to create smaller, less complex open-source LLMs that compare favourably to their much larger commercial counterparts.

Considering this data-centric shift, more complex models in general may not drive performance as much as you think.  The same principles apply to more conventional analytics, machine learning and data science.  Some models we’ve trained also have very small datasets, maybe only 100-200 examples, yet generalise well due to accurately labelled data that is representative of the wild.  Huge datasets are at risk of duplicates or mislabelled examples, essentially significant noise, so it’s about data quality and quantity.  Thankfully we have both in abundance, and our data is of a scale you’re unlikely to find elsewhere.

Expanding our AI Centre of Excellence in Belfast

Rapid7 is further investing in Belfast as part of our new AI Centre of Excellence, encompassing the full range of AI, ML and data science.  We’re on a mission to use data and AI to accelerate threat investigation, detection and response (D&R) capabilities of our Security Operations Centre (SOC).  The AI CoE partners with our data and D&R teams in enabling customers to assess risk, detect threats and automate their security programs.  It ensures AI, ML and data science are applied meaningfully to add customer value, best achieve business objectives and deliver ROI.  Unnecessary complexity is avoided, with a creative, fast-fail, highly iterative approach to accelerate ideas from proof-of-concept to go or no-go.

The group’s make-up is such that our technical skills complement one another; we share our AI, ML and data science knowledge while also contributing on occasion to new external AI policy initiatives with recognised bodies like NIST.  We use, for example, a mix of LLMs, sklearn, PyTorch and more, whilst the team has a track record of publishing award-winning research at the likes of AISec at ACM CCS and with IEEE.  All of this is powered by data, and the AI CoE’s goals are ambitious.

Rapid7’s Data-Centric Approach to AI in Belfast

Interested in joining us?

We are always interested in hearing from people with a desire to be part of something big.  If you want a career move where you can grow and make an impact with data and AI, this is it.  We’re currently recruiting for multiple brand-new data and AI roles in Belfast across various levels of seniority as we expand both teams – and we’d love to hear from you!   Please check out the roles over here!

Rapid7 Recognized by Newsweek as one of ‘America’s Greatest Workplaces for Diversity for 2024’.

Post Syndicated from Rapid7 original https://blog.rapid7.com/2024/01/04/rapid7-recognized-by-newsweek-as-one-of-americas-greatest-workplaces-for-diversity-for-2024/

Rapid7 Recognized by Newsweek as one of ‘America’s Greatest Workplaces for Diversity for 2024’.

On December 13th, Newsweek Magazine published their list of ‘America’s Greatest Workplaces for Diversity for 2024’. Like many companies today, Rapid7 recognizes the positive impact diversity plays in driving organizational success, attracting and retaining exceptional talent, and creating positive career experiences for all people.

Sophia Dozier, Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Rapid7 shares “We are proud to be on a list showcasing companies committed to Equity, Inclusion and Diversity. Diversity of lived experience and thought create a more impactful depth and breadth of knowledge. This knowledge is what enables us to push boundaries and deliver extraordinary results and experiences for our partners, our customers, and our employees.”

The process for selection includes extensive research on publicly available information, along with an anonymous online survey capturing feedback from more than 220,000 employees at companies in the United States. Research captures information on company leadership, employee resource groups and internal communities, dedicated diversity program leaders, and social good reporting and initiatives. In the surveys, participants answer questions pertaining to work-life-balance, working environments, and workforce management. Companies then undergo an evaluation that includes media monitoring and validation of findings.

The findings from this year’s awards program reflect Rapid7’s intentional efforts to ensure diversity is a key part of their business strategy. As stated by Chief People Officer, Christina Luconi, “Rapid7 is committed to building an organization that thrives with the spirit of diversity and inclusion. We don’t think of DE&I as a project or a checklist item; it’s a core part of our culture and values set.  As a cybersecurity company, our mission is bold and challenging.  Ensuring we attract unique perspectives and backgrounds, and empowering them to come together in a way that is truly inclusive, is one way we feel like we are set up to achieve our audacious goals.

In addition to being recognized by Newsweek as a great workplace for Diversity, Rapid7 has also been recognized and included in a variety of other diversity focused lists and indexes. In 2023, the company was listed on the Bloomberg Equity Index for the 5th consecutive year. The firm also participated in the Human Rights Campaign’s Corporate Equality Index, receiving an impressive score of 90% as a first time participant.

When it comes to the year ahead, Dozier is looking forward to continuing to evolve the company’s diversity programs by leveraging support from business leaders, strategic partnerships, and employees. “In 2024 we will continue to build programs focused on enhancing the skills needed to compete at a global level and navigate complex challenges. We’re proud to have long standing partnerships with organizations who are committed to providing historically underrepresented and underserved communities with pathways into cybersecurity and technology careers. Internally, we will continue to collaborate with our employees to be a better version of ourselves, staying true to one of our core values #neverdone.

To learn more about how Rapid7 approaches diversity, equity and inclusion click here. To explore career opportunities and learn more about Rapid7’s values and Rapid Impact Groups, visit their careers page.

How a Principal Engineer Made His Journey to Cloud Security With Rapid7

Post Syndicated from Tal Avissar original https://blog.rapid7.com/2022/09/13/how-a-principal-engineer-made-his-journey-to-cloud-security-with-rapid7/

How a Principal Engineer Made His Journey to Cloud Security With Rapid7

The first programming language I learned in my childhood was Pascal. I was 12 years old at the time, and I quickly developed a passion for technology.

From a young age, I always knew I wanted to learn engineering and computer science. I wanted to solve big design and architecture problems while building new products that would influence the many people using software every day. The idea that we can use technology to build better tools inspires me, and I get excited about finding ways to help people work more efficiently.

Cybersecurity is such an interesting field because of the unique challenges and complexities associated with it. With my prior knowledge and background in security fundamentals and algorithms, joining Rapid7 felt like an exciting opportunity to grow my career.

An approachable start to a new challenge

Starting a role in a new industry can feel overwhelming, but Rapid7 has provided me the tools to make it a successful transition.

I joined Rapid7 as a Principal Engineer within our Cloud Security team. When I joined, I had some background in cybersecurity and security. Upon joining, I was immediately supported with the training programs and learning materials that helped me get up to speed and understand the business in more detail.

As a new hire, I had an excellent onboarding experience. The onboarding program gave me the chance to experience the unique culture and values of Rapid7, while also learning more about our industry, products, and the evolving needs of our customers. With the right tools, programs, and culture, I felt supported from day 1 to begin learning and immerse myself into the business and culture.

What sets Rapid7 apart

There are a lot of things that make Rapid7 unique as an employer. The people who work here are incredibly smart and kind, and the company places emphasis on learning and development, which shows they care about their people. It’s important for me to be in an environment where the business and leaders support their teams and care about giving them the right resources and tools they need to do the job, while also growing their own skills and knowledge. In engineering, the team gets access to the tools and tech stack requirements needed to fulfill our work.

Since I joined the company, I have experienced the reward of seeing the direct impact of my work. Being able to work autonomously to get the job done while having opportunities to mentor and coach others around me has been extremely rewarding. I love having the freedom to be creative, learn, and innovate new solutions. As I continue to grow within my career, I look forward to my next step in achieving my MSC degree in computer science. Being in an organization where I am creating products from scratch and using a cutting-edge tech stack helps contribute toward this goal.

I’ve learned a lot by taking a new step in my career and moving to a cloud security company. For those who are looking to do the same, I have a few pieces of advice to help you be successful:

  • Have an attitude of learning and growth.
  • There are many certifications you can get that will help introduce you to cloud technology. Check out certifications for GCP, AWS, and Azure to get comfortable.
  • Research and explore advanced concepts of security, encryption, and attack models. There is a lot of exciting activity happening in cybersecurity, and learning more about the industry can fuel your interest and help you understand the importance and impact your work in this field can have.

Interested in joining Tal on the Cloud Security team at Rapid7? Explore our open roles.

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5 Things Rapid7 Looks for in a BDR, and How We Spot Them

Post Syndicated from Rapid7 original https://blog.rapid7.com/2022/09/06/5-things-rapid7-looks-for-in-a-bdr-and-how-we-spot-them/

5 Things Rapid7 Looks for in a BDR, and How We Spot Them

Every successful organization has a great salesforce. At Rapid7, the Business Development Representative (BDR) Program is a huge source of talent for our sales organization. Some of our most successful salespeople come from the program. So, what is it?

The BDR Program at Rapid7 is an entry-level program that aims to provide early careerists the opportunity to kickstart their career and grow their selling skills. As a part of the program, new hires develop the skills to uncover opportunities with prospects and customers and partner with account executives to continue to expand their knowledge around the entirety of the sales cycle.

As we gear up to welcome another round of applicants, our Talent Acquisition Partner, Lauren Coloumbe, shares five things we look for in BDRs and how we spot them in the interview process.

5 Things Rapid7 Looks for in a BDR, and How We Spot Them
Lauren Coloumbe, Talent Acquisition Partner at Rapid7

1. An interest in the sales process

Sales gives you an opportunity to flex a lot of different problem-solving muscles. At Rapid7, we believe the key to solving problems effectively is through building strong relationships. Each customer has different needs and priorities, and building a relationship establishes trust and understanding that will help us learn more and determine how Rapid7 can meet those needs.

How we spot it: We’re looking for people who demonstrate a passion for problem-solving and are excited to build relationships. Sharing what you’re passionate about in your career and how a role in sales can help you use these skills is something we want to see.  

2. Interest in or curiosity about cybersecurity

You don’t have to be a subject matter expert, but showing an interest in our industry is a great way to help you stand out. Our lives are becoming more digital and connected every day. While that comes with a lot of excitement and efficiency, it also opens up a lot of new risks to our information and communities.

How we spot it: Think about real-life examples of cybersecurity threats around you every day and how impactful it can be to play a role in protecting not only our customers, but our communities at large. We love when candidates can make a personal connection to our mission or share something interesting they may have learned when conducting some initial industry research.  

3. People who are open to learning

We don’t expect you to come in with a ton of industry knowledge, but we do expect you to be prepared to learn, take direction, and ask thoughtful questions. As a BDR, you will be given a lot of opportunities for coaching and development. Being open to learning new things will help you grow and establish a strong foundation.

How we spot it: Natural curiosity drives opportunities for learning. Think of a time when you were especially curious about something or were put in a position where you had to learn a new skill or subject. The interview is also an opportunity for you to express your curiosity. Ask thoughtful questions and let us see your curiosity in action.

4. Team-oriented individuals

At Rapid7, selling is a team sport. You’ll have a group of people in your corner who are invested in your success and ready to lend a helping hand, and you’ll be encouraged to do the same when you get the opportunity. The more we partner together, the better outcomes we can create for our customers and for the company.

How we spot it: There’s nothing wrong with celebrating your wins, but how you got there and how you worked as part of a team are equally important. Share examples of how you worked as a team and either succeeded or failed together. Focus on the effort of the team and the collective impact rather than your own personal role in the process.

5. Challenging convention

Challenging convention means speaking up to share an idea when you feel it can benefit the team. This is a place where everyone is expected to check their ego at the door. This makes it easy for everyone to try new things, fail, learn, and try again. You don’t need to be a manager or a long-time employee to challenge convention, we all have an equal voice when it comes to creating positive customer outcomes.

How we spot it: Think of examples where you stood up for a new or different way of doing things. How did you challenge the status quo or share a new perspective that helped the final outcome?

Learn more about our BDR program and entry-level sales roles at Rapid7.

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Leading the Way in Tampa

Post Syndicated from Julian Waits original https://blog.rapid7.com/2022/08/17/leading-the-way-in-tampa/

Leading the Way in Tampa

If you’ve been to the Tampa Bay area in recent years, you’ve probably noticed the significant tech industry expansion taking place in the Channel District. It’s an exciting time to be a part of the scene, and Rapid7 is smack in the middle. Being active in the Tampa Bay Chamber of Commerce is incredibly rewarding. I’ve personally been involved with the Chamber for more than a year, and I’ve witnessed first-hand their commitment to making Tampa Bay a vibrant, inclusive place to do business.

My next adventure with the Chamber involves becoming a part of its Leadership Tampa program — one of the oldest leadership programs in the country — which fulfills a mission to highlight the strengths of the Tampa Bay region and impact the community through various organized projects. Our 52-person group will also be collaborating with local not-for-profits to create strength in numbers.

We will continue building upon the diversity and inclusion efforts driven by previous Leadership Tampa members, as well as focus on the challenges of transportation, affordable housing, and inflation, among others. I’m looking forward to the many conversations and activities we will undertake as part of this initiative.


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How One Engineer Upskilled Into a Salesforce Engineering Role at Rapid7

Post Syndicated from Rapid7 original https://blog.rapid7.com/2022/08/08/how-one-engineer-upskilled-into-a-salesforce-engineering-role-at-rapid7/

How One Engineer Upskilled Into a Salesforce Engineering Role at Rapid7

At Rapid7, we believe the growth and development of our people enables us to better serve customers who depend on us. When our Engineering team was searching for candidates to help with our Salesforce ecosystem, John Millar demonstrated many of our core values – most importantly, the appetite to learn and grow his career as part of our commitment to “Never Done.” Through his own grit and determination – and support from his team – he transitioned into a new role and acquired a new set of skills along the way.

Here’s a closer look at that journey, told in John’s own words.

Celebrating a new path

Coming up on nearly two years at Rapid7, I am over the moon with what I have achieved personally and professionally. Before joining the company, I was a Q developer working with KDB+ systems. Now, I am an Engineer working in our Salesforce ecosystem in Belfast.

Getting up to speed with our Salesforce system, becoming a valuable member of our development team, and helping to knock out some big projects in that time period have made me incredibly proud of how my career has grown in under two years. I have also become the team’s SME for an integrated software tool that is connected with Salesforce and have completed my first Salesforce certification, with more planned before the end of the year. These certifications are funded by Rapid7 as part of their core value of “Never Done.”

Creating a new direction for my career and having the opportunity to grow has certainly paid off, but it didn’t happen overnight.

Jumping into something new

Rewinding back to 2020 – I had been working for over two years as part of a periodic low-frequency development team for a Tier 1 bank. We were responsible for the maintenance and development of the low frequency components of the plant. This role revolved around a holistic time series database system built on kdb+ (q language), containing a wide range of data covering both periodic and aperiodic frequencies and all asset classes.

I felt like I wanted a new challenge and was interested in moving back into a role based around an object oriented language, similar to what I had been working with throughout University. I had heard of and researched Rapid7, so when they contacted me and outlined their goals, objectives, and culture along with the specific role I would be applying for, I knew it was for me and wanted to make that jump.

Supporting new skills and growth

One of the core values of Rapid7 is “Never Done,” which encourages employees to constantly learn and improve their knowledge stack. I believe this was pivotal in my upskilling process, as the support needed was very accessible.

Rapid7 was invested in my growth from the moment I joined. As a candidate, I didn’t fit 100% of the requirements at the time. I understood the fundamentals and met the core criteria, but I didn’t have a ton of experience in Java and had no experience with Salesforce. Rapid7 recognized my potential and was invested in helping me grow my skills and become a great Salesforce developer for the team.  

When upskilling to Salesforce, the main area I used was Trailheads, a free program provided by Salesforce. These exercises and learning modules are very detailed, interesting, and interactive. They really help with absorbing and understanding the information in conjunction with actively completing tasks in parallel. Additionally, I was supported and mentored by colleagues from Rapid7, who were equally invested in my growth. Whether it was through formal 1:1s or just making themselves available for advice and questions, I felt supported throughout the process.

Creating impact

Making the transition was not easy, and it took a lot of time and effort. I had to be self-motivated and determined to get up to speed with the Salesforce CRM and Salesforce Apex. Having completed this transition journey into Salesforce, it is all the more satisfying when completing and planning work, knowing that it has paid dividends in terms of my career growth.

Our team is making an impact by enabling the Salesforce ecosystem to operate more efficiently. We do this by analyzing and debugging issues, identifying opportunities, and improving our integration capabilities. This means the Rapid7 team is better positioned to support and protect our customers against outside threats to their business, as well as protect the personal information and data of their customers.

I have great confidence and pride in the work that I complete and feel I play a vital role in our team. I would highly recommend anyone thinking of making that jump to something new, to go for it. I know I haven’t looked back.

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Creating an Exceptional Workplace: Building and Expansion in a Post-COVID World

Post Syndicated from Jamie Kinch original https://blog.rapid7.com/2022/07/13/creating-an-exceptional-workplace-building-and-expansion-in-a-post-covid-world/

Creating an Exceptional Workplace: Building and Expansion in a Post-COVID World

Since its launch in 2011, Rapid7 UK has been on a mission to build a strong footprint in the region. Today, the company is celebrating the opening of its newly expanded and designed Reading office, located in the Thames Valley District at Forbury Place.

This new location was selected to reflect both the changing needs of the business since its original UK introduction, while balancing the needs and desires of our people. Working together, Rapid7’s Real Estate and Workplace Experience team partnered with many of the local employees, ultimately narrowing down the search for new space based on items such as accessibility to rail, newly configured space to meet the evolving needs of our team members (we call them “Moose”!), and our ongoing commitment to championing environmental sustainability in our office spaces.

In designing this new space during a time when many companies are managing through dynamics such as “The War for Talent” and “The Great Resignation,” much thought was put into creating a vibrant, energetic space that draws people in. The team is intent on building a space that fosters meaningful connections that help us innovate and build careers while providing a neighborhood community feel, as opposed to static workstations and limited connections and collaboration.

The world has adopted a sharing economy (think Lyft, Uber, WeWork, and Airbnb), and the workplace has evolved, too. We no longer divvy up office space based on the size of a team with no consideration of how they use it – we are purpose-focused, we help our Moose consider the work that needs to be completed on any given day, and we make sure the resources exist to best achieve this. (We also measure this so that we can adapt and respond to how our resources are used – we are never done.) Through these efforts, we are confident that even those who prefer to work largely remotely and want the option to do so will be drawn to this space in a way that makes them feel working in this office will serve to support their success and career.  

Using our new Reading space as a model, here are three ways we believe in-office time (even in a “hybrid” situation) can make a positive impact on the business as a whole:

  1. Relationships – Technology certainly helped us stay connected and productive through the pandemic. And yet, no amount of virtual happy hours will ever truly be able to replace genuine human interaction. Virtual meeting platforms are a game-changer for productivity and flexibility, but they can’t offer true trust or relationship-building. Think of all the magic that occurs when you share a lunch outing with colleagues or catch a person in the hall and say, “Hey, do you have five minutes to whiteboard this with me?” Consider all the impromptu conversations that take place in the halls, elevators, etc. Those interactions are wonderful because they don’t require formal meetings.
  2. Separation – Nearly everyone we’ve spoken to feels like they have been working more hours since the pandemic began. Why?! We are never away from our technology. Even if we’ve managed to carve in more flexible time during our days to help a child with homework or walk our dog during lunch, we are never more than a few steps away from email, Slack, or our computers. Having a space to go to actually meet with people and get some project work done allows us to create a bit more distance between our work and the rest of our lives.
  3. InclusionDiversity, Equity, and Inclusion has been a hot topic in recent years. At the same time, companies are working hard to diversify their workforces in terms of their mix of people, while also creating a sense of parity among people AND nurturing a sense of belonging. That is a high challenge for any organization, but it will be further complicated with new working models. And it’s absolutely the right problem to be solving. Even with the most flexible new “work of the future” models, there is a risk of people “not in the room” feeling left out or overlooked. However, by carefully crafting experiences where people can gather, we can optimize that feeling of inclusion and belonging through collaboration and human connection.
Creating an Exceptional Workplace: Building and Expansion in a Post-COVID World

We aren’t just providing a desk – we’re building a community

At Rapid7, we are laser-focused on creating the chemistry that provides people with the right environment to create their best impact. We understand that not everyone thrives on the traditional 8am-to-6pm, in-office model, and we are not working to reinvent that – instead, we are building a flexible and supportive community that makes every Rapid7 office a great place to come to work.

Learn more about our company and its values. Click here to read about Social Good at Rapid7.

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The Forecast Is Flipped: Flipping L&D to Ensure Continuous Growth

Post Syndicated from Courtney Campbell original https://blog.rapid7.com/2022/07/12/the-forecast-is-flipped-flipping-l-d-to-ensure-continuous-growth/

The Forecast Is Flipped: Flipping L&D to Ensure Continuous Growth

At Rapid7, we staunchly believe that our people are central to upholding our mission and embodying our core values to ultimately drive our customers into a more secure future. For this reason, Rapid7 works tediously to ensure that our Moose have ample opportunities to learn and grow in their careers.

In order to support such development, the People Development team strives to ensure that our programs are not only impactful but also support our Moose to be “Never Done” in their pursuit to have the career experience of their lifetime. Our approach to learning is to “Challenge Convention” through the proactive and consistent iteration of our programs to reflect this ever-changing world. Such evolution is crucial after a forced 2-year remote work experience and Rapid7’s shift to a hybrid workplace.

Limitations on learning

Let’s travel back to 2018. From a Learning and Development perspective, this year feels like visiting a vastly different universe – one in which exclusively in-person training across a select set of offices, offered a few times a year, was the norm.

At this point in time, Rapid7 offered five soft-skills training courses, designed to introduce participants to best practices of a specific soft skill that supported professional success. The instructor would facilitate the majority of trainings in our Boston office location and then travel to one or two other office locations in order to offer training to participants outside of the hub location. The challenge? This in-person approach did not account for a growing global workforce; we needed to figure out how to keep our programs inclusive and accessible for those outside of Boston. Furthermore, because it intrinsically took time for the instructor to travel to physical office locations to offer these training sessions, there was a lag between the time when the employee needed the training and the time it was delivered to them. Ultimately, this interlude resulted in a delayed, or even missed, opportunity for learning.

Our team also realized that we were standardizing career development by operating under the assumption that each employee should focus narrowly on those five soft skills rather than championing the uniqueness of each Moose’s individual career experiences and the shifting needs of the business. These challenges served as the fuel that propelled us into the future of our “All Moose” learning programs. It was time to align learner needs with those of the business, put our Moose in the driver’s seat of their development, nurture our ever-growing global employee base, and acknowledge the new world of hybrid work. This focus ultimately helped us move away from a one-size-fits-all approach to learning and propel our mission forward.

The evolution

With in-person trainings on hold, Rapid7 had the space to thoughtfully investigate what the future of learning could look and feel like for “All Moose.” Thus, the Moose GPS was born. The Moose GPS serves as a strategically adapted version of a traditional Individual Development Plan, transformed into a dynamic and collaborative tool. The “GPS” portion of the tool stands for “Growing, Partnering, and Succeeding” because these are all things the Moose will do while completing one! Composed of three steps, the GPS is unique in that it encourages employee ownership, accountability, and managerial partnership around development. No longer is the conversation and action plan initiated and driven solely by a Moose’s manager.

Originally conceived as enablement for the Moose GPS, People Development curated a collection of courses strategically designed to enable Moose to fiercely take ownership of their unique development path, namely, the Continuous Growth Courses. The ethos behind the three-course Continuous Growth Program is to provide employees with the tools, opportunities, and connections necessary to become champions of their development. While the courses mirror the progression of the Moose GPS, the curriculum intentionally focuses on skill-building rather than on the use of the tool itself.

In reflection of our core value “Challenge Convention,” continuously challenging what is for what could be, the Continuous Growth Program would be the focus for the next iteration of Rapid7’s Learning and Development programs.

2022: Flipping, scaling, going global

The collision between our revolutionized learning philosophy and a global pandemic catalyzed a shift into a new realm of learning, one that prioritizes inclusivity, utilizes technology, and rethinks traditional, classroom-based teaching methods. We understood that changes needed to be made in order to ensure business alignment and overall program effectiveness.

Now, in 2022, Rapid7 has catapulted the Continuous Growth Courses even further ahead. This year, we have “flipped” approximately 50% of our content. This shift has enabled us to “scale with soul” and maximize learner accessibility and inclusivity. Flipped learning is an instructional strategy where learners engage in both self-paced and in-classroom learning activities. The program is strategically designed to ensure cross-sectional engagement and enable measurable behavioral shifts. Courses are taught in a cohort model and include both synchronous and asynchronous activities to support scale while striking a balance between individual learners’ schedules and providing opportunities for collaborative learning.

Each of the courses is two weeks long; during these two weeks, learners are first provided with an interactive e-learning where they engage with material on their own time. The e-learning intentionally introduces the learner to the content by mingling text, video, gamification, and knowledge checks in order to seamlessly immerse the learner into the material and maximize engagement. The on-demand nature of this activity permits the Moose to learn flexibly, encouraging them to self-pace around their own schedules.

The material introduced digitally will later be applied in the live session, where participants across the globe are united in one virtual classroom. By the time the participants attend the live session, the familiarity they have gained with the content in the digital learning experience will be practiced and applied in the live session in order to maximize knowledge absorption. The sessions consist of various activities in which learners are put into breakout rooms where they are able to create new, and otherwise unlikely, connections while bonding over the learning experience. We leverage tenured Moose to present on their own experiences with career development in these sessions, enabling us to scale our programs and foster high impact learning. Simultaneously, through our management development programs, our managers are equipped with the same skills and tools to facilitate meaningful development, feedback, and coaching conversations, providing their Moose with space and time for action.

How is it going? Let’s take a look

By equipping employees with the necessary skills to be active participants in their development, we not only empower them to raise the bar and become lifelong learners, but we also cyclically feed our culture of continuous learning. These employees cultivate growth mindsets and understand that their individual growth and success is intertwined with, not separate from, our shared organizational growth and success. By providing experiences for our employees to lean into their growth and development through onboarding, Continuous Growth Courses, and a variety of learning resources, we are investing in their future and our shared future.

Program and sessions

“I think this program helped me take a step back and really think about my work and how I want to evolve. It’s easy to get caught up in your day to day without really thinking so this course will help me be more intentional in my goals and growth going forward.”

“I found all three modules to be very helpful – it’s not often you’re prompted to sit and reflect on your career, and the prompts were helpful for doing so.”

“This experience has helped me feel more engaged!”


Since the launch of these courses in April, Moose who have enrolled in the course say:

  • 100% said they felt confident using the learned skills
  • 93% said they had a development conversation with their manager
  • 93% said they had taken more accountability for their development since completing the course

Managers of Moose who have enrolled in the course say:

  • 94% said their direct reports had taken more accountability for their development since completing the course

This is the final blog post in our series, “The Forecast Is Flipped.” Thank you so much for following along with Rapid7’s innovative learning practices!

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Rapid7 Belfast Recognized for “Company Connection” During COVID-19 Pandemic

Post Syndicated from Rapid7 original https://blog.rapid7.com/2022/07/01/rapid7-belfast-recognized-for-company-connection-during-covid-19-pandemic/

Rapid7 Belfast Recognized for “Company Connection” During COVID-19 Pandemic

Irish News has recognized Rapid7 in its Workplace and Employment Awards, where we’ve taken home the trophy for Best Company Connection. Reflecting on the past two years, this award recognizes the organization that best demonstrates how it has adapted its workplace well-being strategy to the challenges of remote working influenced by the COVID-19 pandemic. Specifically, this includes how the company has remained committed to providing excellent support to its staff throughout, and maintaining contact and connection with workers during periods of uncertainty and isolation.

Rapid7 Belfast Recognized for “Company Connection” During COVID-19 Pandemic

Rapid7 has been part of Belfast’s booming technology scene since 2014 and is home to a growing team of engineers, developers, and customer advisors. From 2020 to 2022, the office population nearly doubled in size to support the increasing demand from customers around the world for streamlined and accessible cybersecurity solutions. Maintaining Rapid7’s commitment to the core values of “Be an Advocate,” “Never Done,” “Impact Together,” “Challenge Convention,” and “Bring You” was a critical focal point for our local leadership as they scaled their teams in the midst of an unprecedented global pandemic.

The judges were very impressed by Rapid7’s holistic response to this new way of working, and how the company recognised the importance of maintaining contact, culture, and connection during such unprecedented times. Programs that stood out included leadership engagement through weekly Town Halls, engagement with mental well-being experts, and several grassroots community initiatives, including an Academy group designed to support parents in homeschooling their children.

Rapid7 Belfast Recognized for “Company Connection” During COVID-19 Pandemic

In addition to taking home the winning title, Rapid7 was also recognised as a finalist in two other categories this year: Best People Development Programme and Best Place to Work. Rapid7’s global commitment to its employees has been recognized in other recent designations, including the #1 spot on the Boston Business Journal Best Places to Work list in June and landing at #2 on Comparably’s list of Best Workplaces in Boston in March. Expanding our winning track record into the United Kingdom speaks to how we support employees in creating the career experience of a lifetime while positively impacting our customers and the greater cybersecurity community.


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The Forecast Is Flipped: Flipping L&D Enables Managers to Be Impact Multipliers

Post Syndicated from Megan Yawor original https://blog.rapid7.com/2022/05/27/the-forecast-is-flipped-flipping-l-d-enables-managers-to-be-impact-multipliers/

The Forecast Is Flipped: Flipping L&D Enables Managers to Be Impact Multipliers

At Rapid7, we recognize that managers are at the heart of our mission and are central to optimizing the potential of our people. So naturally, focusing on the growth and development of our manager population became critical to productivity, engagement, retention, and creating strong teams, as well as Rapid7’s overall success. From there, Manager Bootcamp 1.0 was created.

The history of Manager Boot Camp

The original, fully in-person program targeted newly hired or promoted managers and consisted of eight modules that ran over the course of two full days. The modules focused on the key skills managers would need to successfully manage a team at Rapid7, including sessions like coaching, delegation, team building, goal setting, feedback, and engagement, as well as an introduction to key partnerships and the overview of tactical elements and processes. The structure of the lessons was a blend of lectures, breakout activities, and group discussions.

Then the pandemic hit and historical face-to-face teaching practices were no longer an option. Overnight, all of People Dev’s sessions had to transform into virtual instructor-led sessions (VILT). Quickly realizing that two full days of online learning wouldn’t have the same impact or engagement as the previous live sessions, the team began the process of re-engineering the learning experience. In the spirit of Challenging Convention, over the course of 2020 and 2021, a variety of program formats were created, trialed, and iterated upon: A cohort model was introduced, both a 10- and five-week format were tested, learning was broken up between VILTs and peer discussion groups, lessons were a mix of instructor-led lectures and discussion prompts, and learnings were supplemented by optional, hour-long “Manager Core Skill” sessions that honed in on specific skills aligned to Rapid7’s Manager Effectiveness Bar.

Though the program’s feedback scores remained high, the team felt that in order to best support and empower Rapid7 Managers and shift learner behaviors in a growing, global, hybrid environment, they had to re-engineer the program even further — by flipping it. Senior People Development Specialist Carolyn Kirkman stated, “Flipped content allows learners to optimize the time in session for more application-based work… we are continuously trying to find the right approach, but this method — reserving session time for practical application — is a win for putting real-world skills to use.”

Flipping the boot: Manager Boot Camp 2022

At the start of 2022, the new, flipped eight-week Manager Boot Camp launched, with 48 participants split between two cohorts (North America and EMEA).

The new experience seamlessly tied together not only flipped content but also brand-new modules focusing on skills represented in Rapid7’s Manager Effectiveness Bar, as well as those necessary to support our growing business and teams. The delivery of content was a blend of prep work (pre-session) delivered via bite-sized learnings, live sessions, and post-session peer groups.

Kirsty McAleese, Senior People Development Specialist, notes, “Having the training sessions spread over eight weeks, using a flipped approach, gives managers the opportunity to practice what they’re learning before and in between sessions, which helps them to better retain and utilize their new skills,” and the design gives the team the ability to “engage a global audience without the boundaries of time and location, while maintaining peer-to-peer learning and application opportunities.”

To tailor the content and experience to each cohort’s needs and to ensure longer-term impact, the program begins and ends with a skills pulse check. Not only does this allow the team to compare pre/post program scores to ensure effectiveness, it also promotes self-awareness for the participants and encourages partnership with their own managers around their continued growth and development.

Recognizing that creating connections was a key element of success while working in a hybrid environment, the program uses individual Slack cohort channels, as well as Peer Discussion Groups to foster a sense of community and accountability, both prior to and throughout the program. In the Slack channel, managers can share information and seek help while the Peer Groups embody our value of an Impact Together by enabling peer learning and ongoing, thoughtful discussion and reflection around the most recent topics, as well as one-on-one time with the People Strategists.

When considering the content, People Dev leaned into the importance of cohesion and the flipped mindset. They knew it was key that the information being delivered aligned the skills being learned with Rapid7’s manager standards and the larger goals of the business. To ensure the greatest impact, they created prep work for foundational information and reflection, which allowed classroom time to be focused on practicing learned skills and connecting with business leaders and People Strategy.

“By transferring some of the theory content to prep-work, we are allowing the learner to have knowledge beforehand,” said Kirkman. “It allows for flexibility to learn on the go, at a time convenient to the learner. People enjoy having autonomy in regards to when they will learn. With a scaling, global audience, it’s important that we provide resources for asynchronous learning.” To further encourage asynchronous  learning, and streamline the flipped experience, the team built a one-stop-shop microsite containing supplemental materials that encourage a Never Done mindset both during and after the program.

At Rapid7, we believe managers are impact multipliers, responsible for building, growing, and optimizing the potential of their people, teams and ultimately the company. In regards to the new program, McAleese said, “The new modules [and experience] were designed to build a stronger bench of future leaders as well as meet the needs of our business in our bid to scale and close the security achievement gap – while also ensuring our managers have the skills needed to be champions for our people.“

Check out what some of our Moose are saying!

Program and Sessions

  • “What was discussed are all things I can implement and be mindful of in my management work.”
  • The class conversations and learnings have given me more tools to use as a manager… There was a great mix of tutorials and activities and sessions at the correct duration. Plenty of interactive conversations.”

Flipped Content

  • “Brilliant course. Compressed material provides a very detailed introduction to employee engagement and related aspects… Good starting point so I can then have the deeper conversations in session”
  • “I was able to do this training over a couple of hours between meetings. So that made it a great way to utilize in-between time… and [if needed] I could speed up the videos to match my ability and comprehension.”

Stay tuned, over the next several months, to dive deeper into how People Development will be introducing flipped content and other innovative practices into all of their programs for 2022 and beyond in our blog series, “The Forecast Is Flipped.”

Additional reading:


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The Rapid7 Sales Culture and Experience: An Inside Look From 2 VPs

Post Syndicated from Rapid7 original https://blog.rapid7.com/2022/05/27/the-rapid7-sales-culture-and-experience-an-inside-look-from-2-vps/

The Rapid7 Sales Culture and Experience: An Inside Look From 2 VPs

Sales roles are all about people. That holds true not only when you’re building relationships with prospects but also in your day-to-day experience on the team. Having the right culture and people around you can make or break your success, satisfaction, and long-term growth. If you’re a job seeker looking for a technology sales role, getting to know the people you’d be working with can help you understand if that company is a place you can flourish and advance your career to the next level.

We asked two experienced sales leaders — Dan Bidwell, Regional Vice President – Central; and Jason Doris, Regional Vice President – East — who recently joined Rapid7 to tell us a little bit about themselves, what’s most exciting about being on their teams, and why they chose Rapid7 as the next step in their professional journeys.

What was your background prior to coming to Rapid7?

Dan: I have had a lengthy career selling enterprise technology solutions for both large high-tech providers and startups. My career started with companies like NCR, Sun Microsystems, and Oracle. I left Oracle to pursue a path of working with early-stage startup companies such as Portal Software, Arcsight, Veracode, and Illumio. I enjoyed the cybersecurity space, and once I started, I never looked back.

Jason: After 25 years in the document capture and workflow industry, I transitioned to cybersecurity. I have an eclectic background, having sold in virtually every segment (enterprise, mid-market, consumer) and in every route to market (eCommerce, B2B direct and through the channel, OEM) including 14 years in global roles.

I am coming from Fastly, an edge computing cloud services company focused on website acceleration and web application and API protection. While there, I started a Financial Services vertical where we closed large deals with the likes of Goldman Sachs and PayPal. Most recently, as the RVP for the East, Fastly’s “Security First” strategy has helped take customers like HCA, Metlife, Foot Locker, and Assurant away from competitors like Akamai and Cloudflare.

How did you first find yourself in a sales role?

Dan: My first sales role was with NCR out of college. NCR provided two benefits — one, they had an extensive training program for people who had not sold high tech solutions. The second was that I worked for their Computer Systems Group, so I started selling both mini computers and manufacturing software from the beginning.

Jason: In college, I grew disenchanted as a Psychology major and changed my major to Business Administration late in the process. Directly out of college, I returned to the supermarkets that I worked in since I was 15 and entered the management trainee program. After rising to a department manager and experiencing 60-hour workweeks for 5 years, I took a chance on myself by entering a sales career. I believed that with my work ethic and lessons learned in a false start in grocery, and given a chance and a fair set of rules, that betting on myself would pay off — and it has.

How would others on your team describe you as a leader?

Dan: I strive to be a leader who is hands-on and works closely with his team. This is not code for micro management but rather being another member of the team who is there to assist and add value in any way possible to advance the cause. No job is too big or too small to help with.

Jason: I believe that my team would say that I lead from the front and by example, that I take the profession of sales seriously, that I am grounded and transparent, and that I am a positive, optimistic influence.

How do you define and measure success?

Dan: In sales, success is ultimately defined by quota achievement. But quota achievement cannot be attained unless you build and enable a team of sellers who have a passion and a belief in both the solution they are selling, and their customer’s success and satisfaction with that solution.

Jason: I see success as achieving goals on one’s career arc and personal financial goals arc, while positively contributing to a company’s team selling culture.

What has surprised you or changed your ideas about what it means to be in sales?

Dan: If you observe sales from the outside, you may feel it’s about the individual, but the reality is that it’s about the team.

Jason: Mature athletes at the highest levels often refer to the game “slowing down” for them as they gained experience and became more successful. Despite what I would have initially believed, this is exactly what I have experienced: I started out selling on adrenalin and threw myself at my customers and prospects. Since then, I’ve planned my attack, listened more, had more opportunities sought the advice of others, practiced conversations, surrounded myself with smart people, and focused on the needs of customers.

What do you think are the most important elements of a successful, thriving sales team

Dan: The team needs to understand that you cannot go it alone. It can take a village to land a deal. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Ask early, and ask often. And be willing to offer help to your teammates, as well.

Jason: Curiosity, creativity, energy, resourcefulness, resilience, and a willingness to bet on oneself.

What made you choose Rapid7 for this chapter in your career?

Dan: I have admired what Rapid7 has done and I am excited about where they are going in the future. I believe they have the right solutions at the right time. Rapid7 has a great culture, strong executive leadership and the company is financially strong.

Jason: I was looking for an important role at a growing security software provider with deep enterprise aspirations and a great culture. At Rapid7, what I found is an expanding portfolio with a high cross-sell ceiling and engaging conversation with everyone I’ve met. In our transition — largely from a mid-market, one- to two-product selling motion to that of an enterprise portfolio or platform company — the need for developing deep relationships with customers and the channel is key, and that’s something I enjoy and can help with.

What’s ahead for your sales teams at Rapid7? What kinds of opportunities and experiences can those who join expect?

Dan: What is ahead is an exciting ride. There will be plenty of challenges, victories, and fun. I expect we will build relationships that will last a lifetime.

Jason: Rapid7 is growing rapidly while learning to be more efficient at scale. We are not opportunity-constrained in the market, and we rely on a balanced approach — both landing new customers and expanding the ones we have. Sellers can expect to learn a diverse strategic approach from peers while given the freedom to develop and apply their best ideas.

Why should those looking to start or grow in sales roles bring their talents to Rapid7?

Dan: Rapid7 is a great place to learn, grow, and flourish. I can’t think of a better company to start and evolve your technology career.

Jason: Diversity in experiences, an excellent selling culture, and great technology. We also have stakeholders who are willing and able to help, as well as generous awards for those who succeed.

As you think about the year ahead in your role and at Rapid7, what are you most excited for?

Dan: Success!! As mentioned before, I believe we have the right products for us to meet and exceed our customer’s needs, and this is an exciting time where cybersecurity has become more of a “must have” than a “nice to have” for companies across all industries. I look forward to leading my team through the many wins and inevitable learning opportunities that are before us.

Jason: Learning, growing, and digging deep. Learning how to apply the benefits of our technology on the most important customer needs and challenges. Growing as a leader by surrounding myself with smart and ambitious sellers and applying the best suggestions early and often. Digging deep by immersing myself in customer and partner relationships.

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7 Rapid Questions: Meet Adrian Stewart, Aspiring Pilot Turned Product Manager

Post Syndicated from Rapid7 original https://blog.rapid7.com/2022/04/08/7-rapid-questions-meet-adrian-stewart-aspiring-pilot-turned-product-manager/

7 Rapid Questions: Meet Adrian Stewart, Aspiring Pilot Turned Product Manager

Welcome back to 7 Rapid Questions, our blog series where we ask passionate leaders at Rapid7 how they’re challenging convention and making an impact. In this installment, we talk to Adrian Stewart, a product manager working on InsightAppSec, Rapid7’s dynamic application security testing (DAST) tool.

7 Rapid Questions: Meet Adrian Stewart, Aspiring Pilot Turned Product Manager
Adrian Stewart, Lead Product Manager, VRM – Belfast

How have you grown professionally since joining Rapid7?

The majority of my career has been as an individual contributor, which is where I’ve felt most comfortable. I’m now becoming more involved with the people management side, and at Rapid7, I’ve been lucky enough to work for some amazing leaders. I’ve really learned a lot, and Rapid7 as an organization has also been incredibly proactive for my career progression and continued learning.

What 3 words would you use to describe the culture at Rapid7?

Inclusive, supportive, and surprising. Every organization should strive to be inclusive and supportive, but Rapid7 nails it. Whatever is happening in your day to day, whatever inevitable misunderstandings occur when communication might not be optimal, Rapid7 and the herd have your back, always and without question. I’ve been around long enough to know this is the exception, not the rule. My expectations are constantly exceeded when Rapid7 puts the herd first.

What advice would you give a candidate to stand out in the interview process?

Know your audience. Research on the company executives, products, and locations is a start but not what makes Rapid7 an amazing place to work. Look at the Rapid7 core values and ask how your own values align, because that is where the win-win will come from.

When (or where) are you most productive?

In the office, without a doubt. One chat is worth a thousand Slack conversations.

Which of our core values do you embody the most?

Challenge Convention is the most obvious one. I am constantly asking, “Why is it like this, and how could it be better?” The key is to take a breath and listen to the answers.

What is it that makes cybersecurity such an exciting field?

There are a couple of things to call out, the first being the steep learning curve. It’s impossible to stagnate or become bored as the world realizes why cybersecurity is actually important. The second is, we actually help people. I don’t do this job purely for altruism – I do get paid as well – but knowing that helping our customers protect themselves and their customers is incredibly important for me as a person.

What did you want to be when you grew up?

A pilot, but my colorblindness put paid to that. Weirdly, believe it or not, my second choice was programmer, which was almost as unlikely as pilot because this was in the pre-internet days.

Want to join Adrian and his team? We’re hiring! Browse our open roles at Rapid7 here.

Additional reading:

The Forecast Is Flipped: Flipping L&D in New Hire Training

Post Syndicated from Megan Yawor original https://blog.rapid7.com/2022/04/06/the-forecast-is-flipped-flipping-l-d-in-new-hire-training/

The Forecast Is Flipped: Flipping L&D in New Hire Training

Rapid7’s onboarding program, Making the Band, first came to the stage in the fall of 2017 when the original 2-week, video-based program evolved into a dynamic 90-day experience. The updated program delivered learnings to new hires through digital self-paced content and a 2-day live training focused on tactical elements, as well as foundational company knowledge.

However, in the spirit of Never Done, the Rapid7 People Development team challenged convention and recently evolved the onboarding program to address the needs of our evolving business and the future of work.

After analyzing the current state of the program, People Development realized that what was needed was a streamlined experience that supported and connected a growing, hybrid company, as well as one that aligned and prepared employees for role-specific success, regardless of their location or position.

The goal of this work was to reimagine the current onboarding process in a way that sustained the essence of the original 2017 experience, but also adapted and scaled as we onboarded a global new hire population. This would be achieved by keeping ALL Moose in mind, curating opportunities that built connections in this new normal, emphasizing the importance and impact of our culture, and seamlessly guiding new Moose through the fundamentals in order to shorten their time to impact.

Flipped learning: Delivering a vision for evolution

A primary focus for Rapid7’s People Strategy team is to help our Moose build the best career experience. Onboarding is the first step to building this experience. Denee D’Andrea, Sr. People Development Specialist and visionary behind the evolved program, recognized this and wanted to ensure that the program delivered the right content at the right time. This resulted in a new global onboarding experience that extended beyond one-and-done live sessions and self-paced content to a full, multifaceted experience, using blended learning and flipped-classroom approaches.

D’Andrea’s new onboarding vision focused on 3 key phases grounded in our Core Values: Connection, Impact in Your Role, and Embodiment of Bring You.

Rapid7 recognized creating connections was a key element of success while working in a hybrid environment. Because of that, D’Andrea partnered with organizations across the business to ensure opportunities for connection were threaded throughout the entire program. The Connection piece was fostered using the flipped approach – meaning the majority of “classroom time” was spent teaching through discussions led by Rapid7 Culture Ambassadors (our own Moose!) and subject matter experts.

Additionally, to stay true to the Challenge Convention mindset, I created a fully virtual, interactive multi-phase challenge with the goal of further encouraging connections. By navigating animations, digital games, and customized puzzles and codes, new hires were introduced to the security landscape, customer challenges, and Rapid7’s portfolio. The intentional design of the challenge provided the space and activities to encourage discussion and collaboration towards a common goal. New Moose would not only connect with each other (regardless of their location) but also feel like they were connecting with Rapid7’s history, culture, and Core Values.

Next, Impact in your Role focused on encouraging the Never Done mindset and highlighted the connection between individual growth and the success of our teams, customers, and the company as a whole. This mindset was woven throughout the entire 90 days, both within “classroom time” and in the on-demand, self-paced digital content. To create the most impactful learning environment, the team again utilized the flipped classroom. Live sessions provided collaborative learning and discussion opportunities, and then digital flipped-learning materials further fleshed out the learnings. This design ensured New Moose not only benefited from social learning but also fostered accountability to their development both during and beyond the onboarding experience.

And finally, Embodiment of Bring You. At Rapid7, we truly want our people to bring their authentic selves to their work because we believe that these unique perspectives, ideas, and values enable us to Challenge Convention and enhance the work we do. The final piece of the program, an experiential learning challenge, encouraged New Moose to embrace the value Bring You while collaborating with their cohort and Culture Ambassadors to build their cross-functional network.

The New New Moose

On January 3, 2022, this new program launched, for the first time, with a cohort of 43 New Moose. Since then, over 370 Moose, globally, have engaged with the program.

And how has it been? EPIC.

Making the Band is where our New Moose start building the career experience of a lifetime.This program not only motivates and empowers employees to embody our Core Values but also helps them to understand that we are #onemoose, and when we Impact Together, we accelerate together.

Check out what some of our New Moose are saying!

The program

  • “AWESOME… Onboarding has been an incredible experience so far… One of the best onboarding experiences I have had in my professional career… I believe Rapid7 has an amazing and talented team facilitating the onboarding experience.”

Virtual, interactive challenge (“Insuring” the Security of MiracleMoose Insurance)

  • “That was fun and engaging… The group roles/participation were great…it was a fun way to collaborate with my fellow new Moose… and the content was highly engaging which provided a meaningful intro to Rapid7’s portfolio and the customer while also fostering communication and critical thinking skills.”

Stay tuned over the next several months to dive deeper into how People Development will be introducing flipped content and other innovative practices into all of their programs for 2022 and beyond in our blog series, “The Forecast Is Flipped.”

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Reflecting on Women’s History Month at Rapid7

Post Syndicated from Rapid7 original https://blog.rapid7.com/2022/03/24/reflecting-on-womens-history-month-at-rapid7/

Reflecting on Women’s History Month at Rapid7

During Women’s History Month, we invited some of our team members to share their best advice for other women in technology, celebrate their strengths, and reflect on how they’ve challenged convention within their roles and built their networks.

Reflecting on Women’s History Month at Rapid7

What is the best advice that someone has given you in your career?

Nino Nardize, Director, Technical Customer Success: One piece of advice that resonated with me early on was that you have to be comfortable making decisions with only 80% of the information available. That stuck with me because I think, as women, sometimes we feel we need to have all of the information, be 100% qualified for a role, or be able to achieve perfection. In reality, things don’t always work out that way. I’ve found it’s important to ask ourselves, “Have we done our best to gather the right information in relation to this decision?” Even if that means we still have things outstanding, that’s OK. We have to be comfortable with taking risks and feeling good about moving forward with what we have in front of us.

Jane Man, Director, Product Management – VRM: The most important advice I got early on was to be open and always look for opportunities to grow. If you are at a point in your career where you think to yourself, “I’ve got this,” and you know exactly what you are doing every day, you probably aren’t being challenged enough. This perspective has always pushed me to look for areas where I don’t feel comfortable and to seek out areas to grow my career — and myself as a person.

Jessica Reinne, Account Executive, Large: As a sales executive, the best advice I received was that buying is emotional, and people buy products most often from people they trust and have a relationship with. I’ve found firsthand that once you establish that rapport, people will want to engage with you and either communicate what they need in order to move forward or — just as valuable — tell you why they aren’t moving forward or why something isn’t actually working. When you have that open dialogue, you can really be a better partner to them, versus trying to sell them something they aren’t bought into.

Noreen Camelo, VP Enterprise Applications: One piece of advice I heard was to be brave, be brilliant, but be brief. I think this is important because sometimes we can get caught up in explaining our ideas or spend too much time setting the stage. As you progress in your career and are working with executives, it’s important that your key message comes across very clearly, as everyone is pressed for time. Be brave and speak up when you see opportunities, be brilliant and always keep challenging convention, but be brief and make sure to get your thoughts across in a succinct way.

Sarah Sidford, Manager, Commercial Sales: In life, and especially for women, it sometimes can feel like you’re trying to juggle a bunch of different balls in the air. You have your career as one ball, your travel plans as another, your family as another, your social life, and so on. It’s important to remember that most of those balls are rubber, if you drop them, they will bounce right back and be OK. But family and health are two that are glass — and you can never, ever drop them. Keeping perspective about what’s really important with a focus on family and health being most important can help you prioritize and know when you need to let go of another one of those rubber balls.

Paola Chadwell, VP, Customer Success Management: Always advocate for yourself — especially when negotiating your salary. I think, as women, we hesitate to ask for more because we’re afraid we will lose the offer that’s already on the table. In reality, the worst someone can say is no, or maybe they don’t go as high as you ask but are able to meet you in the middle somewhere. I’ve negotiated every salary throughout my career, and I think it’s helped me to own my voice and advocate for my worth.

Turning that around, what advice would you give to women who are early in their career and looking to challenge convention?

Jane Man: I would say to be confident in your own voice. At the end of the day, the goal is to create a better solution and work more effectively, and that means that when you have something to add, it’s your responsibility to speak up and you shouldn’t be afraid to do that — because it makes all of us better and stronger.

Paola Chadwell: When I was younger, I moved around a lot. The process of putting myself out there and making friends throughout childhood has translated into my ability to build strong relationships in my career. I’m in customer success, so I have to not only build strong relationships with our customers, but I also be able to have internal and cross-functional relationships so that I can be a better advocate for our customer needs and deliver the right solutions for their needs.

Nino Nardize: In the workplace, there are a number of different ways that each individual can contribute at a given time. Whether it’s in meetings or through a one-to-one conversation, each person’s ability to influence others can be a little bit different. Find where you are most comfortable and can create impact in a meaningful way and lean into that — don’t fight it to be something you are not.

How are you challenging convention in your role at Rapid7?

Sarah Sidford: I think one way that I challenge convention is that I am very vocal about the need to hire more women in sales. There are still so many double standards for women in sales — we might describe a male as being assertive and have a positive association with that behavior, but when a woman is assertive, we’re quick to judge her as being pushy. The more we can prioritize diversifying our teams, the more we can start to challenge these stereotypes. I think a lot of times, people hire people who remind them of themselves — so if we have more men in leadership positions doing the hiring, how does it hurt those efforts if they are carrying that internal bias? I’m working closely with our talent acquisition team to really change the traditional landscape of sales and prioritize bringing a more balanced workforce into the field.

Jessica Rennie: I’m someone who is really open-minded and willing to try new things. One example is that when I joined the company, I saw an opportunity and went out on a limb to create a new program. At first, it can be challenging to get something like this that is new up and running, but we were able to create this network of give and get with our prospects that has ultimately benefited our business and our sales organization. It was great to be able to formulate a vision and strategy and be supported along the way by my manager and peers.

Nino Nardize: I challenge convention by encouraging different perspectives. Diversity of thought and experiences is a crucial component to any team. I can only be one voice, and my voice is reflective of my own personal journey. Whenever we are having a crucial conversation, we need to have the representation of multiple perspectives in order to make educated decisions. Asking ourselves, “What else are we missing? Are there too many voices from one business group and not enough from another?” can lead to a better decision and product in the end.

What strengths do you believe your identity and personal experiences bring to your role?

Jane Man: I come from an immigrant family. My parents immigrated from the big city of Hong Kong to the tiny island nation of New Zealand. Through my experiences, I’ve become interested in what makes people think a certain way, and I often find myself asking questions that dig into what we are doing and the purpose or “why” behind it. That natural curiosity is something that comes from being part of that small island community.

Jessica Reinne: I didn’t come from a cybersecurity background prior to Rapid7, but I was in the startup world. Some of the places I worked earlier in my career were so new that on some days the heat didn’t even work or the lights wouldn’t turn on — so I experienced the early growth grind that happens in the technology world where you have this pressure to prove yourself and everyone’s work has such a direct impact on the company. I developed almost this chip on my shoulder where I really want to push myself and always have that grit and determination. Doing it at Rapid7, where we are so established and have not only a great team and product but great amenities and support systems, really just puts it on a whole new level.

Noreen Camelo: I bring a lot of optimism to my team, and I think some of that comes from my past roles and being able to put things into perspective. Earlier in my career I worked in Oncology, so there was a lot of pressure around our decisions because of the impact it had on patients’ lives. When we feel stressed out or a task seems too big for us to tackle, I try to help my team keep things in perspective so they can prioritize, while encouraging them to find creative solutions. I really do believe that there is no challenge we cannot solve as long as we are willing to take the right amount of time and work together.

It’s often said that an important part of being successful is building a supportive network around you. How have you built your own personal network, and how has it helped you be successful?

Paola Chadwell: I think, first off, women sometimes have a tendency to look at other women as competition rather than allies. That’s not a mindset I ever want to have or that I want to encourage people to challenge, because we all have so much to add and to contribute to one another. I’ve been so lucky to have been surrounded by such strong and powerful women at Rapid7 and at previous companies. I’ve been monitored by them and have also been able to be a mentor to them at times. The beautiful thing about building a network and having a mentor is that it becomes a two-way street. We have so much to learn from one another and can really help each other grow.

Noreen Camelo: I’ve built my network through the different roles and companies I’ve been at. It’s been a proactive experience of reaching out and staying in touch, and the result is a diverse network of people to lean on where we can all give guidance to each other at different points. What I’ve experienced is that your network is a huge part of advancing your career, as well as rounding you out as the leader you are.

Sarah Sidford: I’m grateful to have been able to create such a great network of women around  me. In sales, it’s important to have relationships where you can be honest about what you’re going through and can talk about when you are having a hard day or when things are also going well. As women, we don’t want to share our struggles and appear weak, but then at the same time, you don’t want to celebrate or you will be seen as braggadocious — so you need to have a safe space to share that vulnerability and the highs and the lows, especially when it’s people who have also been through it and who can share their experiences with you, too. Whether it’s asking about what to wear to a client onsite or working through a unique challenge with a customer, having that safe space can help you feel so much more prepared and empowered. As a leader, that’s the kind of space I want to create with my team.

Want join our team? We’re hiring! Browse our open roles at Rapid7 here.

Additional reading:

7Rapid Questions: Growing From BDR to Commercial Sales Manager With Maria Loughrey

Post Syndicated from Rapid7 original https://blog.rapid7.com/2022/03/10/7rapid-questions-growing-from-bdr-to-commercial-sales-manager-with-maria-loughrey/

7Rapid Questions: Growing From BDR to Commercial Sales Manager With Maria Loughrey

Welcome back to 7Rapid Questions, our blog series where we hear about the great work happening at Rapid7 from the people who are doing it across our global offices. For this installment, we sat down with Maria Loughrey, Commercial Sales Manager for the UK and Ireland at our Reading, UK office.

7Rapid Questions: Growing From BDR to Commercial Sales Manager With Maria Loughrey
Maria Loughrey

What did you want to be when you grew up?

After a brief stint of wanting to go to America to study law at Harvard (thank you, “Legally Blonde”), I ended up studying psychology and wanted to become a forensic psychologist.

So, how did you end up in cybersecurity?

I was approached by a recruitment partner of Rapid7, which prompted me to research what cybersecurity was all about. I found that not only is it a super interesting topic, but people are really passionate about it. It was evident how much Rapid7 cared about their customers’ security and, in turn, how much customers respected them as a vendor. It took a bit of a leap of faith to step away from my career plan and start working for a company I knew very little about, but I’m so glad I did!

What has your career journey been like at Rapid7?

Since the aforementioned leap of faith, Rapid7 haven’t stopped putting their faith in me in return. I started in the business development team and then got promoted into a sales overlay role supporting the Account Executive team. I’ve been in sales ever since — starting with SMB customers, then mid-market accounts, and more recently covering the Enterprise market in the UK.

Last year, I became a team lead alongside my Enterprise AE role, and then at the beginning of this year, I was promoted into a management position to support the Commercial Sales team. The support and belief I have received from Rapid7 and my management team over the last 8 years have been truly humbling.

What has been your proudest moment?

It was bittersweet moving into a management position this year, as it meant not working directly with customers as much, but when I introduced new team members who would be stepping into my role, so many customers had such lovely things to say and let me know that I’d be missed. It’s amazing to hear that you’ve had such a positive impact.

What is a fun fact some people might not know about you?

I have a very mild form of Tourette syndrome, which causes people to have “tics.”

Which of Rapid7’s core values do you embody the most?

Bring You. This is SUCH a difficult question, but I chose Bring You because not only do I strive to be my most authentic self at work, but I also think it’s incredibly important for everyone to bring their own perspectives and style. Businesses thrive on diversity of mindset. Without this, creativity becomes stagnant and growth slows. So, Bring You.

What three words would you use to describe the culture at Rapid7?

Understanding, inclusive, genuine.

Want to join Maria and her team? We’re hiring! Browse our open roles at Rapid7 here.

Additional reading:

The Forecast Is Flipped: How Rapid7 Is Flipping L&D for the Future of Work

Post Syndicated from Megan Yawor original https://blog.rapid7.com/2022/02/11/the-forecast-is-flipped-how-rapid7-is-flipping-l-d-for-the-future-of-work/

The Forecast Is Flipped: How Rapid7 Is Flipping L&D for the Future of Work

The last 2 years have turned the world on its head, and now, companies across the globe are transitioning into a new normal. In this hybrid world, employee engagement is a moving target, the market is more competitive, and historical face-to-face teaching practices are no longer viable. Rapid7’s People Development team is leaning into innovation, striving to define the next best practice, and reimagining the possibilities of hybrid learning.

Focused on supporting employees (or Moose, as we call ourselves here at Rapid7) on their unique development journeys and the embodiment of our Core Values, People Development noted, “Our peoples’ feedback, hybrid work, and our company goals are pointing us in a new direction. So the question becomes, what is People Development’s next evolution in learning? We realize our programs must not only be aligned, impactful, and engaging but also scalable and accessible to our global audience. Additionally, further developing and fostering an environment where continuous learning is woven into our everyday employee experience is key.”

People Dev is flipping over flipped content

So, what could this next evolution look like? People Development’s answer: flipped.

The flipped classroom is a blended learning method that reverses the traditional teaching approach of live session lectures to live sessions focused on discussion and practice. Studies show that flipped learning results in higher engagement, observable behavior shifts, and greater retention of information.

In 2022, through the introduction of flipped learning, we will see People Development raise the bar and innovate as they evolve their current trainings into fuller, more robust learning experiences. These programs will be built around a connected story with a more intentional focus on the “why” and “how,” enabling employees to better see the connection between their learnings, their personal development, and the impact they have on the business. People Dev will strategically design flipped experiences that offer the right learning, at the right time, coupling live sessions with self-paced content, discussion groups, and lab environments. To further engage and enable employees, they will enhance these flipped experiences by utilizing carefully crafted delivery methods such as eLearnings, interactive challenges, virtual scenarios, and customized program hubs.

Technology will be key as we flip our trainings into dynamic learning experiences that provide the same opportunities for learning and engagement to all Moose. Director of People Development Maureen Spalluto said their goal is to “ensure that the skills and behaviors we prioritize in our programs align with the strategic needs of the business,” and moving forward, People Development will utilize flipped content to “maximize ILT (instructor-led training) time… and ensure our Moose are provided with time to practice, gain feedback, and foster accountability around learned skills.”

The unique design of these learning experiences will enhance program effectiveness, empowering employees to own their own development by meeting them where they are, regardless of role, tenure, or location, and further support their ability to embody our core value of Never Done.

Never Done is rooted in the idea of continuous learning, but that’s just the beginning. It’s about individuals bringing their authentic selves, committing to a higher bar, and continuing to learn the skills and behaviors needed to re-engineer experiences. The Never Done mindset is foundational to embodying our other Core Values — supporting innovation to Challenge Convention, honing skills to master complex collaborations and Impact Together, and strengthening practices that create world-class experiences and allow us to Be Advocates for our customers. People Development’s embodiment of Never Done and their passion around Challenging Convention will not only help scale their offerings but also transform their programs into adaptive, active learning environments where employees can learn at their own pace, engage in real-world scenarios, be accountable for their development, and leave trainings feeling confident in their ability to demonstrate and apply new skills and techniques.

A glimpse into People Dev’s flipped content

By Denée DAndrea, Katie Almanzan, Carolyn Kirkman, Kirsty McAleese, and Megan Yawor

  • New Hires – We will use flipped content to create an onboarding experience that extends beyond one-and-done live sessions and self-paced content. We will create a journey that gives New Moose weekly opportunities to engage with relevant content, reflect on and apply learnings with their peers, connect with their cohort, and participate in experiential learning.
  • All Moose – Our learning opportunities will utilize flipped learning by combining self-paced digital assignments, live sessions, and partner activities to foster meaningful connections, provide access to learning that supports a growing global business, and encourage employee accountability.
  • Emerging Moose Development Program (Emerging Leaders) – Focused on content that is customized and aligned to Rapid7’s business strategies, our Emerging Leaders program will use the collaborative, interactive, and application-based aspects of a flipped classroom to maximize classroom time, deepen connections, and encourage a more focused, hybrid learning experience.
  • Moose Managers – To better support our Managers to optimize the potential of their people, teams, and the company, we will introduce flipped content through community learning opportunities and a variety of digital, self-paced learning materials, allowing for increased practice and application opportunities during live ILT time.
  • Experience and Technology – The goal is to find innovative uses for existing tools as well as incorporate new technologies, as needed, to ensure our flipped content not only tells a story and feels part of a whole but is also seamless, relevant, and exciting.

As we think about re-engineering our programs for 2022 and beyond, we have to consider what will work best to support a hybrid, global workforce and what will create thoughtful learning experiences that support individuals, their careers, the business, and our customers. The answer is clear: flipped content, and we can’t wait to see it in action.

Flipped content is just the beginning for People Development. As Rapid7 works to establish the new normal, People Dev will continue to reimagine their programs and learning experiences in order to create the best possible training grounds and career pathways for technical talent, emerging leaders, and those early in their careers. The team will look to not only evolve their work but also enable and support our Moose to understand how and where to apply what they are learning so they can develop at their own pace. Ultimately, empowering our people to own their own careers and build their journey with us.

Stay tuned over the next several months to dive deeper into how People Development will be introducing flipped content and other innovative practices into all of their programs for 2022 and beyond in our new blog series, “The Forecast Is Flipped.”

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