Trevor Owen, a would-be Artist, is a self-taught IT expert working around the globe. While going to college to be an artist, this professed “car nut” fell into a IT data entry job which turned his entire career around; today he’s helping an international company meet its clients needs around the world. And his skills are self-taught!
Who would have expected that a self-taught IT technician that’s a professed automobile “gear head” who loves tinkering with cars, and builds decks and fences in his “spare time,” would turn out to be a NetEffects’ project manager/business analyst working all over the world for one of the world’s most technological companies?
Well believe it or not (with apologies to Ripley), that’s exactly what Trevor Owen is…and does.
A native St. Louisan and one of NetEffects newest consultants, Trevor was schooled to be an artist but soon discovered he had a greater talent for working with people in business. Trevor owes much of his success to being raised within a family of entrepreneurs. “My great grandfather owned a General Store in the Ozarks and my parents have had a successful antiquing business for over 30 years, as I was growing up it was easy to learn about business and keeping happy customers” says Trevor.
“I kind of fell into IT when I went to work for a health insurance company, kind of learning on the fly,” he said. “I don’t know how it happened, I was young, I was impressed with this company during an interview and they started me in the data entry unit.”
And that’s all Trevor needed because he is a quick, self-learner. He began absorbing IT processes, taught himself what he didn’t know by finding out where to learn about it, and quickly moved up the ladder to managing people and then managing projects. As the Internet was growing in popularity about this time, he taught himself web development, HTML and then advanced programming.“
“I had some great mentors along the way,” he admits. “When I was going to school, advanced programming languages were changing so much, and so quickly, that whatever a person learned in college would be obsolete by graduation time. So I had to continue to teach myself.” Trevor considers himself a lifetime learner.
And that learning has paid off for him. For six years he was part of a very successful internet startup company working in the healthcare field, developing innovative web-based business application support services for consumers and providers.
“Working in a startup company was one of the biggest gambles you can make with your career, but turned out for me to be the most valuable work experiences of my life,” Trevor said. However, when the business moved to California he opted to stay here, “To see what else was out there.” During that search, NetEffects found, and hired, him.
“I’ve never been a contractor before so this is new and exciting for me. But I’ve learned that sometimes people treat you as a ‘second class citizen’ and you certainly don’t get recognition too often. You want to do a good job, but there’s not a lot of feedback.”
To that end, he was pleased and surprised when the NetEffects team showed up one day to throw a pizza party for his entire team, because he had been cited by his employer for doing a great job on a project. (Trevor is one of our three consultants cited in this month’s “excellence in performance” listed on the front page of this month’s enewsletter.)
“It proves I was right to select NetEffects. Certainly they provide great pay and benefits, but what I found more important was that they cared what I was all about. Other companies I interviewed with didn’t take as much personal interest in my career. NetEffects is a special company.”
Today, as a project manager/business analyst, Trevor is working around the globe in his current assignment. Working in the Emerging Internet Solutions department, he touches almost every aspect of the company’s web business, including cardholder promotions, premium offers for the affluent market, and supporting multiple business owners around the world. On any day you can find him working (via the net of course) in Brazil, Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, Singapore or Canada…oh yes, and occasionally the U.S.
Single, he lives with his seven-year-old dog Lily, a Treeing Walker Coonhound. “She looks like a beagle with long, long legs.”
Trevor does a lot of work outdoors and really enjoys working out at the gym (“I do a lot of exercise work” and in fact used to be a part-time personal trainer), but most of all loves to work on cars of any age and browse local car shows.
“I’m a big gear head, a self-professed car nut,” he candidly admits. Although he enjoys tinkering on older collectable cars, he won’t own any. “They can be BIG money traps.”
He also is a self-taught contractor and landscaper; saw a neighbor doing some construction and said, “I can do that.” And he did. Today he will do some contractor work building decks and fences, and even landscaping, when he has time.
At some point in the future, maybe 20 years, he says whimsically, “I’ll move to Key West and learn how to build boats…and live on a beach.”
You can count on that happening!