Meet the Team: Maketa - Toric's Brand Strategy Manager

How long have you worked at Toric and why did you join?

I've been at Toric since June 2020. It felt like a very exciting opportunity. I was working at a few non-profits, and I missed the pace of a startup. I was excited about Toric because it solved a real pain point and problem that I am passionate about data. Plus I liked the team and culture. I was one of the earlier employees so it’s been really great to see how the company has grown just in two years. 

I love UX and marketing, and I believe I take it to the next level when bringing strategy into it. I've done conceptual designs for Apple, the NFL, and other companies. I care most about connecting all the dots, and I get to do that at Toric, and that's really awesome. 

What is the coolest thing you’ve worked on during your time here?

The discover and learn section of the app. Really just making sure that our customers, users, and fans understand just the power of Toric because it's such a powerful tool. 

What does your day look like? 

I look at my calendar at my day, and I tackle the day according to the most important priorities to move the product forward in terms of product understanding and branding

I usually break up my day with deep work in the morning and admin items in the afternoon.

What are your favorite tools to work with at Toric? 

So Figma obviously for, you know, designer, but I pretty much spend most of my time in Figma and Notion is my jam as a brand strategy manager.

As a woman in tech, how has your experience at Toric?

At Toric, I feel supported, and I don't take that for granted as a woman in tech. Because I've I know what it is like not feeling supported. I’m so excited about not only the product we’re building but also the culture where you can thrive as a woman in tech. 

I feel like I could be my whole self here, and that's a powerful experience as a Black woman. So I appreciate that, and that's one of the reasons I look forward to continuing to grow with Toric is because I see opportunities here. I don't feel excluded, my work & input is valuable, and I think that can be hard for women like myself to find in Tech, sometimes.

What communities do you participate in?

I'm pretty active within the Interaction Design community, AIGA (the professional organization for design), I mentor several other younger women in UX, and finally I love being a part of Google’s Women Techmaker. 

Women Techmakers actually sent me to London before for a Flutter event, their open source development tool to build apps. Even though like I'm a UX designer + Brand Strategist,  I still enjoy branching off into different technical skills.

How do you interact with leadership?

One of the things I love most about Toric is how accessible and helpful the team is. I reach out to leadership whenever I have a question. Renato and Thiago are absolutely amazing, and I feel like I've just grown so much if a designer here.

One of my favorite things about working at Toric and startups, in general, is that being part of this process quadruples your growth because you're doing so much, and it’s incredible to reflect on.

Some of the most underrated tools that you can be given in your tech career are sponsors and mentors, and you'll find both at Toric. It's one thing to have someone believe in you and there's another thing to have someone advocate for a trajectory and your career and actually be on board. 

And I've personally experienced both at Toric, which is why I was able to switch roles so quickly because I had that support and mentorship from my direct supervisors. I’ve moved from being a UX designer to Brand Strategist. 

What is something that you wish people knew about you? 

I think something that was surprised by people is that I started my career in architecture, so working at Toric has been a full-circle moment for me. I’ve always loved the design, building things, and tinkering with things so I’m so excited to continue to help on a different side.

What do you like most about the team culture at Toric? 

 I love that we have like a slack channel -#celebration-station, cause I can kind of like be silly. I'm like a big fan of gifs. I like that we make an effort to do team-building activities that are friendly to our remote environment.

Also, I really like hackathons. Angel, Anthony, and I made a magazine for our 2021 hackathon which has basically turned into the blog now it was great to see the idea come to life. 

What is your favorite Data App?

My favorite Data App last year was the COVID Data App and just being able to like track the changes in there so quickly, especially since this is a real-time situation, was awesome to me.

I also enjoy the fun Data Apps, like breakdowns of Halloween Candy, St. Patricks Day, and I think we have an Earth Day Data App coming out soon, too.

Future product item you are excited for?

I’m super excited to see Discover & Learn feature that Renato and I work on the land in the product soon, I think it’s going to help increase understanding of the product. I’m also eager to see multiplayer and collaboration features to be developed at some point too!

Fun questions

What’s your favorite snack?

I love baking. I love everything sweet right now I am really into making cinnamon rolls.

What’s the best place you’ve ever traveled?

Hawaii due to volcanology. I’m obsessed with volcanology and geology. 

What’s your favorite way to spend a weekend?

I love hiking or exploring with my husband.

What’s the best book you’ve read recently?

Indistractable: How to Control Your Attention and Choose Your Life by Nir Eyal

What’s something you’ve binged on Netflix recently?

I'm really into sci-fi & fantasy. So I loved binging Witcher.

Early bird or night owl?

I used to be a night owl, but like I wake up at 5 or 6 now, so I guess I’m an early bird which is kind of annoying.

Pets?  

I did not have any pets that I love dogs and I feel like need to get a dog this year. 


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