Coffee Break with EM – Tim Walls

This week, join us to get to know better the man behind the Group Architect, the one and only Tim Walls!  

How did your EveryMatrix career start? What’s your favorite thing about working here?
About a decade ago, while exploring Europe by night trains, I accidentally fell in love with the messy, chaotic, occasionally beautiful but always brilliant city of Bucharest.  After a couple of years of an unhealthy amount of visiting, I decided I could probably save a few airmiles by just moving here – and since I’ve been in Betting & Gaming since 1999, EveryMatrix was the logical step; the rest I guess is history. Apart from the city and the country, I guess my favorite thing is being able to (hopefully) help enthusiastic and good people solve problems!

What was your first job?
“Your Commodore” magazine in the UK paid me to publish some software I wrote for the Commodore 64 when I was twelve, does that count? Probably not – but I guess that might have been what set me on this career path. More seriously, after the usual jobs through school and university (shop work, call center, that sort of thing,) my first ‘real’ job was as a Research Scientist at Philips Research Laboratories, where I was lucky enough to work on some of the earliest technologies that brought the Internet to mobile devices.

What’s one of your biggest work pet peeves?
When I worked in the print shop at school, we had a sign above the door that said, “your bad planning is not our emergency.” I realize now that what seemed funny as a teenager is timeless advice that can be applied everywhere through the ages.

Are you an early bird or a night owl? Give us your top productivity piece of advice. 
I am a firm believer in the concept of Flow, that elusive state of total focus on a task – especially a problem-solving or creative task – that finds you at your most productive.  When it comes to you – whether morning or night – is less important than embracing it when it does. Unfortunately, flow is more easily lost than attained, and a single interruption can set you back hours – so my productivity tip would be not to be afraid to use the tools you have to manage your time: book time from your diary for tasks that require high concentration, set your status in Teams to ‘do not disturb’, and turn off your Discord.

What personality trait do you most attribute your success to, and why? 
I wouldn’t use the word success… But I guess the better decisions I have made have been the ones when I was able to remember that, while designing perfectly technical solutions may be great, technical perfection is no good if you can’t sustain your business while you get there. As Voltaire said, “the best is the enemy of the good” – so I guess if pragmatism is a personality trait, it’s useful.

What would you tell your younger self? 
Hang on in there, it gets better…

What is your biggest guilty pleasure? 
Romanii au Talent. Although it desperately needs Mihai Petre to return to the judging panel next season.

Name one thing everyone should add to their Bucket List. 
A long, long time ago, I was lucky enough to learn to fly gliders (sailplanes, for our US readers). Soaring gracefully a couple of thousand feet above the ground with only the laws of physics and some warm air to keep you aloft is a truly amazing experience.

What would you do if you were gifted a million dollars, no strings attached? 
Buy a small cabin somewhere in the mountains, and while away the rest of my days trying to work out how to use the remainder, with whatever skills I have, to support the work of the Fundatia Conservation Carpathia. Maybe a new kind of AI-powered camera trap for tracking Lynx…

Share a photo of your favorite pet! 
This is Princess Sashenka. Originally from the streets, but she’s definitely not still Sasha from the Block.

What are your most-used emojis?

Name 3 apps you couldn’t live without.
Duolingo, not that my Romanian is much of a testament. Still, 1407-day streak…
Moovit, the best source of accurate public transport information in a really remarkable number of places around the world.
And at the moment I’m a little bit addicted to Knotwords. It’s kind of Sudoku but with words.

And finally, give us an idea for our upcoming Summer Party. Pick a theme!
How about the theme of ‘contemplation’? Embrace flow, thoughtful reflection, and appreciation of nature and the arts…
Well, it was worth a shot.

Finally an HR Newsletter with cat pics! 
Thank you for the insights, wisdom and fun chat, Tim!

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