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5 Characteristics of a Successful Data Consultant

Data architects and engineers are the skilled experts behind complex data management. On the KSM Consulting team, they also play a significant role in solving client problems by building and executing algorithms that are the foundation of technical solutions.  

What makes a great data architect or engineer? There’s no question that top-notch technical skills are important, but according to KSMC Data Engineering team lead Bernardo Unzueta, that’s just 50% of what makes a great data consultant.  

Successful data professionals also embody key soft skills to help them thrive in a fast-paced consulting environment.  

 1. Flexible Problem Solving 

Solving problems isn’t a straight line. It can be messy, frustrating—and yet also very rewarding if you go into it with a mindset geared toward flexibility. Data consultants take on complex problems and projects that can shift on a moment’s notice. Sometimes the client needs change. Sometimes the internal team comes up with a new approach. Being able to quickly adjust to these new demands plays a role in individual, team, and project success. 

 2. Collaborative Communication 

Teamwork makes the data work. It also leads to the best innovation. While being able to dive in and work independently is important, collaboration drives the problem-solving process. The best data professionals can work with all key players (whether data, development, IT, or project management) and run with an idea. They’re also able to effectively communicate, especially when it comes to translating complex concepts and tech terminology to clients or internal team members outside of data. At the end of the day, it’s all about empathizing with others and working together to come up with the best solutions to complicated client problems.  

 3. Career-Focused  

What do you want your career to look like? Having a vision of how you want to grow in your profession as well as how you can provide value to the team and organization is important. Data is diverse, with many opportunities to grow into skill sets that inspire you. Whether you want to keep your focus in the heart of the numbers and tech or branch out to develop more consulting skills, there’s a place for you! 

At KSMC, we seek team members who are not only passionate about tech but the future of KSMC and our work. We’re solving innovative problems and need engaged people willing to invest in both their careers and our clients. That’s why we guide each member of our data team in setting learning goals to grow into the future roles they see for themselves.  

 4. People-Driven 

KSMC’s CEO, Mark Caswell, likes to say that there’s no such thing as data problems. There are only people problems. Data is a people-driven profession whether it means coming up with tools clients can effectively use or analyzing data to develop solutions to some incredibly people-centered problems. Data is behind innovation for many of society’s complicated problems. Having empathy and a passion for meaningful work that can impact lives will only help you in your career. 

 5. Curious Learner 

Being a life-long learner is perhaps one of the most important skills for a carer in data. Technology moves pretty fast. Our team is always jumping into new things, learning new technologies and new methodologies.  

Great data architects and engineers are curious about the problems they’re solving, trends in the data profession, and the future of data architecture. They’re self-starters who enjoy learning on their own and embrace opportunities to take classes, learn skills from other team members, and practice those new skill sets.  

At KSMC, our data team frequently uses our hands-on learning environment to tackle new technologies, like learning Python, a language becoming more and more significant to the future of data tech. They also participate in a newly launched mentorship program so team members can turn to each other for guidance. “This is for their personal growth while also helping the team and our organization,” Bernardo Unzueta explains. “They need to invest their time and we are here to support.”

 

Working in data is more than just numbers and information. If you’re ready to rise to the challenge and grow as a data professional on our team, view our current open positions.