Who are you, and what do you do?
My name is Marc Dousset. I co-own AXIOM IT Solutions, a custom software solution company located in Missoula, Montana.
What has been one insight or lesson that has been most helpful in your career?
Speak up when you think you have something to contribute, and listen when you don’t.
What has been your favorite mistake? A mistake that in retrospect led to a great lesson and progress.
The most acute challenge I find in our industry is to bring forth knowledge/ experience acquired, while still keeping aware of advances in technology that challenges these learnings. It’s challenging but it’s also what keeps it fresh and innovative. I am fortunate to be surrounded by experts in the field that are constantly sharing their findings.
Project forward ten years. How will your industry or field be fundamentally different then? What opportunities do you see?
If I only knew! There are certainly advances in AI that are likely to rock our world! Blockchain has been interesting to watch as well.
What are some bad recommendations you hear in your profession or area of expertise?
It can be tempting to see the work we do as mechanical and with all the modern communication tools, assume that it can be performed by others anywhere in the world, regardless of differences in culture, time zone/ availability, etc. Most projects I have seen outsourced in such manner have not been successful projects and often neglect the creative and human aspect of what we do and how we communicate.
In the last two years, what have you become better at saying no to?
Not so much saying “no”, but recognizing early when we have a potential mismatch between what a client (prospective or current) is requesting vs what we can offer, and helping that client reframe their expectation or guide them towards another approach.
What is the one book you recommend most often and why?
In the non-fiction realm, I love reading and learning, and there are so many good opportunities for both out there. As such, it is difficult to pin it down to a single one. Any recommendations would usually be based on the context of a conversation. I can tell you that at the moment, I am reading Traction by Gino Wickman.
I do like historical fiction books and really enjoy Ken Follett’s books in that genre. His century trilogy is a great read!
What advice would you give a smart and ambitious recent college graduate? What advice should they ignore?
I heard a quote recently from musician Mark Knopfler: “Do what you must do and not what you can do”, which is another way of saying find your passion. When you are young, you think you have all the time in the world, but later you realize it’s not so, so start early!
Ignore advice that does not resonate with you. What’s good for one person is not necessarily good for another. It goes back to doing what you must do, not what you can do.