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Sarah Lock, Startup Account Manager at AWS

From dreaming of becoming a pediatrician to working at one of the world's largest tech companies, Sarah Lock seems to have found a place where she is constantly learning and could not be happier.

Sarah and the team at AWS are helping bring to life Fast Forward Christchurch, a virtual open house with the regions fastest growing companies for anyone curious.

We grabbed the opportunity to learn more about her career journey leading into working at AWS, her take on why now is such an exciting time to be working in the sector, as well as a deeper look at some of the work Sarah and the team do to support the startup community in Aotearoa. Thanks for sharing your story, Sarah. 

How would you explain to a five-year-old what you do?

I help people use the technology that finds cool toys on Amazon, which means Alexa can answer your strange questions and allows the world to watch Netflix to build companies from New Zealand that can make a global impact.

“I have learnt more about cows, grapes and fungus than I ever thought I would working in "IT".”

And for the adults, what does that translate to in terms of your day-to-day?

I work with growing startups to ensure they are getting the best from cloud technology. No day is the same and I have learnt more about cows, grapes and fungus than I ever thought I would working in "IT".

What did you dream of doing when you were younger and how did you end up at AWS?

I wanted to be a pediatrician, but ended up in IT recruitment. A series of events led to the opportunity to join AWS. I was pretty sure it was not the right time or best idea, but knew if I didn’t take the chance I would regret it.

After managing the recruitment for our growing NZ business I moved to the startups team. Ending up at AWS has been the best "bad" decision I have ever made!

What gets you excited about the startup and tech ecosystem in Aotearoa and why should more people be considering it as a career path?

How can you not be excited! There is so much happening in New Zealand. You can make an impact and have a good size customer base to work with and experiment with, as well as links to a global economy if that is where you want to go.

“Regardless of the business outcome you will learn and grow in ways that are not possible unless you are in a startup.”

Lastly, why should our brightest talent be looking towards our tech and startup ecosystem?

You're getting on the lift at the ground floor and the sky is the limit. Regardless of the business outcome you will learn and grow in ways that are not possible unless you are in a startup.

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