6 Partner Stories of Life Outside the Comfort Zone - - AppExchange
Skip to NavigationSkip to Main Content

6 Partner Stories of Life Outside the Comfort Zone

Think about the last time you took a risk in your professional life. Perhaps you switched jobs to a new industry, or made a brand new career move. By living outside your comfort zone, and shifting your mindset, you were probably able to move your career to a new and higher place.

To understand what it takes to embrace working outside your comfort zone, Andrew Gothelf spoke with executives from six AppExchange partners about the risks they’ve taken, both professionally and personally. We found that these experts don’t just live outside their comfort zones at work — they take risks in their personal lives too. Read on to hear their stories, and check out The Exchange for even more inspiration.

Bob Dunfee, Vice President of Product Marketing, Smart Communications

“Back in 2000, I bought a Dodge Viper and joined the North Texas Region Viper Club. I met and built relationships with the members, sure, but was out of my comfort zone because I’d never worked on my cars the way they had. Over time, however, they asked me to become president of the club, and I even got into racing the car, which I had never done before.”

Get SmartCOMM>>

Steve Wood, Chief Product Officer, Dell Boomi

 “I’m a bit introverted, but I did play in a band when I was younger. It’s the sort of experience that’s kind of cool, but actually, when you’re doing it, it is frightening to get on stage and perform. I love music, it’s a huge part of my life. But playing publicly in a band was pretty frightening.”

Get Dell Boomi Integration >>

Will Spendlove, Vice President of Product Marketing, Conga

 “I am a massive believer in new life experiences, so I travel the globe. My top goal in life is to see different things and different people. Just this year alone, I went to Egypt and Poland. Having new experiences pushes me outside of my regular comfort zone, and provides me a fulfilled life.”

Get Conga Composer >>

Jeffrey Reekers, Vice President of Marketing, Aircall

 “In my 20s, I got into endurance sports with a goal to do an Ironman. I decided to sign up for one at the last minute. It was 100 degrees, and a good lesson that if you cut through the fat you can still get it done. On the big day, I had the cheapest bike and no idea what I was doing. It was worth doing though, and I’ve done a couple more since.”

Get Aircall >>

Arturo Zacarias, Director of Product Management, VerticalResponse

“As my kids have grown, I’ve started coaching them on different things. I was probably naive on what it takes to teach robotics to kids, but I decided to coach robotics to a team of eight-to-10-year-old kids. It took me out of my comfort zone, but it’s been a very rewarding experience, and has gotten me closer to my daughter and her friends.”

Get VerticalResponse >>

Christine Rimer, Vice President, Voice of the Customer, SurveyMonkey

“A few years ago, I went to a surf camp as a ‘bucket list’ item with no intention of surfing again in the icy, shark-ridden waters of Northern California. Yet eight years later, I paddle out regularly at dawn with a group of guys. I get pummeled, but every once in a blue moon I catch a great wave. Surfing really is my courage-building activity.”

Get SurveyMonkey >>


These are some of the things these partners have done outside of work, and outside their normal daily lives. What are some of your stories? Share on Twitter with @appexchange, and read The Exchange for even more ideas.

Amanda Nelson is Director of Community Marketing for AppExchange, Salesforce.
Most Recent Articles