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APRIL 2021: PEOPLE OF HICO – NICOLAI WOLF, SENIOR BI CONSULTANT

Publication date: 27 April 2021

This March will mark 4 years since Nicolai Wolf joined the HICO family as a Business Intelligence Consultant. Working in an ever-changing field such as BI, there is always something exciting going on, which makes Nico’s job all the more interesting. So, we thought we’d hear it straight from the source. Spoiler alert: Nico is also a cellist, a snowboarder, and an Italian language learner! Let’s get into it!

To get started, we asked Nicolai what he has liked the most during his 4 years at HICO.

The constant excitement of the job! It is hard to pick just one favorite thing to do but it is safe to say it never gets boring. As a Senior BI Consultant, my work involves working with diverse customers, colleagues, and teams on different projects. It never gets boring!

Speaking of which, does this diversity also apply to the challenges you encounter?

For sure! Even with a large track record of successfully completed projects, there is always something new! Furthermore, every client has different expectations and standards, and we haven’t even talked about the quality of data and the differences that come with that.

And then there is the whole part regarding the expectation management. It is our job to educate and guide the customer as much as possible. This can easily take its toll on the timing of a project so an additional challenge for me as a project leader is to always stay on track, on time, and have an overview of what needs to be done (and by who) at which moment.

Sounds like you have your work cut out for you every single day! What have been some of the biggest changes in your day-to-day since the start of the pandemic and also remote work? How did you adapt to that?

I would say all of our customers and the BI industry especially adapted very fast. As for me, every day until March of last year, I did my work on site and now I spend around 10 hours a day on Zoom. All things considered, I don’t think there have been many “major” changes. We simply continued to do our jobs and it turned out pretty well.

Of course, we all miss the opportunity of having on-site workshops, but compared to other industries, we are privileged to be able to work like this without missing out on a lot.

We’re glad to hear that, Nico! While we’re on the topic of major changes, do you expect to see any major “shift” in the BI industry in the next 5-10 years?

Well… there will be more data. Increasingly more data. I think we can see this slowly starting to take shape even now. Many industries and companies are changing their view on the “benefits” of actionable data and insights.

In the future, instead of just gathering, and looking at the data, there will be unfathomably more analysis happening to create this new age of organizations that are truly “fueled” by their data and predictive trends. That’s where the whole “analytics” thought gets relevant.

Sounds exciting! Now onto you as a person… Can you try to describe yourself in 3 words?

That is difficult! 🙂 But I would say calm, analytics-driven, and somehow a bit sarcastic.

What is one thing about you that people would be surprised to know?

I am a musician. I started playing the cello when I was five!

Wow, that sounds amazing! Have you ever thought about a career in music?

When I was younger… I think it is good to stick to hobbies though, and not make them your job. That way, you might lose the joy of doing it.

Name someone in your industry whose content you really enjoy following.

I cannot think of anyone specific, but I really enjoy lots of very interesting BI podcasts as well as TED Talks. 

Nice! Who is your biggest inspiration in life?

Phew, a difficult question for a Thursday afternoon. But I would say my parents and my grandparents.

Name one thing you really could not live without.

Well, according to the last question: family. But I guess this is almost a boring answer, so in addition, I’d say music.

Name one thing you really could live without.

Television.

Favorite movie.

City of God.

Favorite book.

Die Schachnovelle, by Stefan Zweig.

What is your newest hobby?

Learning Italian. It’s a work in progress.

What are you looking forward to the most in 2021?

Traveling. 

Name 3 things you’re going to do right after this call.

  1. Make myself a cup of coffee
  2. Prepare my next call
  3. And finish a workshop protocol 

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