Employee Spotlight: Amir ZonoziFebruary 19, 2016
I like to think of Amir as a man full of quotes. One of his famous lines, which often concludes our daily scrums, is: “Let’s kick a** today.” There’s not a doubt in my mind that our team is able to live up to those words because of his fearless leadership. A visionary and a man full of personality, Amir can easily brighten your day and make you walk away from a conversation delighted by his passion to make a difference in the world.
1. Before working at Zoomph, what was the most unusual or interesting job you’ve ever had?
I used to work as a medical technician in the in-patient behavioral health unit at a major D.C. hospital, where I’d be assigned to work with individuals who displayed problematic behavior. I have been swung at, threatened, yelled at, hugged, and thanked through my experiences there. It taught me how precious health is, and also how to connect with people who have different communication styles. Social media to me is all about the connection made with individuals; I’ve learned that it’s more psychology than it will ever be technology.
2. Three words to describe Zoomph (platform or culture):
Disruptive. Rebellious. Relentless.
3. Your best and worst social media habits?
It happened, I got a puppy and started becoming that person on Facebook. Just kidding, I am usually very mindful of my audience and the messages that I send on each network. I am painfully social and am always experimenting with my personal brand to see what elements I can apply to the brands I work with.
As for my worst habits — well, I can be a bit too focused on engaging my audiences online, to the point where offline audiences might not be as appreciative. However, I’m very lucky to have an amazing girlfriend and friends who understand my social inclinations and career.
— Amir Zonozi (@Zonozi) January 30, 2016
4. What would people never guess that you do in your role?
There’s nothing that I won’t do. I learned that from Ali, our CEO of Zoomph and CEO of MetroStar Systems. Ali’s always quick to roll up his sleeves for any necessary job, without hesitation. Whether he’s needed to help clean after a team meeting or to fix a broken projector, he’s on it.
Likewise, I won’t hesitate to take messages for employees, order food for the team, clean up around the office — it’s on my list to do whatever our team needs and whatever moves us closer to success because that’s what teammates do.
5. If you were to write a self-help book, what would the topic be?
“Comfort is the Enemy of Greatness”
6. What is your personal philosophy?
Continuously challenge and improve oneself, and make the most of every moment.
7. What would you like to be famous for?
Hopefully for inspiring others to do better and not accept things for how they are, but for how they should be.
8. What emoji describes you best?
Can’t stop, won’t stop!
9. What is your preferred social media channel and why?
Twitter. Nothing is more exhilarating than seeing a conversation take the world at such lightning speed. I love the energy it generates.
10. What is the most important thing you’ve learned in the last five years?
Nothing is impossible with hard work and dedication.
11. Top 3 things left on your bucket list?
- Playing Chess with Kanye West
- Thumb war with Mark Zuckerberg
- Play ‘Never Have I Ever’ with Mike Tyson
12. You’re happiest when…
I’m playing with new technology. I love being on the cutting edge of what life has to offer – I’m a shameless early adopter.
13. What is your most treasured possession?
Right now? I’d have to say my Google Glass. Considering their social handles just went offline, it’s a relic of wearable technology that has so much emotion attached to it. My last pair broke, so the pair that I have now is sitting in a box, untouched.
14. Top 3 Highlights of your life:
My highlights were my toughest moments in life–those moments that I’ll never forget and pushed me to succeed:
- My acceptance into Georgetown’s CCT graduate school program. No one thought I would get in (including myself), but Georgetown gave me a chance because of my online experience and passion. I had one semester to prove myself, and I received straight A’s. This was a golden opportunity to initiate my career in social media, and I didn’t take it lightly.
- My graduation from Georgetown. I was sleep-deprived from working and studying full time. It was one of the hardest times of my life, but it was so rewarding to accomplish this goal.
- Zoomph. Before it was its own company, Zoomph was just a side project that I helped with while working part time for MetroStar Systems. Back then, our team was small: it was just me, our current CTO Lee Kohn, our creative director Nicolas Cronin, and a couple other people. As Zoomph grew bigger and bigger, it was mesmerizing to see our team’s ideas come to life. What kept us all going was our desire not to let each other down. Then, once people began creating accounts in Zoomph…and we saw them benefit from our work…it was truly magical. Today, I still feel that it is such a honor to be entrusted by so many people. Our team works so hard to satisfy our clients, and this journey has provided me with experiences that I’ll never forgotten.
15. What is your proudest moment at Zoomph?
Such a tough question. I’ve had so many proud moments. Just seeing what Zoomph was and what it is today is so exciting. The other day, I was just excited to watch the team eat lunch at our new Zoomph bar. I had to take a photo –- it’s a testament to our hard work.
However, if I had to pick one proud moment, I’d have to say working with the Washington Wizards and Capitals. I grew up watching these teams, and used to tell people that I’d one day play for the Bullets (Wizards). When our team got to walk on the court and play on their practice court, then meet the players…it was just a special moment when I realized that we can do anything.
16. What has been the greatest innovation/team achievement that you’ve witnessed while at Zoomph?
We’re always delivering on a challenge, which is my favorite achievement: our ability to take on any challenge. I can’t tell you how many products we’ve displaced because we were able to create something that our customers were previously told wasn’t possible. That is where we thrive as a team. We love accepting challenges and venturing into unknown territory.