Anthony Kurda joined the Castor team in August 2019. As the first Account Executive working out of our Hoboken office in the United States, he’s faced unique challenges and opportunities in growing our American sales base. We sat down with him to find out what his work involves, how he coordinates with our Amsterdam-based team, and what he loves most about being a ‘Castorian.’
What is your role at Castor?
At Castor, we’re all about faster, smarter, medical research. My role is to build relationships with existing and potential clients. With our next investment round on the horizon, we’re pushing for massive customer growth across the U.S.A. So far, I’ve been the only Account Executive working out our U.S. location — but that’s about to change!
My main job is selling our cloud-based SaaS products to biotech, pharma and medical device organizations through the full sales cycle — from finding customers, to presenting products to them, to closing the deal.
What does a typical day look like?
There are no typical days! Castor is the epitome of working at a startup so my job has many moving parts. Mostly, I spend my time speaking with customers, doing web-based demos with them, and then speaking with their legal, procurement, IT, and other research teams. There are typically many people involved in our clients’ decision-making process!
When I’m not speaking to inbound customers, I am researching possible clients who are developing new medical devices or conducting other medical research so that I can pitch our healthtech products to them.
To get a better idea of what a week might look like as an Account Executive, here’s a peek at my calendar:
As you can see, there is a weekly sales team meeting, which I join remotely. I also participate in the Marketing and Sales meetings that keep everyone on the same page. We also have Friday stand-ups which all international Castorians join through a Zoom video chat. This job definitely requires a roll-up-your-sleeves attitude!
How do you track down leads?
Actually, a lot of leads come to me. Much of our business comes from inbound leads. Potential customers seek us out for quotes and demos because they have 1, 2, or even 15+ clinical studies coming up.
Of course, there’s also many potential clients who have never heard of Castor. So while I’m dealing with inbound leads, I’m also reaching out to companies to generate awareness of Castor EDC and how we can impact their medical research. No B2B business grew without talking to potential customers on the phone — Castor is no different. So yes, there is some cold-calling involved.
You are working out of New Jersey in the USA, but Castor’s head office is in Amsterdam. How does that work?
The initial Castor onboarding process made a big difference. When I started, I was introduced to everyone so they’re not just a name on a company roster. Over time, I’ve gotten to meet most of my European colleagues at company retreats. And when colleagues from Europe come to visit our American office for meetings or training, we make sure to have team dinners together.
Video chats are crucial to our day-to-work. We use Zoom, which works really well. We also have a company-wide Slack channel, with a specific handle for our sales folks. It’s been very useful to troubleshoot issues together and get instant feedback.
Even though I’m currently the only US Account Executive in the Hoboken office, I’ve never felt alone! Even now, I still find myself in situations where I don’t know the answer to something but everyone helps each other and the company supports further industry-related education. And, of course, I’m excited for a new Account Executive to be hired and come join me!
What are your keys to success?
🗓Planning. Every day has to be planned out. If I come to the office without a plan of how I’ll tackle my day, then nothing gets done.
👍A desire to make a difference. I always provide value to customers and do anything I can to make their jobs easier.
🔨A can-do attitude. This is a hands-on, fast-paced startup culture so a willingness to dive in is important.
What’s the most fulfilling part of your job?
The best part for me is working on a deal or project with a customer and then later seeing Castor referenced in a research paper. That’s how I see what a difference we’re making in medical research. I also love seeing a product or drug come to market that was developed with the help of Castor EDC. When you see stuff like that, you realize how the work you do has a real-life impact on patient lives, and that’s powerful. It makes me feel like my work matters.
Also, working at Castor in the US office is a unique opportunity because this sales work will have a foundational impact on how the business grows. Although there are processes in place, our executive management also encourages us to push boundaries and innovate. So as the US office grows, the sales team will be able to have an impact on what the future of Castor will look like. For me, that’s very exciting!
Tell us about your office location.
The Hoboken office is in a fantastic location. We’re 6 minutes walking distance from Hoboken Terminal so commuting is a snap. Live in the city? Take the Path or Ferry to work. Live in New Jersey? Take an NJ Transit bus or train and you’ll practically be in the office.
There is also a park right outside of the Hoboken Castor office where I go for walks during lunch. It is complete with a killer view of lower Manhattan. And, like the rest of the Castorians, I work from the comfort of home one day a week.
Ok, time for one more question. Where’s your favourite place to go for lunch?
Quality Greens on Washington Street! It’s a great place for a fresh salad. However, I love exploring other restaurants and cozy coffee shops in Hoboken. There is an endless array of delicious restaurants nearby. And yes, lunch can be expensed!