Employee Highlight: Meet TechSmithie Matt Pierce

To continue the Employee Highlight series, I had the pleasure of interviewing our Customer Engagement Manager, Matt Pierce. And we even put together a video interview for you! (Note: content in video is slightly different than text below.)

Can’t see the video? Watch it on YouTube.

An Interview with Matt Pierce

Who are you, and what do you do?
I’m Matt Pierce. I am the Customer Engagement Manager. I manage our Training and Documentation team, oversee Technical Support, and host the Forge. I try to be a good visual communicator and an advocate of using visuals to communicate better. When I’m not doing those things I am a husband and a dad to four awesome kids.

What’s your favorite thing about your job?
I work in sort of a fantasy land. I come to work and I have fun every day. We work hard, we play hard… we push each other to do great things. Not only that, but I get to try things that I really never thought I would do. How many people go to work, create their own web show, and then get to talk to amazing guests and learn at their feet? Then on top of that, I get to work with brilliant (that’s right, I’m pulling out the big word guns) individuals. The individuals I work with have a huge capacity and are always coming up with great ideas, and then figure out how to make them happen.

What are your long term goals with The Forge? Where do you see it going in the future?
The Forge really started out of professional development time, so it’s sort of always been a side project that moved into having a fixed rotation in the work that I do. I think my long-term plan is to continue to grow the viewership so that we can keep spreading the message about visual communication and how screencasting and screenshots (not to mention tools like Ask3 and Coach’s Eye) can enhance most individuals’ ability to communicate. I’d love to see us continue to speak with interesting individuals. I think there are a lot of great stories to tell, and I’d like to see us tell more of them. I also want to see the Forge provide more information about tools that might help the audience be more successful. For instance, cameras, microphones, different software, and really other tools all have a place in a communicator’s tool box — but which ones are really good to use? Which ones help meet some need or goal? I think there’s room for us to continue to hone the content and get into a more digestible state for people on the go. Really, we’ve got lots to do.

If you could have any guest on the show, who would it be?
I have been lucky enough to have some great guests, especially recently, like Dan Roam and Dave Gray. If you’d told me a year ago that I would be chatting with these guys, I would’ve definitely been skeptical.

If I get to be audacious and talk with anyone I would pick more than one. Sal Khan could be super interesting. He’s a gentleman who is lighting a bit of a fire under education and educators, and what he’s doing isn’t necessarily that difficult to recreate – but it’s visual and the way it keeps moving forward seems revolutionary.

I’d also love to chat with Joss Whedon, who wrote and directed Avengers, Dr. Horrible, and a slew of other movies and TV shows. Why him? He’s written so many amazing things and he knows how to visually tell a story.

What tools or software do you use most in your day to day operations?
I spend a lot of my day in email (Outlook on Mac) and in FireFox or Chrome. I use Snagit on Mac just about every day, and I do something with Camtasia for Mac at least one or two times a week. Other software that keep popping up include Evernote. I have been playing with Adobe Premiere. I also have been testing out a GoPro Hero 3 Black edition camera that can shoot 60 and even 120 frames per second (FPS) so you get some sweet slow motion.

And above all, I use my notebook, white pieces of paper, and sticky notes daily to draw things out and better understand them visually.