A/V Spotlight: YT Liang, Product Manager at ATEN
“My name is YT Liang and I am currently a hybrid role of Product Manager and Sales Engineer, focusing on delivering beneficial products to the market and helping the customers to overcome their challenges. Before this, I was an engineer lead in the R&D department working on Control System and Enterprise IP-based solutions. I love helping and working with different people as well as playing basketball, watching movies, and learning new technology!” – YT Liang
Q: What is something in life that you are passionate about?
A: Helping people! I enjoy talking to different stakeholders, understanding their challenges and accomplishing the goals together. I like to talk to our customers, listen to their needs, ask them questions, come up with the solution proposal, and make sure we can really help them to overcome their pain points. I like to discuss with our team members from different departments including: Sales, Marketing, Engineers, and Operations, to identify our goals and initiatives, accomplish the tasks with impact and results, and move to the next. It feels so good to help people and get the right things done.
Q: What is something unique about the audio visual industry that not many people know?
A: I want to say the Control System solution. Most people would understand the audiovisual industry makes the ‘audio’ and ‘visual’ happen but not many people know we also do control systems, which brings the most convenient and intuitive way to control the environment and save the hassle of using so many different kinds of remote controllers.
Q: When did you first learn of the A/V industry and how did you first get involved?
A: I guess the very first (unofficial) touch of the A/V industry was when I was a kid, my father got me a Nintendo Famicom video game console and my father was teaching me to connect the A/V connectors to the TV. But really the very first (official) engagement I started in the A/V industry was when I was an engineer in the R&D department and working on the web GUI of our video matrix – innovating and thinking the easiest way for the system integrator to configure a video wall. As a team of engineers, Product Manager, and User Experience, we came up with the web GUI, which you can finish configuring a 4×3 video wall in 20 seconds! We even won a Red Dot Award for this!
Q: What is the best advice you have ever received?
A: Always push yourself to the next level. This came from my previous manager, Jerry Chiu, who always challenged me to think about and reach to the next level and I really appreciated all his guidance and mentoring. His advice helped me to continuously improve and push myself on the knowledge and growth of an individual as well as a team.
Q: What would you recommend as the best strategy for someone who wants to follow the same career path as you?
A: I would recommend understanding the certification in the industry, identifying the ones you and even your customers need the most, and just go for it. It’s more than just a certification. It’s also the process that matters. During the study of getting certifications, we are learning knowledge in a systematic way and also helps us to reflect back on our tasks at work. I am also seeing certifications on IT (network, security, etc.) which are beneficial for the Pro AV industry.
Q: How would you describe the relationship between A/V and IT?
A: Brothers and sisters. A/V and IT have some similarities (for example, both are on network now) and differences (for example, A/V people care about HDCP and EDID but probably not for the IT people). And the most important thing is to work together and maximize the performance and experience. Both A/V and IT experts have important and unique skillsets and it’s when we contribute what we are good at that makes the project / installation the best way it can perform.
Q: What do you see as the future of A/V?
A: I think there will be a couple of topics for the industry and people to work on and keep improving. With things moving to the network, security is one (for example, the microphone in the meeting room captures all the conversations). Interoperability is always in the discussion – we are seeing some improvement (more standards) and it can help to reduce the overhead of the system integrator when putting the products together as well as troubleshooting. The last one will be 8K – that means better user experience and of course new technology and infrastructure that we can work on together.
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