Dora Bakos: A Winning Mentality in Sports and Consultancy

Dora Bakos loves a good challenge. Whether it’s her job or the sports she is into, she pushes herself a little harder every time, but never forgets to enjoy the ride. Dora has been with Yardi Romania for seven years and she is now a consultant for clients using the company’s Voyager platform. Her role involves a lot of traveling, but that’s not a problem for someone who makes her way to the top (of a cliff) with just the ocean as a safety net. Get to know Dora in the interview below.

Tell us three things people don’t really know about you.

What can be kept a secret these days, right? The only plant that survives in my flat is a cactus—I am hardly there. As a child, I was convinced that I am someone else – LOL. And I can no longer sleep well quite everywhere. These would be the three things.

Tell us about your story at Yardi Romania. When and how did you start working here?

I had first applied for a business analyst position with Property Shark almost seven years ago. I had a good idea of the type of job I was looking for and I was not afraid to describe it even if that meant not getting the position. As a result, at the initial interview I have already been presented with the role of account manager with the Global Solutions team, a team that was created some time after that interview. I was one of the first eight people that started working on Voyager.

The job fitted me just fine. After a year, I had the opportunity to try my hand at being a consultant. This meant implementing the Voyager system at the client’s site and thus weekly trips to London commenced. I’ve been here ever since, never got bored.

What is your favorite part when it comes to your job?

The situations that can occur. It can be quite challenging to deal with clients sometimes, especially when you have to deliver a not-so-attractive message. Things can get quite tense, but when you manage to get them to come to an agreement by setting the right level of expectations or finding appropriate solutions, it can be incredibly satisfying. In the world of Voyager, I feel this is the job that combines everything in the proportions that I need it.

How did you get into sports?

I don’t consider myself a sportsperson. I like doing sports. I have always been doing them, perhaps not too regularly, not too intense. I do, however, think that it is absolutely necessary to make time for some sports, especially with a sedentary job. This should not feel like an obligation, but a type of entertainment. You should identify the activities you enjoy the most and pursue them. That is how I do it. I see them as a game rather than a health act. They are fun, they recharge me!

What kind of sports are you into?

Thanks to my parents and my brother, skiing is the one I started with as a child so that is the one I have at heart. The only difference is that now I am doing it off-piste, to my mum’s delight. All precautions taken! Swimming is also something I have learned as a child, but I have recently thought myself how to front-crawl as breast-strokes started to feel boring and took too long when it came to completing longer distances. Cycling has also been part of my life since my childhood, but I have just acquired my full-suspension bike to enjoy the downhill part better. Still, going on longer trails continues to be appealing, so I usually alternate between the two. To overcome my fear of heights, I started rock climbing one year ago and it’s working :). Still, the most convenient is jogging, as my running gear is always at hand, no matter where I travel. Now, all this is spiced up with workouts, mountaineering, backcountry skiing, rafting, kayaking, via-ferrata, deep-water soloing, ice-climbing and that’s you have something fun to do every weekend of the year no matter the season, the weather.

You took part in the Cluj Triathlon and finished the race with great results—second place. Tell us about the experience. Did you have a training schedule?

This was my second triathlon—I participated last year in Saint Ana Lake Exterra (950m, 25km, 6km) and came in third, so that gave me confidence. But racing is not all that new to me—I do tend to go to various competitions when I have the opportunity and the time. The Cluj Triathlon seemed a good choice from the ones around our city and I wanted to put myself to the test in a triathlon this year as well.

Training schedule—I can’t say I followed one. As you can tell from what I mentioned above, I do a bit of everything, which doesn’t leave enough time to actually train. But I did try to run weekly—usually 8-10 kilometers. I managed to go cycling after work several times throughout summer— approximately 20-kilometer rides and I live next to the Olympic Pool in Cluj, so dedicating 1.5h to swimming once in a while wasn’t too difficult. Proper preparation probably looks more intense, but my intention was not to win the race, just to enjoy and finish it.

How does it feel to be in such a competition?

It wasn’t easy, but to my surprise, swimming went best (I still find it tricky in lakes, not having the straight line marked beneath you)—I was prepared for two more curves (in the lake) when I noticed the finish line. Then cycling started. I tried to choose gear that was slightly above my comfort zone, just to push myself a bit harder—after all, it was a competition. I knew that if I wanted to keep the same pace all the way through, I needed to enjoy it, I needed something fun. So, I did find something—going through as many puddles as possible and as fast as I could. It worked. I started leaving people behind.

Then came the climbing part. Not my thing when it comes to speed, but I did enjoy it on my way down. That is when I passed my fellow winner. Oddly, running was the bit that got to me, although it’s what I practice most. By that time of the day it got very hot and although I wasn’t even that tired, it felt like torture rather than anything else. It was at half-distance when I saw my fellow winner arriving and quickly continuing towards the finish line. I just stared at her, knowing we are in the same category and continued to drink gallons of water hoping I could avoid the effects of the sun. Who knew we were actually competing against each other for the first spot?!

Is there something that sports taught you that you can apply to your professional activity?

Yes. Sports taught me how to focus, but sports also enhanced my strategic thinking, teamwork, and determination.