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Meet Mick Leach, a Security Operations Manager at Abnormal

February 3, 2023
Mick's Abnormal journey from customer to co-worker has empowered him to help make the world a safe place with technology he's already put to the test.

Mick kicked off his tech career in a slightly unusual place—the US Army. After nine years of military service, he landed a job in IT, which eventually led him to a more security-focused role protecting important data at a large insurance company. Five years in, the worst case scenario occurred—they got hacked.

Mick was determined to figure out what broke down (and how to fix it), so he joined a team that went on to build a new security command center for his company from scratch. Being a part of this process sparked a new passion for cybersecurity for Mick. In fact, other companies took note of what he had accomplished and asked him to come build the same systems for them. Mick loved working to find ways to keep companies safe from cyber attacks—and yet, he felt as though there was a gap in the technology that still needed to be filled, somehow. That’s when Abnormal Security stepped in.

Sanjay Jeyakumar, one of Abnormal’s co-founders, scheduled a meeting with Mick during a quick layover, and he was instantly sold. “Everything was different about it,” Mick said, “I had an amazing tech staff. I had all the right tools, they were doing all the right things, and when I saw what was still slipping through, I realized we had to have it;” so he became one of Abnormal’s first Fortune 500 customers.

The Journey From Customer to Co-worker
Part of what Mick enjoyed the most about cybersecurity was making the world a safer place, but he didn’t feel like the companies he had been working for were committed to that mission. Abnormal, however, felt almost instantly aligned for Mick, so he took the first step in transitioning from an Abnormal Security client to full-time team member and applied for a job. During the interview process, he remembers telling his soon-to-be colleagues, “I’ve been a customer of yours for a year, and I want to be a part of what you’re doing. I want to make the world a better place, I want to protect all of the companies, and this is the perfect place to do exactly that.”

Naturally, Mick was already all-in on Abnormal from a product and mission perspective, but the intellectual honesty the company displayed during his interview process is what got him the most excited to join the team. From the transparency of the product roadmap that Mick was shown before he was even officially hired to the way he sees it play out on his team every day, he notes “It's rare to come to a place where when they say I want to hear your thoughts, they mean it.” He appreciates being in an environment where people don’t respond to feedback from a place of ego or defensiveness, but instead, actually want to identify what’s not working in order to improve.

Remote First = Family First
More importantly, Mick is especially grateful to Abnormal for empowering him to show up for his family in a new way. In past jobs, it was typical for him to spend over two hours commuting to and from the office every day, which didn’t leave much time for him to spend with his kids. “My wife kind of felt like a single parent during the week,” he recalls—until Abnormal’s remote-first culture changed that dynamic entirely. Now, he has time to take the kids to school, make grocery runs, and even coach his kids’ soccer teams. Most recently, he was able to utilize Abnormal’s 12-week parental leave to spend some well-deserved quality time with his newborn. “In 12 kids, I’ve never had 12 weeks off throughout all of them combined!” Mick shares, “I’ve never seen a company that’s truly as committed to their employees as Abnormal Security is to theirs.”

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