I am a commercial technology leader with a track record of achieving growth in infrastructure software and services. I have a long-held interest in organisational behaviour and the leadership of change. I love to get things done.
Detailed background, if you're curious
The majority of my career in IT has centred on the growth of complex technology and services. I'm naturally inclined to seek the systemic root cause of the issues at hand, then effect changes which produce a sustained benefit.
I have lived and worked in Canberra, Melbourne, Sydney and London. My family have enjoyed moving around a lot with my career - my three kids were each born in different cities - but we have finally settled down in the UK.
I started working in 1993. My first career was in the software development of workflow and database systems. I first worked as a consultant analyst programmer for workflow systems. I worked in Cold Fusion and 4th Dimension. In 1997, I switched sides to selling software development services on behalf of a Lotus Notes shop, and then next ecommerce websites for a marketing firm. That was the first seven years of my career.
I was a good developer, but I knew my long-term career was in leadership rather than being hands-on.
In 2000 I joined IBM's infrastructure services division to sell services to major clients in public sector and finance. I sold datacentre relocation services, large Cisco network design and services, Exchange 2000 migration, and sub-1500 seat outsourcing. I had a broad remit. I sold IBM’s services to relocate the largest compute infrastructure in the southern hemisphere, run by Centrelink, from its Sydney datacentre to Canberra.
Next I worked at Apple, selling their unix servers and storage to the enterprise. That product division has been closed now, and I left Apple as it became today's consumer company. I successfully campaigned using the argument of cyberdiversity to create survivability against vectors which target the Microsoft operating system.
I also won a landmark deal in 2003, the first complex systems deal in the world for Apple, owning the integration between a third-party digital media asset management system, HP tape silo, Veritas backup, and Apple servers and storage. The solution was used to support the video analysis of athletes in the 2004 Olympics.
In 2006 I joined Cisco services, and focused on complex sales to their top-tier clients, in four cities over seven years, including London. I was involved with complex commercial and technical contracts, such as operational and commercial design of the 24x7 maintenance regime for BP’s global network across refineries, pipelines, carpeted offices, petrol stations and oil platforms. I also worked with Defence on both their civilian and military infrastructure.
I joined the cloud management startup Rightscale in 2012, so I could learn about AWS and the immense cloud infrastructure space that had emerged over the prior few years. I won a major deal with Coles, a large grocery chain in Australia. They used CloudStack on-premises combined with AWS in the cloud, integrated with both ServiceNow and Citrix CloudPortal Services Manager, with RightScale being the glue.
In 2014 my family settled in the countryside outside London so I could join Rackspace where, as part of the UK executive, I ran presales including solution architecture, consulting and professional services. For a while I also led 24x7 operational delivery and customer success for the top-30 customers in Europe.
At Rackspace I managed a staff of 165, of which 65 were in European technical pre-sales, data centre migration services, inbound product management, and cloud consulting including digital transformation, and 100 staff across service management and Level 1-4 technical support. This meant I had oversight and leadership of complicated, risky and mission-critical data centre relocations for Metro Bank, Vodafone M-Pesa, Domino's and others. I also enjoyed serving as a media spokesperson and commentator on cloud technology.
In June 2016 I started with SoftwareONE UK Ltd as the Chief Commercial Officer. I was accountable for growth in the UK business and held P&L responsibility. For two years I oversaw a staff of ~90 including sales, technical pre-sales, customer experience, marketing, commercial, and vendor management. I delivered improvements to KPIs such as proportion of new logo revenue, average deal size, social selling index, pipeline vitality, and market share in enterprise. The business grew revenue by more than 20% YoY and we increased profitability even more so.
Personal and geeky
Some interesting dimensions that Linkedin won’t tell you.
I started programming in BASIC when I was 11 years old.
I am a retired MMO gamer and often ended up in guild or raid leadership. You actually learn a lot about virtual-team leadership from gaming (it’s been studied). I played WoW and SWTOR.
I love Star Wars, and have bought some Lego for myself. I'd probably buy more if I had a display cabinet.
I follow the Exeter Chiefs in rugby union because my family's ancestry is in Devon.
To keep fit, I'm a powerlifter with a power rack in my gym. I can squat and deadlift decent weights, but my bench is weak. I enjoy the stillness of mind which comes about when there's 140Kg on your back.
I was a professional musician for a while, with a recording label and played gigs around Australia.
I’m still a geek at heart, with a keen interest in enterprise technology.
My wife and I have three wonderful children – my 16 year old girl will be an author and she is already a prolific writer, my 13 year old boy wanted to be a game designer but now is thinking of finance, my six-year old boy debates enough that he might become a lawyer. My wife Laura is a psychologist.
The blog banner image is by Samuel Ferrara from Unsplash.