Managing director, UK Partner & Commercial Sales, Cisco International
What was the worst job you have ever had?
When I was 15, and for one morning only, I was a lift operator at Debenhams in Harrogate, welcoming shoppers and perfecting the under-appreciated skills of button pressing and small talk to drown out the incessant wail of Pop Muzik by M on perpetual loop. Life always has its ups and downs.
Which actor would you pick to play you in a movie of your life?
Hugo Speer - we were at primary school together and our lives have obviously taken very similar paths since then; fame, fortune, international adulation... Ah. Well at least he speaks like me and knows the intense pleasure in a proper pint of bitter.
What do you do as your party trick?
It may sound a little lame, but I really don't have one.
What is your favourite chocolate bar?
It has to be the Curly Wurly - claggy, chewy, chocolate nonsense that always takes me back to schooldays.
What has been the highlight of your career to date?
Working with my current team; wonderfully talented people doing outstanding work, achieving great things, and doing it all with real heart and passion.
Has 2014 been a good, bad or ugly year?
It has been a tremendously good year. We moved to a little village in the country, family all happy and healthy, and it's been another fabulous year for my team at work. Now, if only Leeds United could get their act together...
How would you explain the IT channel to a stranger without boring them to death?
The IT channel is a bit like The Gadget Show, although some might argue we're a bit less glamorous. Just as they make sense of the cool technology that surrounds consumers, the IT channel does the same for businesses and translates their needs into solutions.
Aside from the channel, my dream career would be... an archaeologist as I love history, I'm innately nosey and I'm fascinated by the mystery and the limitless possibilities of a dig into the past. I'm not too keen on the paperwork though.
What major issues will the channel face in 2015?
Cash flow challenges from the continued shift to cloud and outcome/SLA-based procurement; the never-ending battle to find, foster and retain talent; and the need to build, buy or partner to increase application and vertical customer relevance. Partnerships will be critical to success in FY15; choosing correctly will remain a vital leadership skill required for the channel to prosper.
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