VP, UK commercial partner, Microsoft
Tell us something most people won't know about you
I was born in Sydney, Australia, to Italian parents and I live in Ireland - this means most people find my accent is hard to place because I've got a mix of them all,
What has been your highlight of 2018 so far?
Our partner ecosystem delivers amazing customer outcomes and progress each year so I really enjoy the opportunity we have each year to globally celebrate our partners for country and global awards. As such, recognising Kainos as our UK Partner of the year at Inspire along with our UK-based global winners CPS, Content & Code, eBECS, Ensono, Oxford Computer Group and Solidsoft Reply was definitely a highlight.
Who would play you in the film of your life?
Anthony LaPaglia. He is Australian with Italian heritage like me, so he'll understand what it's like growing up with an Italian family and having an accent that isn't clearly his native, inherited or country of residence.
Which tech firm (other than your own!) do you most admire?
Of course I have a love for technology and I have multiple devices around my home - my favourite at the moment has got to be Sonos. Its ability to innovate great sound, beautiful form and ease of use is impressive.
What is your guiltiest pleasure?
Mechanical watches! Over the years I have collected fascinating complicated watches from Switzerland, Germany and even Italy - the level of craftmanship is just incredible.
What is the most irritating tech buzzphrase of 2018?
There are so many phrases that it's hard to keep up with each one but I know we're all guilty of using them and even making some of our own up. I'm sure my team will tell me I use annoying buzzphrases all the time, but let's go for ‘double down'.
What would be your first act if you were made Prime Minister?
I've spent many years working with the public sector, most recently as the EMEA lead for public sector. I have a huge passion for our public sector and I'd say my first act would have to be focused on digital transformation in education. I'd focus on supporting the development of skills through the acceleration of AI integration to truly enable adaptive learning for all.
What is your most treasured possession?
A mechanical watch given to my father by my grandfather 60 years ago and recently it was passed to me. Unfortunately, it doesn't work at the moment and the horologist who manufactured it is long gone. I'm now on a mission to get it back to its original condition.
What do your family think you do all day?
Having worked at Microsoft for more than 20 years in many roles that take me away from home, I'm still not sure my family know what I do - especially my youngest daughter; she probably thinks I get to play on Xbox all day!
Who has been your mentor in business?
First, my wife has been an incredible influence on me personally - I believe who you are in the workplace is shaped by the person you are personally and we've been married for more than 30 years, so she's definitely been a major influence.
At Microsoft, we truly value people being authentic and having a growth mindset so from a professional perspective, it's a man I very much respect called Tom - he's been my career coach for 15 years and he's an excellent mentor, knowing the right questions to ask me to help me think and approach challenges/opportunities differently while offering me a great sounding board.
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