Career so far I was born and educated in Poland and studied law at the University of Warsaw. My first job in the UK was as marketing manager for a large London-based logistics company. While working there I also studied for my MBA at Oxford. I have been a director with European Electronique since 1996 and chief executive for the past seven years.
If you could be anyone else for a week, who would you be and what would you do? Julius Caesar or Alexander the Great. Conquering the world appeals to me.
Cloud - friend or foe? In this time of austerity it is essential that IT solutions are cost effective, simple and flexible enough to move quickly with the organisation's needs. Cloud services enable you to avoid investment in quickly evolving technologies and also enables you to consider how some services and new equipment can be secured through the right balance of capital and revenue funding.
As such, European Electronique has invested a considerable amount of time and money in the research and development of cloud services including working closely with Microsoft. At West London Free School, European Electronique was the first company to implement a fully integrated cloud-based solution into education, utilising Microsoft's Office365 platform.
While there are a significant number of benefits in the use of cloud services, there are also a number of concerns and risks which need to be carefully considered before taking the plunge.
Using cloud services means outsourcing at least part of your organisation's IT services, so there is a risk that you are, in part, dependent on a third-party provider. It is also important that you carefully consider the cost of resilient bandwidth and take the appropriate measures to keep this under control. We believe that the pros far outweigh the cons, and that cloud computing is here to stay.
Has 2011 been as bad as everyone said it would be? For some, yes, but not for everyone. Despite worsening economic conditions and against the trends of government cuts, 2011 is proving to be a very successful year for European Electronique.
With the changes introduced by the coalition government to capital programmes such as scrapping of Building Schools for the Future and at the same time expanding of the Academies Act and introduction of Free Schools, we expect this to play to the company's strengths and present major opportunities.
The last financial year ending 31 March 2011 proved to be our most successful to date with a 50 per cent increase in revenues almost doubling our profits, and we expect this trend to continue for the foreseeable future.
What would you have as your last meal? Typical Polish fare and a nice bottle of red wine.
Who would you like to be stuck in a lift with? There are three approaches I can take to this: a lift mechanic who could get me out sooner rather than later; a comedian who could entertain me and make me laugh; or an intellectual I can have deep and meaningful discussions with and who would make the time go quickly. On reflection, I will go for the comedian Michael McIntyre who would make me laugh and ensure I enjoy the whole experience.
Have any of your predictions come true this year? Unfortunately, it seems my prediction of the double-dip recession is, as we speak, coming to fruition.
What do you see as the channel's biggest challenge in 2012? In the current economic climate where the competition is intensifying, margins are being squeezed and customers are demanding more for less, the only way to survive and thrive is to streamline and be as efficient as possible. You have to be quick and agile to recognise and seize any opportunities and to find a more innovative way to do business.
What is the best part of your day? The best part of the day is about 8pm when, after having checked the children's homework (with the battles every parent has), we can finally relax and spend time together playing games or watching a movie.
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It may not have been the face-to-face shindig we're accustomed to, but Colin Murray kept the belly laughs coming at the virtual awards earlier this month. Here we relive the highlights