What has been your personal highlight of 2020?
Witnessing our team working tirelessly through the lockdown, helping partners to adapt and respond to the coronavirus crisis, while also having to adjust to different circumstances and ways of working themselves.
Overnight our organisation went from primarily office based to remote and the way they responded, making the right calls and decisions in tough circumstances, and supporting their colleagues, was tremendous. From HR on the frontline fielding questions from colleagues concerned about their health or financial security, through to IT working diligently to ensure people could work remotely for the first time.
Which three celebrities would you invite to a Zoom party?
Peter Kay, Kevin Hart and Micky Flanagan.
What has been your guiltiest lockdown pleasure?
Having the time to exercise! Being able to better use the two hours a day normally spent sitting in traffic has been refreshing.
Which tech figurehead has inspired you most this year, and why?
Reed Hastings, Netflix CEO. Aside from the workaholic's increasingly successful business model, along with the unique culture built within the company, this year he took the time to set up a new initiative, providing $120m towards scholarships at historically black colleges and universities — the largest individual donation to the institutions to date. This is on top of a further $100m the Hastings Fund previously provided for improving education for underprivileged children.
What piece of technology, or app, have you not been able to do without during the pandemic?
My EarPods. A vital tool in the survival kit for anyone working from home in a busy household with teenagers, dogs, and endless delivery drop-offs.
If you could be anyone else for a week, who would you be and what would you do?
Ed Woodward (chief executive of Manchester United). I'd sort out the laborious transfer process seen each year.
Do you miss face-to-face events?
Yes absolutely! We are all in the people business. Regardless of how tech-savvy we may be, face-to-face events are still a great way to build relationships and an effective way to capture the attention of others and drive productive collaboration.
How will COVID leave its mark on the way the channel operates long term?
Inevitably there will be many positive and negative long-term impacts due to the rapid changes we've seen. However, as we have already witnessed, the channel has shown tremendous resilience and ability to quickly adapt, enabling workers and businesses to instantly evolve in this new environment. Therefore, I believe the channel will successfully navigate any opportunities and challenges that lie ahead, continuing to demonstrate the true value it delivers.
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