What has been your personal highlight of 2020?
My personal highlight has been getting to spend a lot more time at home with my family. Usually there's a lot of travel involved in my working week but as this has not been possible since the pandemic hit this year it's been fantastic to spend quality time with my family.
From a professional perspective, given the extremely challenging circumstances that we've all had to face this year my highlight would have to be seeing how amazingly the channel has flexed and adapted to new challenges to continue to drive value and serve the end customer. I've been especially proud of the Arrow team in the UK and how we've been able to seamlessly shift to continue to support our partners and vendors even within a changing environment.
Which three celebrities would you invite to a Zoom party?
Jürgen Klopp, Gordon Ramsay and Taylor Swift (my daughter is a HUGE "Swifty"!)
What has been your guiltiest lockdown pleasure?
With a lot less travel needed it has been great to get some time on a daily basis to get a training session in - it would have to be HIIT training in the living room.
Which tech figurehead has inspired you most this year, and why?
A difficult question as there are a lot of hugely inspirational leaders in our industry. The one I would have to call out is Elon Musk - not only has he completely changed the game in terms of the automotive industry, he continues to challenge the status quo and disrupt across many verticals and industries.
What piece of technology, or app, have you not been able to do without during the pandemic?
I have a new Guitar amp (Spark) with AI built into an app that gives you access to backing tracks, different tones and sounds - a fantastic way to jam even if you can't have people round!
If you could be anyone else for a week, who would you be and what would you do?
It would definitely be a week in the life of Jürgen Klopp but in an environment where fans could also participate in game day. To see up close the evolution that's been driven at Liverpool FC would be fantastic to be involved in (recent Aston Villa performance aside!)
Do you miss face-to-face events?
Yes definitely. This is very much a people-orientated industry so it does create challenges when this can't happen. We must think differently and continue to innovate to find optimal ways to continue to support our partners and vendors.
How will COVID leave its mark on the way the channel operates long term?
I definitely believe that the way the channel engages longer term will have changed for good post-COVID. There will certainly be a return to face-to-face engagements, events, enablement etc. However, these will be reduced as we find more efficient and cost-effective mediums to deliver a similar experience remotely. This will mean that the face-to-face connections that we do return to will be even more valuable and engaging.