Intelligent CIO Africa Issue 70 - Page 72

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What do you think is the current hot technology talking point ?
The human race always aspires to live longer , pursue happiness , and communicate with each other . This is the foundation of why you see and feel this genuine push in all directions whether it is around climate , health , space or communication and connectivity . I feel privileged to work for a company like Corning that plays pivotal roles in all of these areas .
For my specific area of specialisation , i . e . communication technology , the direction is to enable us to use broadband at its ultimate capabilities to allow waves of new applications to thrive . The advances in 5G will continue to bring new opportunities across industries , and also enable the growth of emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence ( AI ) and Machine Learning ( ML ), which are at the forefront of conversations in boardrooms as organisations look to digitally transform themselves . It also allows multiple improvements in the way we work and live and I find it very exciting to be a part of this transformation .
It is worth remembering that optical fibres are at the core of distance learning , telemedicine , remote work , and all shared content platforms as we witness the Digital Transformation around us . It is fascinating that this strand of glass , invented by Corning over 50 years ago is helping us every day to connect , communicate and work better together , and to expand the bandwidth of human potential .
How do you deal with stress and unwind outside the office ?
What do you currently identify as the major areas of investment in your industry ?
I believe infrastructure will continue to be a main driver for investment because the world that we want to live in requires specific levels of technologyinfrastructure advancement . In understanding that we can also see that as infrastructure is being built , we see investment flowing into areas of Digital Transformation , cyber security , and platform innovation . The world we will live in is being built now .
What are the regionspecific challenges when implementing new technologies in the Middle East and Africa ?
Our region is extremely diverse , and this can be seen by understanding which stage each nation is at . Some nations have achieved their aspirational infrastructure projects while others are on the way and some due to complex geopolitical or financial situation haven ’ t even started .
However , I believe the main underlaying challenge is hesitation from private funds to join this transformation projects and the pressure on state funds to do many things at the same time could limit it from reaching its full potential .
What changes to your job role have you seen in the last year and how do you see these developing in the next 12 months ?
I ’ m a history fan , so when I ’ m looking to unwind , I love to travel , especially to see historical places , or read books or listen to podcasts on ancient history . It helps remind me that growth requires patience and time . It is also fascinating to see how our ancestors advanced despite all the limitations they faced at the time . I also make sure to spend time with my kids , experiencing the world through their eyes , which I believe teaches me something new every day .
If you could go back and change one career decision , what would it be ?
The nature of challenge has changed and with it the nature of complexity . This excites me because this would require me to learn even more and work even harder to build the set of competencies required . The other aspect to what I do has to a lot do with people , and this part presents me with the most complex challenge , as I believe a good leader is as good as his team is .
What advice would you offer somebody aspiring to obtain C-level position in your industry ?
I am a great believer that we are the yield of many different small and big decisions that we have taken since a very early age . This has had a profound impact on every aspect of my entire life , and I would not change anything , because I am here today as a result of all the highs and lows I have experienced over the years .
Take the time to prepare yourself , find a mentor to learn from , and prepare yourself to give wholly to the industry . I also believe only with patience comes experience , which allow you to do actual learning . It is a long and hard journey to take and only with persistence and hard work you can get there . p
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