Intelligent CIO Africa Issue 72 - Page 72

GET TO KNOW
Work hard but play harder ! That ’ s been my philosophy . As work never stops , maintaining a healthy worklife balance is crucial . Being in good physical and mental health can help you stay ahead of the curve .
The main objective of all organisations is to enable business operations to be digitally agile . At the same time , the emphasis on generating a “ wow ” user experience across various digital channels has increased with the rising use of digital technology . Every business is a software company creating products , and the distinctive digital experience each business develops serves as a competitive advantage .
How do you deal with stress and unwind outside the office ?
Work hard but play harder ! That ’ s been my philosophy . As work never stops , maintaining a healthy work-life balance is crucial . Being in good physical and mental health can help you stay ahead of the curve .
Depending on my workload for the day , I alternate between morning meditation and gym sessions . But I never skip my daily evening strolls with only music for company after dinner . These walks greatly reduce tension .
What do you currently identify as the major areas of investment in your industry ?
Right now , huge investments are being made in automation , IoT , and Artificial Intelligence . However , the sectors receiving the most investment are the cloud and the creation of digital experiences .
As I mentioned earlier , the region is focused on transforming itself into a digital economy . Organisations are at different stages of their digital journeys , but the majority are developing and delivering digital services that offer a great user experience , whether it be an e-citizen service or a consumer banking platform . This is where companies like WSO2 play a significant role .
What are the region-specific challenges when implementing new technologies in the Middle East and Africa ?
While the region has been the testing ground for many ground-breaking technologies , mass adoption has been slow . This is because many organisations like to see their peers ’ success rate before committing to their own use . To ensure that projects are successful , technology and IT services providers need to set realistic expectations and clearly define the scope of deliverables .
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 make every effort to avoid working on the weekends so I can play golf with friends or watch my son play cricket . Every time I have a stressful workday , I watch a comedy or romantic movie to unwind .
If you could go back and change one career decision what would it be ?
I don ’ t tend to look back and harbour regrets . I firmly believe that whatever has happened is always for a good reason , and I am where I need to be .
COVID-19 has greatly altered the way IT projects have been carried out in the region , which has always been heavily onshore . Suddenly organisations here have come to realise the advantages of remote delivery and the resulting cost arbitration .
E-commerce and online channels have grown tremendously , and this will lead to greater adoption of digital technologies . Cloud adoption is the next big wave starting to rise in the region . It ’ s an exciting time !
What advice would you offer somebody aspiring to obtain C-level position in your industry ?
There is no substitute for “ hard , smart ” work . Run IT like a business , and then empower that business . Companies look up to people who help the business to grow . You can become the next CXO ! p
72 INTELLIGENTCIO AFRICA www . intelligentcio . com