Intelligent CIO APAC Issue 32 - Page 80

What do you think is the current hot technology talking point ?
I ’ m old enough to have witnessed a few waves of technology , with cloud computing being the clear stand-out from the last decade . What we ’ re seeing now is an explosion of cloud-native computing , as a way to deliver new applications and experiences for enterprise customers that want to move at the pace of start-ups . Security is the other high agenda item . Zero trust architecture and solutions that address the cloud-native development environment are coming into their own .
How do you deal with stress and unwind outside the office ?
Living in an ‘ always on ’ culture makes it harder than it used to be but having a supportive family and young children helps . They can really cut through stress ! My wife owns a CrossFit gym on Sydney ’ s northern beaches and I try to get there six days a week , although building Solo . io this past year has forced me to cut back a bit . My other passion is football . Being from England , I grew up with a footy at my feet and I ’ ve enjoyed the game for most of my life .
If you could go back and change one career decision , what would it be ?
Everyone ’ s life has its major turning points . The thought of going back and changing one thing brings movies like The Butterfly Effect to mind – everything in your current life changes completely and I wouldn ’ t take that risk ! I ’ m super thankful for all the opportunities I ’ ve been given and whatever direction I ’ ve chosen has been right overall for where I ’ ve ended up . One of the biggest career decisions I ’ ve made was to move to Australia 14 years ago . Leaving behind family and friends in the UK was hard but I was lucky enough to get married and have children in my new homeland so I ’ m incredibly happy with where I am today .
What do you currently identify as the major areas of investment in your industry ?
Austerity and economic factors are driving decisions at present . The predicted recession and rising interest rates are influencing consumer behavior and that has a roll-on effect for a lot of our customers . We are also seeing a big focus on security investment , particularly in the API space . APIs have increased the attack surface and , while security postures may have been well thought through when they first became prevalent , the capability of bad actors in this space has increased . That ’ s created a huge challenge for network security and the focus is very much on trying to knock off the biggest risks .
What are the region specific challenges when implementing new technologies in APAC ?
Cultural differences and the geographic spread can be significant barriers to entry for new players . Markets within the region are at different levels of maturity and aligning the value of your technology with where a country is at can be a balancing act . Partners are super-critical – you can ’ t succeed without leveraging their eco-systems – and it can be a challenge working out who to invest in , particularly if your own resources are modest .
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 only joined Solo . io 12 months ago , there haven ’ t been too many . We ’ ve been running at 1,000 miles an hour and we ’ re yet to slow down as our APAC sales machine builds momentum . Next year we ’ ll be investing in goto-market resources in key countries and that will mean some overseas travel for me .
What advice would you offer to someone aspiring to obtain a C-level position in your industry ?
Look for mentors who can nurture and elevate you . I ’ ve had the good fortune to have had several . The right person at the right time can be a real career accelerant . Taking opportunities as they ’ re presented is also important – you need to be able to recognize when it ’ s the right time to move . p
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