Intelligent CIO Europe Issue 65 | Page 81

Keri Gilder , CEO , Colt Technology Services
On the lighter side of things , we ask the industry experts what makes them tick . . . .

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Keri Gilder , CEO , Colt Technology Services

wWhat would you describe as your most memorable achievement in the enterprise tech industry ?

Of all industries , ours has had the greatest influence on the Digital Transformation we ’ re experiencing across society , in our homes and in our workplaces . As a pioneer of the digital age , it ’ s our duty to address the next big challenge : to make sure our people reflect the diversity of the markets we serve ; and to make sure our industry strives for sustainability , to leave our people and planet in a better place .
Three of my proudest times have been in the last six months . First , I led the introduction of an industry-wide Inclusion and Diversity score – a benchmarking tool that uses machine learning-based sentiment analysis to provide a metric , measuring a company ’ s progress in terms of inclusion . Second , in the autumn we were awarded the EcoVadis platinum rating , placing us in the top 1 % of global businesses for our outstanding commitment to ESG , so that is a huge honour . Finally , in November , we announced our intention to purchase Lumen EMEA , which marked the beginning of a very exciting journey .
What first made you think of a career in technology ?
I have always loved technology . I was one of the first kids to have an Atari game system back in the 1980s and grew up fixing and building things as a kid . My dad was a master electrician and he was one of the first people in our small town to install TV satellites . He often took us with him on the installs and I learned how communication worked through the air . Later in life he helped me build a science project that was a light-chaser using LED diodes .
I grew up with technology , I loved learning about it and putting the components together to make it work .
My first introduction to computers was in high school , a programming class in PASCAL . I really enjoyed software development and this led me to gaining my Bachelor ’ s degree in Business Administration and Management Information Systems at New Mexico State University , I started my career in network engineering and then progressed into sales . Around nine years ago , I moved to Europe and held several leadership roles with the networking solutions provider , Ciena . In 2018 I joined Colt as the Chief Commercial Officer ( CCO ) and then two years later , in May 2020 , I was appointed CEO . As CEO , I ’ m responsible for delivering Colt ’ s vision to be the digital infrastructure company that the world ’ s leading businesses choose to connect with .
What style of management philosophy do you employ with your current position ?
Colt is built on generating extraordinary connections – for our customers , partners and people . A huge part of my philosophy is focused on the importance of driving this connectivity both from a technology and digital infrastructure perspective and from a human perspective . Connecting with people through honest engagement , being empathetic with a mission to inspire ; it creates communities and helps reduce loneliness and isolation and ultimately makes the world a better place to live .
I ’ m also a champion for flexible working . I read a report recently in The Times that said hybrid workers eat better , sleep better and get more exercise , and 66 % of
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