So why did you return to Australia when you had this great role with a leading IT services company?
It was tremendous having the opportunity to run a $3bn business across multiple geographies. The scale that you get, the engagements that you work on, the opportunities, the partner conversations and client engagements - it was all an incredible experience.
At the time I was asked to commit to a bigger role at Insight, for another 3-5 year period. We'd got to the point where my kids had already started school in the US, and I was really looking to bring them back to Australia. I wasn't really ready to commit to another 3-5 years.
We came to an agreement, and I did stay for another year or so, but that was it.
So your kids now have American accents?
Not only American accents, but authentic Texas -- the full southern drawl. They were little babies when we went, and they grew up speaking like Americans. Fortunately, after a couple of years back, they now sound like little Aussies.
How does the Australian market differ to the US one, what are the unique challenges here?
There are definitely some key differences. While I live in Australia, I do travel a lot for this role. Never mind the differences between the USA and APAC, there are huge differences within APAC. We do business differently in Hong Kong, China, Singapore, NZ and Australia. Even the A/NZ market compared to the Asia market is completely different.
The vision is obviously global, but one of the biggest differences, say in Australia versus China, is that in China its all about Guanxi -- the relationship you have with people, before you start doing business with them. Here in Australia, while its certainly about relationships its more about what the client needs are, what the solution is, how you're going to help them meet their needs. The criteria of doing business with someone certainly relies a lot less on how long you've known someone.
The obvious difference is scale. China and the US have opportunities of scale beyond anything you work on here.
Do you see ANZ as a testing ground for a lot of new technologies and strategies, that then get rolled out internationally?
Here in APAC we've built our brand and reputation around co-licensing and strategic sourcing solutions that we have in market. We've been doubling the business in terms of profitability every few years. So we've had a tremendous growth trajectory in this region, and we're looking to double it again in the coming couple of years.
We're looking to transform our message and branding to be leading with the Cloud and looking more like a Cloud focused solutions provider in this market.
Sign up for Computerworld eNewsletters.