Tell us a bit about your career and your journey to elina
I have always loved building things and figuring out how things work. My career actually started in PR and communications before I made the decisive move to follow my skills and passion into systems development and architecture. I joined the large defense contractor Northrup Grumman in the 90’s. There, my team and I built critical defense systems, missing people tracking software and immigration entry systems for various US government agencies. Thinking back to how we developed systems that were deemed “classified” – we had to be meticulous about our code, getting the user stories right and testing was our lifeblood. It was a good school for when I joined elina back in 2008 after we won a contract to build a property management system for a multi-owner resort group. Building strong, clean systems that could easily be put into use is really why we are here today. It has always been a dream to be an entrepreneur - my parents both started their own business - so joining elina as an owner made everything click into place.
What do you like most about working for elina?
I love travelling, seeing new places and meeting new people. On personality tests, I always scored bang in the middle of introvert and extrovert, so while I enjoy private reflection and thinking deeply about the issues our customers face, I also love being with people and moving around.
Tell us a bit about your life outside of work...
Travelling gives me energy. Wherever we go – and it does not have to be exotic - it’s a wanted adventure! My two boys and my wife love travelling, too. Our idea of bliss is quite literally eating and drinking in each place we go – a way to a man’s heart is truly his stomach! My favourite places in the world are close to the sea or the snow. There is something magical about the properties of water: the sound, the smell and how it can transport and transform.
Have you any funny career incidents that you can't get out of your head?
When I first joined this company, I was actually running a mobile payments company here in London. I took some time off to pitch for the contract for the systems build, what would later become elina, and when we got the contract, I quit my job!
What is your mantra to success?
Success is all about staying relevant, always reinventing and delivering useful products and services for our customers. As they evolve and as the marketplace evolves we need to build clean, impactful software that can meet their needs when they arise. In the software as a service model that means staying ahead of the game by listening, staying close to the teams that serve our customers and finding the intersections between needs and wants to constantly deliver value.