After eight years as an Engineer in the Royal Australian Army, I briefly worked at Telstra before joining Honeywell Australia. In 2000 I moved with Honeywell to Europe, and in 2010 took a position at ASSA ABLOY. My current role is global CTO for the ASSA ABLOY Group.
During my career I have developed extensive knowledge of the global residential and commercial security industry, and of all aspects of building automation. I have had responsibility for sales leadership, project and product management, R&D, marketing and general management, in both Australia and Europe.
How did you come to work in the security industry?
At Honeywell Australia in the early 1990s, I was working on the design and installation of medium- to large-sized projects with a mix of building automation and security. I felt a natural inclination towards the security products, which were undergoing important technical changes at the time — integrated solutions, RFID technologies, graphic displays and more. I found this interesting and ended up specialising by taking on the role of Product Manager for security products in Australia.
What is the best professional advice you have received (and from whom)?
A very good boss of mine once told me that it is fine to rush ahead and try to change the world, but it is critical to ensure your team is standing beside you: you can’t do it alone.
What's something few people know about you?
I am a rather poor but passionate fisherman. I enjoy an occasional fishing trip with friends and would like to do it much more.
Film or TV?
|Both. Film for drama; TV for information, especially documentaries on technology and science.|
|Biggest hero||My wife. How she tolerates me sometimes I don’t know!|
|First job||My first “real” paid job was as a jig fitter making roof trusses and frames for homes.|
|Ideal holiday||Fishing from a boat in a sunny location like the Mediterranean. My wife would be very happy, and that is very important firstly, plus I might even catch a fish!|
|Favourite album||ELO, “Out of the Blue”.|
What's the most rewarding thing about what you do for a living?
Without doubt the people I get to work with, both colleagues and customers. The opportunity to learn from them, to understand challenges they face or ideas they have, and then work with them and others on solving them. This is what gets me out of bed in the morning.
What are your interests, hobbies and passions outside security?
Aside from poor attempts at fishing, I love walking (“rambling,” as the English call it) through wonderful countryside around my home in South Oxfordshire. I also love to cook — and tend to take over the kitchen come weekends and the BBQ in summer (I am an Aussie, after all). And I love to read and learn about technology and science in general, not as an expert but more a collector of interesting facts.
Where was your last vacation? Would you recommend it to others?
This summer I was truly lucky to spend two weeks in the Greek Islands, a week on land at a hotel and a week sailing on a catamaran with friends. Would I recommend it? Absolutely, especially the sailing part. Being with good friends on a small boat gave me a great perspective on island life.