The tech sector is a lucrative area for anybody who is building a career. Whether you are looking to advance your personal career or build a successful company, there are plenty of opportunities. On Episode 19 of The Disruptive Mindset Podcast I spoke to Andrew Diaper, the Executive Vice President & Head of Europe at Collabera Digital, about what makes him and his company so successful. Here’s what he said:  

What’s your growth strategy?

The strategy is to pivot the organisation to become a digital engineering technical services company focused on enterprise accounts. Instead of just saying, ‘There’s some free software that you can use, which in our experience is better than the one that you’d be paying for, for the last five years’, we’re challenging the norm. We’re being disruptive. We’re saying to people, ‘Is this really an agile delivery model? Actually, you need to build a new framework.’ The strategy in simple terms is going after enterprise accounts and being forward thinking in our approach. 

In addition to that, I want people to say we’re easy to do business with. I want to have some fun and put a smile on your face. If someone says, ‘Can you sign an NDA?’ don’t take it in and five weeks later. Say, ‘Yeah, I’ll go and chase up on legal’, have a look at the NDA, sign it, and send it back. Just be sensible. We’re seeing really positive financial results from this year because of those strategies. 

What has been the differentiator for your business? 

You gotta have good people. I have some great people who’ve worked with me for more than a decade. So when you’ve got good people, and those people understand the industry that you want to target, then you’ve got credibility. You may have some relationships where you’ve built trust – then it’s a case of going back to basics and saying, ‘We need to understand what you really need,’ not telling a client what you think they want. That goes back to the forward thinking I mentioned, and the role of challenging the client by saying ‘I’m not sure you need that. You should look elsewhere,’ which creates credibility. 

If you’ve been around for a long while and you’ve delivered, people are willing to give you an opportunity if you ask for it and you can back up why you should have it. When I say ‘back up’, I mean does the company that you’re representing have the ability to deliver on the work? Can you commit it because all of the teams are behind it? Those are the biggest differentiators; the freedom, the agility and the speed.

How do you create your success? 

You can look at things materialistically, achieve something, then I think ‘I want to achieve more’. Then you’ll think ‘I want to do something else’. First and foremost, I tell everyone, ‘There’s nothing that we can’t do’. I know that other people use this methodology called SHED, which stands for sleep, hydration, exercise and diet. Mine should be called SHEDF, because I want fun there as well. You need to love what you do. A lot of people have the expectation that if you work hard, you’re gonna get rewarded. We also know that at the end of the day, you need to let off some steam. You have to be careful chasing that success, because those goals can suck you in, but you need to balance that with something you enjoy. 

To learn more about Andrew’s career and advice, tune into Episode 19 of The Disruptive Mindset Podcast here

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