What Canadian tech execs love about their job – February Community Slideshow Part 1

Love is in the air! Welcome to ITWC’s February 2018 community slideshow – every month we ask the leaders of the Canadian technology companies we cover about a general life topic as a fun way to get to know the community a little better and encourage the sector to share its experiences. Since it’s Valentine’s Day, we figured there was no better time than now to ask the tech community what they love about their job so much.

Here’s the question we asked: “What do you love about your job?”

We received a lot of great responses that you can browse in our slideshow.

[Editor’s note: some answers have been edited for length]

This is part one of a two part slideshow. You can view the other part here.

Andrea Stairs, General Manager, eBay Canada and Latin America

Early in my career, I never thought I would be involved in the tech industry; now, I can’t imagine myself anywhere else! As the GM of eBay for Canada and Latin America, I see first-hand how technologies like online marketplaces, artificial intelligence and machine learning coincide to create “inclusive commerce” – that is, trade and economic opportunity for everyone, everywhere. For example: You can be a small business in a remote Canadian community and, thanks to ecommerce platforms like eBay, you can sell your goods to the world, just like the big retailers. Technology can be an incredible enabler and a leveler of the playing field – that’s one of the reasons why I love working in this industry.

[Answer courtesy of the Information Technology Association of Canada]

Satya Sarangi, CEO and President, TmaxSoft Canada Inc.

As CEO of TmaxSoft Canada, I am excited to wake up every day to have an opportunity to shape and change the way our customers and partners conduct their business today and also help them to prepare for the innovative next-generation IT solutions. For me, I see challenges as ways to prove myself and create opportunities not only for our customers but also for the entire technology sector. I love my job in the tech industry because I have the ability to impact and transform the way enterprises conduct their business by removing the shackles and limitations put forth by legacy systems. I also enjoy the ability to create the vision, strategy and execution framework that enables digital transformation for our customer and partners.

[Answer courtesy of ITAC]

Mike Silagadze, CEO, Top Hat

One of the things I love most about my job is the mission that we’re on, which is improving the educational experience for students and professors, which I think ultimately benefits society as a whole. Beyond that, being with a high-growth startup like Top Hat means every day is a new adventure. Being able to constantly do different things is another huge perk I enjoy.

Jaime Leverton, General Manager, VP – Canada and APAC, Cogeco Peer 1

There really is no such thing as a technology company anymore; all companies are tech companies. Technology and innovation are the lifeblood of all companies. We now have companies in “untraditional tech” industries – such as healthcare and automotive – thinking like tech companies, and using innovation to develop new business strategies that are changing the game. It’s a really exciting time for Canadian tech. Canadian companies are leading the way in a number of groundbreaking areas, driving rapid growth, and changing the way we do business. Disruptive technologies go hand-in- hand with accelerated change, and I’m excited to see what’s possible in this new world of digital transformation.

[Answer courtesy of ITAC]

Luc Red Hat Day 2017

Luc Villeneuve, Country Leader, Red Hat Canada

The IT industry is full of amazing people. Over the past 25 years, I’ve been fortunate to have made so many friends and colleagues. It’s a small world and nothing really happens without building fantastic client relationships and nurturing them with trust and respect. This is the key to longevity and success in this business. Building a team centered around the values of diversity and inclusion is my mission but it’s a challenge. Over the last decade, I’ve thrown my energy and talents into driving change. Love what you do and 25 years will pass in a flash!

Trevor Cook, CEO, Payment Source

The thing I love the most is that we are able to make an impact. We’re in an odd business in some ways, but the things we do makes an impact in people’s lives and that’s on the financial inclusion aspect.

[Answer courtesy of ITAC]

Eldon Sprickerhoff, Founder and Chief Security Strategist, eSentire

Working in information security is fast-paced and action-packed; there’s never a dull moment. Cyber-threats are constantly-evolving, whether it be through advanced attackers and complex methods, or unprecedented changes in TTP: tactics, techniques, and procedures. That’s why defending our clients is our first priority—and it’s an ongoing commitment. It’s a privilege to work with a team that’s aligned in the fight against cybercrime, and it brings me great joy to watch my colleagues succeed in their professional pursuits. I look forward to discovering what’s next for this industry.

[Answer courtesy of ITAC]

Patrick Lo, CEO, Privacy Horizon Inc. 

We are on the front lines of healthcare witnessing a revolution driven by advanced technologies. Precision medicine, consumer health and virtual care are leveraging cloud, mobile, AI, social media, the Internet of Things, wearables and medical devices to disrupt the status quo. These apps and devices are poised to become the gateways into our health information infrastructures. With this comes new privacy issues that need to be addressed. I love and welcome the challenge of helping innovative startup companies to build and operate privacy-friendly solutions to accelerate adoption. This allows them to focus on designing and developing their core offerings for their customers and benefits the healthcare ecosystem.

[Answer courtesy of ITAC]

Sean Forkan, country manager of VMware Canada

Sean Forkan, VP and Country Manager, VMware Canada

I first entered the IT industry in 1992 not by choice. I had recently graduated with a degree in Electrical  Engineering and Management and like many fellow graduates, I struggled to find full time employment in my field. As this was in the days before the Internet, I would need to leverage the want ads in the news paper to land from my first role. Since that time, I am grateful for the experiences and growth opportunities this wonderful industry has afforded me. I have been able to travel through the United States and much of Europe with customers and partners in solving complex business challenges. I have had the opportunity to work with and lead people and teams that help make me a better leader. Most of all, I love the complexity and the challenge of this industry. Every day I am afforded a new opportunity to learn, to explore and to grow myself and my team.

[Answer courtesy of ITAC]

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Alex Radu
Alex Raduhttp://www.computerdealernews.com
is a Video Producer for IT World Canada. When not writing or making videos about the tech industry, you can find him reading, watching TV/movies, or watching the Lakers rebuild with one eye open.

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