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19/12/14

C-Suite #Career #Advice: Cameron Rejali, Arqiva

We ask industry leading C-suite professionals for their expert career advice...

Name: Cameron Rejali,  Company: Arqiva, Job Title: CTO, Location: London, UK

What was the most valuable piece of career advice that you received?
Ensuring the separation of work and home has been one of the most important pieces of career advice I’ve received. I have seen so many people in consulting and other senior roles trying to juggle work and a home life, with more often than not the home life being the one that suffered. The juggling act is not about sacrificing something, but separating the two, allowing you to be more productive and a better employee because you are able to focus and contribute in a more effective way. This advice has allowed me to feel I could be successful and move up without sacrificing a home life.

What advice would you give to someone starting their career in the tech industry?
If you are looking to move quickly up the ranks in a career in technology you have two paths; either become a subject matter expert, which involves knowing everything there is about a technology and staying on top of each and every development, or the broader approach that I have taken – which is to learn enough about multiple domains to understand how things interact with each other in a business. What are the economics of the technology and how do the business processes work with that technology for example? Here your understanding will never be that of an expert, but should also be more than a general manager who is only two inches deep in the subject. To use an analogy, you should look to drill holes around 5-10 meters down in multiple areas, rather than 100 meters down in one area. Very few people today are able to collect knowledge in multiple areas and understand business well enough to link them – it is a rare and highly valuable skill.

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What tips would you give to someone aiming for a c-level position?
It’s not just about the idea, but how you convey the idea. It is not just about being smart but being able to bring people with you – leading them and listening to them. The people aspect is absolutely vital if you want to get to the c-level – yes, you need to be able to do the technical part of the job but what will make you truly successful is knowing how to make teams work together, get people to rally  behind a mission and feel good about it. Those are the skills that are really important at the c-level.

Are you particularly proud of any career advice that you’ve given or the career route/development of anyone you’ve mentored?

When I reflect on my career the things I feel most proud of are the people who have worked for me, who have then gone on and been promoted, moved into other parts of business and who have made a big impact. My best achievements are not the projects I have done – but the people I have seen blossom – people who went from a junior manager position under me to becoming a managing director over a period of five years.

Source: http://www.idgconnect.com/abstract/9160/c-suite-career-advice-cameron-rejali-arqiva

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