Q&A with Mary Ellen Genovese at 8x8
Q&A with Mary Ellen Genovese at 8x8:
From the USA to the UK, my journey in communications
This week we interviewed Mary Ellen Genovese, Managing Director of our European Operations
Can you give a brief introduction to your role at 8x8?
Mary Ellen: My role at 8x8 is Managing Director of European Operations. I first started at 8x8 in 2013 and moved to the UK permanently this month. My key responsibilities include helping 8x8 grow its presence in Europe by motivating and inspiring the current team as well as ensuring all team members have a clear sense of purpose and direction.
What encouraged you to join the cloud communications sector?
Mary Ellen: It is exciting to work in a market that is making a positive difference in the way employees and customers communicate and collaborate. Every company in the world needs communications to stay in touch with their global workforce, customers and key service providers.
With the onset of mobile devices, social media, global distributed workforces and the rapid pace of decision making today, business communications must evolve to meet the needs of the modern businesses. 8x8 is doing just that! By combining voice, video, team collaboration, contact centre software and real-time analytics in one open platform we believe we can help businesses of all sizes improve employee productivity, enhance customer experiences, increase revenue, and reduce costs.
You were previously CFO, are there any learnings you’ll take from this into your new role heading up European operations?
Mary Ellen: Yes. As CFO, I was involved in all aspects of the business. I know the processes, the teams, what works well and what is a work in progress. Most importantly I understand our vision, purpose and strategies.
With all global companies, it’s not always easy to keep all the international teams aligned with our vision, core values, and key objectives. As the former CFO, I can help resolve problems early, share best practices across the organisation communicate key objectives, reinforce our corporate culture, leverage our local strengths bringing internal experts to the local team when required. We are stronger working together as opposed to independently.
How much has the industry changed since you joined in 2013?
Mary Ellen: In 2013 we sold mostly to small/medium sized businesses. Today we are selling to large Enterprises with 10,000 or more seats and our Enterprise segment is our fastest growing revenue segment.
When I first joined 8x8 in 2013 we sold both unified communications and contact centre software but the products were sold separately. Today we have one team selling integrated solutions from simple phones in the cloud to fully integrated unified solutions with contact centre software and rich analytics.
Also, in today’s world, it is all about the data. Since we own all our technology, we can harness the rich data we collect from every call and every engagement. This means we can enable our customers to solve their customer’s problems quickly, often in one call, improving the overall experience.
Are you ready for your rapid-fire questions?
Mary Ellen: Lets do it!
Favourite business apps on your smartphone besides 8x8?
Mary Ellen In a new city that I love to explore I have been using Citymapper and Google maps very frequently. They make getting around London and learning about the sites very easy and informative.
If you weren’t in the cloud industry, what would you be doing?
Mary Ellen I have been very blessed in my career to date, with many opportunities, each one I loved more than the last. My next venture will be retirement where I would love to work with non-profits and teach financial literacy at the high school level.
Mary Ellen “If you want to go fast go alone, if you want to go far, go together.” – African proverb.