Q&A: Derek Wilcocks, MD Internet Solutions

BusinessTech got the opportunity to have a Q&A session with Derek Wilcocks, MD of Internet Solutions, to try and find out what makes him tick, and what he sees ahead for 2012.

What is your buzzword for the industry in 2012?

Cloud computing was a buzzword that was overused in 2011, but I think that it will come into its own in 2012.

What is your biggest challenge, what keeps you awake at night?

Finding and keeping the best people within the organisation.

What would you like to see from ICASA in 2012?

I would like them to stick to the time-frames around spectrum allocation and LLU, and ensure that they don’t let these deadlines slip.

What do you do when you’re not slaving away at the office?

I love reading and travelling with my family. Most recently my family and I took a holiday to Australia and New Zealand. I also love bird watching and I’m also a coffee fanatic. I’m still searching for the machine that makes the best cup of coffee – but that might be the barista and not the machine.

What is your business passion? What excites you most, what gets you out of bed in the morning?

I love the people that I work with. Having been with Internet Solutions and Dimension Data for 17 years now, I’ve always felt inspired by the people I work with.

For me business success is all about putting people in the correct positions so that they can do their best work and harness their talents and capabilities. As such, I try to give everyone the opportunity to improve and realise their potential by creating the right environment for them to grow.

At the end of the day people are social organisms, they are not deterministic. This makes them inherently complex and they are driven by a number of factors in the workplace. I find this interaction extremely fascinating and draw great satisfaction from seeing people within my organisation excel.

Did Santa spoil you with any new tech gadgets over Christmas?

There was nothing major under the Christmas tree. However, my family has had an iMac for the last six years so we took to opportunity to upgrade. We now have a new iMac that has all the latest technology and software, the most popular of which has been the HD card slot.

Any favourite apps in your library?

The Economist is my favourite application on my iPad. I was using TweetDeck on my iPad too but I recently changed to HootSuite and I am really enjoying it. I still use TweetDeck on my laptop though.

Online video in enterprise? Yes or no?

Absolutely yes. The problem with email as a business communication tool is that it is hard to properly convey emotion. Video is a far richer interactive experience and offers a great deal in terms of improving collaboration. Enterprises definitely need to consider using it more if they can manage this sort of application in terms of their bandwidth constraints.

Internet Solutions and Dimension Data now use video extensively for internal and external meetings as we recognise the fact that the use of video can be a competitive differentiator and it is fast becoming a very important and essential business tool.

Social media – yes or no?

Absolutely yes. For most enterprises there is still a lot they need to understand with regard to the power of social media. I believe that enterprises need to experiment and learn more about the subject so that they can harness this important communication medium, both internally and externally.

I personally use it extensively and Internet Solutions is trying out various internal social network solutions to improve internal communication and collaboration. Interestingly the company ran an internal competition recently where we asked our employees to elaborate on what Internet Solutions’ values meant to them. We received a third of the entries as video submissions, a third as pictures and the other third as text.

This is a prime example of how social media opens up communication channels and makes the whole experience much richer. Staff are also becoming more savvy in terms of how they use technology in their everyday lives and find new ways to communicate, so I think that this should be encouraged within organisations.

Must Read

Partner Content

Show comments

Trending Now

Follow Us

Q&A: Derek Wilcocks, MD Internet Solutions