A. Antoniou (Iron Mountain): The role of the CEO in the Digital Age

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Executives need to have a balanced package of technical skills and soft skills such as empathy and clarity in order to be successful in their role, says Andrea Antoniou, Regional Managing Director of Iron Mountain Eastern and Southern Europe. At the same time, it analyzes the digital age we are going through but also the technologies that will concern us in the future.

– What is the digital transformation for businesses in practice? What are the necessary steps for a business?

Digital transformation is the practical application of digital technologies to create or modify processes, culture and user experiences to meet the changing demands of businesses and their customers. The digital transformation overcomes but also integrates traditional roles such as sales, marketing, operating structures and customer service. At the same time, as we move from physical management and paper to digital applications to manage our information, we have the opportunity to redesign how a business operates with new tools and digital technology at our side.

Any change in the structure and procedures of an organization, requires that some basic data are met, such as the participation and support of management and shareholders in the decision to implement a clear strategy by evaluating the requirements of participating parties and dynamic analysis of strengths and weaknesses. but also the risks and opportunities arising from the digital transformation. Only through a comprehensive strategy is it possible to properly manage change, inform and educate stakeholders and have comprehensive control of implementation data such as costs, timing and available resources.

– What does your company offer and who are your customers?

Iron Mountain is a leader in the field of information management, both in Greece and internationally, with a presence in more than 50 countries and a clientele of over 95% of the Fortune 1000 Companies. The strength of Iron Mountain is the perception and experience in managing information as a given in both physical and electronic form. At the same time, the dynamic course of Iron Mountain in the fields of digitization, data center services and more classic services such as physical file storage, make our Company one of the important players on the way to the digital age.

– What are the technologies that will concern us in the future?

As we all know, we are going through today, what is called the 4th industrial revolution, but in essence, this is the transition from mechanical and timeless processes to automation with smart methods and technological innovation. We already have solutions in front of us such as artificial intelligence and machine learning which improve the efficiency and accuracy in exporting and accessing large volumes of data and in their analysis, without overlooking that the human factor and contribution is essential for data validation, in each case of automation.

– In the public sector, how could the digitization of information be implemented?

The digitization of information and the creation and implementation of digital tools and solutions for easy access to information is essential for the public sector and for its evolution, with the main goal of facilitating citizens and businesses in any contact with the state. Essential examples are the management of citizens’ applications for aids, the modernization of education with an interactive learning methodology, the development in the field of health with the creation of the electronic patient file.

Recognizing the existence of an important historical archive concerning culture, history, customs and traditions, but also the operation of the state, which is now in print, it is a given that with digitization, unhindered access by all will be possible. Therefore, the parameter of the combination and coexistence of the historical physical archive with the new information and technology in the transition to the digital age is extremely important.

At the same time, there is a significant benefit for both companies and the state itself with the implementation of projects that will accelerate processes such as justice, labor, property and land development, etc., paving the way for investment and real development.

The goal and expected result of the digitization of the public sector is to improve efficiency, speed in access to information for both citizens and businesses, and transparency in public processes.

– A new executive who has the ambition to become CEO, what would you advise?

The only advice I would give is not to give up. This will give him the supplies and strength to achieve his goals. To continue to evolve and improve himself and to be flexible and receptive to changes that are caused, naturally, in a dynamic work environment, helping him to adapt immediately and to formulate his new strategy in time.

– What skills and abilities do you think the new and promising executives will be required to possess in the future?

Based on my own experience and the direction given by the market development, executives now need to have a balanced package of technical skills and soft skills such as empathy and clarity in order to be successful in their role. They must be insightful and at the same time have quick reflexes which allows for immediate adaptability to the new data appearing in front of it.

– What are the basic principles that you consider should govern a CEO’s relationship with his / her clients or partners and what has changed in this area since the pandemic?

The CEO, as the main representative of the organization, must maintain the principles of ethics and transparency that allow him to operate and deal with partners and customers without endangering the reputation of the organization and himself. This has not changed due to the pandemic, on the contrary, it has been strengthened since the seriousness of the organizations during the pandemic period has proved to be a serious criterion in the relationship with customers evolving into a partnership.

– Compliance with ESG principles is a prerequisite for an organization to even secure funding in the near future. How much have you been prepared in this context and how much has your management model of your organization been affected?

At Iron Mountain as one of the largest organizations in the world, with over 25,000 employees and presence in over 55 countries, we strive to be the most trusted partner of our customers and partners to protect and create value in innovative and socially responsible ways . Above all, we focus our efforts on what matters most, namely ensuring customer confidence, empowering our people, strengthening our communities and protecting our planet, ensuring that we operate with integrity and in a way that creates value for all. our stakeholders.


Source From: Forbes

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