The Art Enthusiast Who Helps Companies Go Digital

April 16, 2021

From factory worker to digital entrepreneur

Can you, please, share with us your career development until now? What stages in your life have had the greatest impact on you and why?

I started working when I was 15, as a broom manager in a factory. I understood it is far more efficient to get things done while working in a team, so all my future decisions about work were about greater engagement with more and more people. In my early twenties, I found myself managing a movement and its infrastructure project. That is where a team of more than 200 made me realize what management really does and how theory (from Uni) connects to reality. After that, I got into process design and startups and went from an idea to a multinational comapny in a few years, managing the process, until I was forced out.

In my thirties, I was fundraising for arts and healthcare, working on some novel concepts. I then dropped everything, but this time it was my decision. I changed country, started from below deck again. My digital journey was constant, however after moving to Vienna, I was more and more focused on the marriage between digital and management. Now I look towards new tech and how management can be improved, while running, providing all-inclusive digital services for SMEs.

Did you originally want to pursue a different career? If so, what made you change your plans?

I think many businesses ignore the value of professional management and this creates gaps between top companies and everyone else. Every company has a manager, but relative few have thorough training and experience mirrored in theory. I would not change what I do, but mainly how I do it for the benefit of my team and company stakeholders.

What was your biggest professional/personal success?

There is no one point in time, rather a coherent succession of small-scale decisions following a plan. I always wanted to be in charge of my time and every opportunity I engaged with had this strict rule of being able to manage my own time. I think working with large teams for a politically and socially challenging project that eventually turned into a large-scale movement, I could consider a pivotal point in both my professional and personal development.

What was your biggest challenge? What was your biggest professional mistake (from which you learned a lot)?

My biggest mistake was having too much trust without written agreements with the parties and entities I was involved with. That was a rookie mistake that has shaped my professional relationships ever since.

Which 3 most important experiences in your life have led you to where you are right now?

Moving over 30 times in my life, starting over 2 times and having great friends.

When you think of the most talented high potential in your company, what 3 pieces of advice would you give him to live a successful and fulfilling life?

Be thorough in what you do, leave no room for interpretation and always stick to the agreed plan.

Using just 5 words, how would your team describe you as a leader?

Creative, Curious, Caring, Concise, Careful

What has changed in your career because of your MBA degree? How did the program support you in reaching your career goals? What concrete career opportunities have opened up for you?

I brushed up my economics and business administration notions and discovered new knowledge. The MBA provided a boost in my planning and coherence for the project I currently work on, that is creating the basic infrastructure for digital (and hopefully autonomous) management.

As far as the workload is concerned, how did you manage an MBA next to a demanding job and your family life?

I think for my situation, the pandemic created a benefit that I used to the fullest. As there were no distractions like traveling, going out and having dinner parties, the focus was divided in 3: family, work and MBA.

What do you consider a “great luxury”?

Time. Anything else can be found, gathered, and improved.

What was the last book/movie you really enjoyed?

The Age of Surveillance Capitalism by Shoshana Zuboff. It discusses future in a practical manner related to our digital personas that few of us truly protect or are aware of. I highly recommend it, as it is a good starting point in thinking about how we will cope with the digital personas we and our children (already) will have. Bonus: Mary Aiken, The Cyber Effect – on cyberpsycology.

If you could change places with anyone for a day, who would it be?

A 12 year old between the tropics in Africa. If a major social change will come, I believe there are the seeds right now.


I can laugh about:
Shortcomings I am most likely willing to overlook:
Mistakes generated while trying
My funniest/most exciting travel experience was:
Sout Iran. Nothing the internet says is true
I could not survive without this smartphone app:
My fridge is always stocked with:
Cheese and jam
I would spend my last money on:
Going into space
Ten years ago, I thought:
Ten years is a long time
Today, I know:
This is false

Read more interesting career stories of our students and graduates here.

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