Brendan Maree of Interactive Intelligence: 'Different people bring different skill sets and should be valued for the individual breadth of talent they contribute.' Name: Brendan Maree Title: Senior Vice President, Australia, New Zealand and Japan, Interactive Intelligence Twitter handle: @bjmaree How long have you been in your current role? Five months but I have worked at Interactive Intelligence in various regional sales and management positions for nine years. What business technology issue is your organisation focusing on? Interactive Intelligence is a global provider of customer engagement, unified communications and collaboration software and cloud services that help businesses improve service, increase productivity and reduce costs. In the contact centre space, our customers are adopting new technologies to keep up with the ever changing demands of how consumers choose to interact with a business. Our solutions can quickly deliver highly reliable, scalable and innovative multichannel applications, thereby enhancing the customer experience and offering managers data and insights to make the right business decisions. What are your interests away from work? Triathlon and music production. I also participate every year in the MS Sydney to the Gong Ride and my goal this year is to raise over $5000. What's the best piece of advice you've ever received? Never expect everyone to have the same high expectations as you do. Different people bring different skill sets and should be valued for the individual breadth of talent they contribute. Transparency, openness and opportunities to work collaboratively with customers and colleagues, while being recognised and rewarded for individual contribution supports driving an innovative culture.Brendan Maree, Interactive Intelligence Professionally, who do you admire most? People who came from nothing, took a risk and built a thriving business. How long have you been working in IT? How did you get into IT? I have worked in IT for 15 years. I was previously in the Royal Australian Navy where I was a service engineer. I then branched out into the IT industry initially working with a Japan-headquartered company specialising in test and measurement before working in mobile telephony infrastructure and unified communications. If you weren't working in IT, what would you be doing? I would either work in stockbroking as I love taking calculated risks or I would be the number 10 jersey in the Manchester United team who I have been supporting since 1978. Can you share a key pointer for fostering an innovative culture in the organisation? Transparency, openness and opportunities to work collaboratively with customers and colleagues, while being recognised and rewarded for individual contribution supports driving an innovative culture. ...A key pointer for building a diverse team? We recruit people into the business not just for the specific skills they can bring to the immediate job at hand but also for the experience they may have achieved both within the IT and wider business market both in Australia\/New Zealand and from around the world. We believe that our star-power customers also help attract great talent to the business while we offer employees the opportunity to work on some of the most complex and challenging customer engagement and Unified Communications and collaboration deployments. Training and development opportunities are also a drawcard for attracting different employees enabling them to build business skills, client relationships and leadership capabilities. Ultimately, we look for intelligent and persuasive team players who are also strong team builders.Send news tips and comments to firstname.lastname@example.orgFollow Divina Paredes on Twitter: @divinapFollow CIO New Zealand on Twitter:@cio_nzSign up for CIO newsletters for regular updates on CIO news, views and events.Join\nus on Facebook.