IBM Champions demonstrate both expertise in and extraordinary support and advocacy for IBM technology, communities, and solutions. The IBM Champion program recognizes these innovative thought leaders in the technical community and rewards these contributions by amplifying their voice and increasing their sphere of influence.
Gregor Frimodt-Møller became an IBM Champion earlier this year, and it's been my pleasure to get to know him over the ensuing months. In 1998, he co-founded any.cloud, a Danish multi-cloud service provider with a special focus on security, digital fraud and business continuity. Read on to learn more about Gregor and his perspective on being an IBM Champion.
How long have you been an IBM Champion?
I was appointed an IBM Champion in January 2020, so it's all still quite new.
What does it mean to you to be an IBM Champion?
I was very honoured to receive this distinction because I have been working hard to achieve the quality we deliver through IBM, although none of it would have been made possible without my even more hardworking team. I share my Champion title with them 😊
What are you most looking forward to as an IBM Champion this year?
Being an IBM Champion offers a world of opportunities, and one of my favourite aspects is the chance to connect with others and learn from how they do what they excel in. Since being a Champion is new for me, I will try my best to get to know the community.
What advice do you have for someone who wants to become an IBM Champion?
I always give two pieces of advice:
- Keep it simple. Make sure the products you work on and bring to market are as simple as possible, even though they are likely extremely complex under the hood.
- Maintain consistency. Being consistent at everything you do will eventually lead to success. Even if you doubt you have chosen the right path, consistency will be the only real distinction between success and failure. Therefore it's the best foundation for making a different choice if you see your consistent efforts are not working. And if you recognize that excellence is practically always the result of a team effort, you will always be a champion – even without the formal recognition of a dedicated programme.
What do you like best about the IBM Champion program?
The chance to connect with peers. The wonderful thing about learning from others is that you don’t even have to be in the exact same line of business to get great takeaways from meeting other IBM Champions.
What technology trends are you currently most excited about?
At any.cloud we work with IBM Security, and specifically Trusteer, on a security software called ReTrust, which is one of our 3 strategic business lines. You can learn more by visiting https://retrust.global or reading this blog I wrote earlier in the year.
What kind of things are you working on at the moment?
The global pandemic and work-from-home reality has made a lot of changes for us, and we are in the process of optimizing and looking into what learnings we made during the past period of time and how we can come out of this situation stronger.
I believe that a combination of working from home and being at the office will be a lasting thing for us, although my main focus is that it does not take a toll on the social culture of any.cloud. Socializing and seeing each other in real life is a fundamental part of life and should be treasured. And fortunately, I am an optimist by nature, so any challenge will lead me to work out the best of the situation.
What is the best thing about working in cybersecurity?
I love the fact that my team and I play a very active role in fighting cybercrime. We are on a mission to create a frictionless and safe digital journey for consumers, as security in my eyes has become way too complex for consumers. I try to make a difference in how security is enabled and do so by taking responsibility away from consumers and placing it back to where it belongs – the application layer.
What I particularly like is how elements from a business context have consequences right down to a level that everyone can understand and relate to. An example of that would be how we fight fraudulent password sharing to stop non-eligible users from feeding on the privileges of true and approved users. And when we're most successful our efforts are completely invisible to the consumer. We protect them from bad actors – and sometimes even from themselves.
What advice would you give someone who's looking to start a career in cybersecurity?
Look, learn, and listen. And most of all: Realize that relationships are most important. People deal with people. Security is about trust. If you don’t know anyone and are new in the field, get started, attend the events that are meaningful for your interest and inspiration and get to know people. Working together, teams can move mountains! Look to the people who are experts at what you want to do. Most knowledgeable people will be keen to share their expertise. Don’t be scared if you are not an expert from the beginning, nobody is!
What contribution to the technical community are you most proud of this year?
I am really proud of how we at any.cloud have taken the IBM Security Trusteer solution and helped make it available to businesses of all shapes and sizes. A company the size of IBM joining forces with any.cloud and also awarding us with the Excellence Award as most innovative Business Partner in EU – this means the world to me and my team. It also means that IBM and any.cloud both amplify each other and reach customers that we would not have reached on our own.
What is your next act as an IBM Champion going to be?
I haven’t really decided yet, but I am hoping that a period of R&R this summer will take me to where ideas and initiatives will appear. I find that time off gives me time to reflect and then I get my best ideas.
Anything else you’d like to share?
I certainly don’t want to miss this opportunity to thank you for making me a part of this community and to wish you all a great summer. I also hope to meet some of you in real life someday on the other side!
A big thank you to Gregor for providing such insightful answers! If you’re interested in connecting further with him, feel free to connect with him on LinkedIn or leave any questions and comments below.
We also invite you to read more IBM Champions in Action profiles or learn more about the program.