It’s Katie’s turn in the spotlight this month. Here she shares the role communications can play in driving tech sector change, the need for energy in our business, and what journalists REALLY think about Vapour…
How did you first get into the world of tech?
I come from the comms side of tech and started out in the industry in 2006. I worked for a PR agency with a varied client base, at the time, but naturally gravitated towards the ‘geekier’ of businesses. These were the stories I found the most thought-provoking, especially if you could debunk the jargon and relate to stakeholders at any level. In 2013, I left to focus solely on technical communications – and ‘ta dah’, here I am at Vapour.
And what is your earliest memory of tech in your life?
I had a rainbow-coloured kids’ typewriter, not long after I could walk. As I grew up, I advanced to a PC, practically the size of our dining table!
What’s the one quality you need to thrive in this environment (especially at Vapour)?
One is hard, as there are lots of values that differentiate Vapour in a crowded tech space. But I’d probably say energy. The pace of innovation is fast, and the appetite to solve customers’ challenges never stops. This is in the DNA of the whole team, not just the CEO, which means there’s always something to talk about. This energy keeps us all moving forward.
And what is the one thing you would change about the tech sector?
The perception that all suppliers exploit how complex it is. This view suggests dishonesty or a lack of transparency – and don’t get me wrong, some companies will take advantage of how ‘green’ customers can be. But that’s not Vapour – and I’m sure there are other companies equally passionate about banishing this misconception. Yes, it’s complicated sometimes, but there’s always a way to explain it, honestly and respectfully so that everyone in the room can make informed decisions.
Why do you think Vapour stands out in the channel?
I am genuinely proud of the Vapour brand. I don’t just mean the logo (although it’s cool, right?) I mean the reputation Vapour has carved for itself, despite not being the biggest player – we’re not nestled in a city centre tech district either. But I spoke to a journalist the other day and he said: “I used to think you punched above your weight – and I admired Vapour for that. Now I realise you rightfully have a seat at the table.”
Quite often, it’s Vapour bringing new innovations to market, and word is continually spreading – especially because we’re so human in our approach. And I’m on a mission to keep telling that story, so more people know it!
Complete the sentences:
The best piece of tech ever invented is... any device to play music – I couldn’t be without it.
The next purchase on my (personal) tech wishlist is... probably a kiddy gadget – I’m a mum of two girls under four, so let’s face it, practically every penny goes on them. One thing I’d love someone to invent, is a savvy device that knows what I’m thinking and types it up for me. If someone could please let me know if it already exists, that’d be great!
A tech firm that has really stood out for me in the last 12 months is... Champion Health – a digital employee wellbeing platform.
The biggest misconception in the channel is that... it’s all smoke and mirrors. Let’s have more conversations that everyone can understand – that’s when businesses will rightfully get excited about what tech can do.
By the end of 2022, our tech will have made organisations far more... efficient. Whether that’s in terms of collaborating with colleagues, moving traffic securely around the network, or automating even the simplest of processes to free up the time of their workforce.