Roger Sueess is the CEO of Green Datacenter, a Switzerland-based company providing data centres and colocation services. “I started back in the day doing a computer science and electrical engineering baccalaureate at university. My background in development, starting as a consultant and freelancing, was quite helpful because I started to learn how to leave an impact on people. I spent around 20 years within the banking industry in different roles, at two of the biggest Swiss banks. And then last year I joined Green as CEO.”
Sueess credits his experience in the banking industry as well preparing him for his current role. “My time at the banks helped a lot, whether it was as CTO or Global Head of Engineering, which operated almost as a mini company within a company. There was also the whole business engagement with regards to adopting the cloud and so forth. Having had that, as well as the chance to work abroad in New York, Seattle, Vancouver and all across Europe, was quite helpful to the role now.”
Sueess’s approach to leadership is characterised by trust in his employees. “I try to have a very collaborative, open, transparent leadership style. It’s about trying to create the space for my directs and so forth to thrive.” The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has not altered this approach, instead clarifying its necessity. “We've seen in these challenging times the importance of having a sound corporate culture based on trust. We’ve had to give quite a long leash to people to keep the business running as if nothing had happened and that’s worked out.”
That’s not to say that there’s any complacency in Sueess’s approach, with some elements, such as communication, requiring more attention in these trying times. “What changes is that you have to be a bit more precise and a bit more frequent with those channels to keep people engaged and to make sure you’re understanding each other. We’re clearly losing at least some of the dimensions of communication. The video stuff helps a lot, but you do lose that closeness.” For a midsize company, maintaining that closeness is even more imperative. “At smaller companies the decision path is very short, very direct. With people working from home, you just have to pay your people more attention and make sure that they're all understanding what's going on.”
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