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Andy Hall, Centare

IB’s Professional of the Week is the premier way to meet Dane County’s professionals. This week features Andy Hall, director of consulting, Centare.

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1. What are the most challenging and rewarding aspects of your job and why?

There’s a lot of volatility nowadays in custom software development and agile business services. The key is how to build that offering along with growing a company. It can be a delicate balance and is often front of mind. Second to that is strengthening our brand to ensure that we are considered a trusted partner and thought leaders in the business community. We can do that well if we hire the right people that complement our company culture and are great with clients. This is extremely important for Centare.

2. Who do you look up to or admire in business and why?

I admire people like Dave Glyzewski, the founder and former president and CEO of Centare. Dave showed me what a business must do to be successful: maintain a good balance between caring for your people and delivering great service to your customers.

Business magnate, philanthropist, and founder of Virgin Airways Richard Branson is another key influence. A quote of his sticks with me — “It’s impossible for them, but not for you.”

Before former U.S. President Harry Truman was in high office, he failed, narrowly avoiding bankruptcy before going into politics. His story taught me that the only thing preventing success is you. Take risks. If you don’t make it, try again.

3. What has been the high point of your career so far?

Twenty years ago when I started in IT I envisioned myself one day working for a great company and being an integral part of its leadership. It’s incredibly rewarding to achieve something that you set out to accomplish so many years ago.

4. Thinking back on your career, what advice would you give your 21-year-old self?

Early in my career I was the prototypical software developer. I thought the main goal in my career was to work on cool things, make a lot of money, and work hard to reach the next level. I really didn’t value the professional relationships I was making along the way, and didn’t realize how critical they could be to a successful career.

Here’s a short list of things that I would tell my younger self:

  • Interact with people. Build and nuture professional relationships.
  • Never stop learning. Try something you’ve never done before.
  • Don’t be afraid to roll up your sleeves and help with a solution.
  • Don’t ask someone to do something that you wouldn’t do yourself.

(Continued)

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