Q&A with Calabrio’s New Chief Executive Officer, Kevin Jones | Calabrio
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Q&A with Calabrio’s New Chief Executive Officer, Kevin Jones

New Calabrio CEO, Kevin Jones, has joined Calabrio bringing with him over 30 years of experience in the technology industry and a proven track record for driving business transformation. With his first week officially in the books, Kevin joins Calabrio’s Chief Human Resource officer, Kristen Gaarder, to share insight into his personal leadership style and why he chose Calabrio.

Kristin: How has your background and past work experience prepared you for the role of Calabrio CEO?

Kevin: It’s serendipitous how so much of my professional experience has paralleled Calabrio’s journey. While working in the tech industry over the past thirty years, I’ve worked overseas in both EMEA and APAC, spent a decade in cloud technology, and have even run a contact center. These experiences have given me firsthand insight into our customers’ needs, desires, and struggles.

Calabrio is a company with an amazing growth trajectory, and I believe my successful track record driving significant business transformation in previous roles has me well suited to shepherd Calabrio into its next phase of growth. At Rackspace Technology, I led a team that grew the company from $2 billion to $3 billion in annual revenue by building and scaling a public cloud business, introducing new products, and expanding geographically.

So yes, I am confident that my background and previous experiences have me set up to drive success for both our customers and Calabrio.

Kristin: So, you’re a great fit for Calabrio, but what sparked your interest in Calabrio?

Kevin: There were so many reasons I was immediately interested in joining Calabrio. First and foremost, I believe Calabrio ONE is by far the best and most impactful product in the industry. With our incredible customer-centric culture, workforce performance suite, and true-cloud offering, Calabrio ONE is the trusted ally contact centers use to maximize agent performance, exceed customer expectations, and boost workforce efficacy.

Additionally, I would describe myself as a growth-oriented leader. When I looked at Calabrio, I was both impressed by its tremendous evolution over the past 15 years and energized by the prospect of future expansion in the marketplace. I am excited to take my unique expertise and usher Calabrio to our next pinnacle of growth.

Kristin: You mentioned our customer-centric culture as a reason why you joined Calabrio. How big of an impact does this culture have on the success of the business?

Kevin: I strongly believe a successful company is a customer-centric, customer-first company. Calabrio has set the precedence as a team motivated by ensuring customers’ triumph.

From our product design to how our solutions elevate our customers’ operations, to the way we continuously innovate for them and fully support them during, and after implementation, Calabrio has done an amazing job of supporting customers at every step. It’s clear this is a product made for not only immediate results, but the ability to scale with a customer’s ever-changing growth initiatives.

Kristin: How would you describe your leadership philosophy?

Kevin: My philosophy centers around empowering the team and believing that everyone is a leader. Here at Calabrio, team members don’t need to have a management job title to be a leader. Instead, I want everyone to feel encouraged to bring new ideas and make positive changes to the company and product. While working here, I aim to inspire everyone to lead some part of the company in their own way. I also want Calabrians to feel emboldened to take risks, to try, to succeed, even to fail, and to try again.

Kristin: Speaking of leadership, what are some attributes you feel make an excellent leader?

Kevin: To me, a great leader takes responsibility, executes initiatives, and is customer focused, collaborative, and transparent. These attributes are not only what I look for in my team, but work to embody myself, as someone who will lead by example. I believe our Calabrians are already incredible leaders, and I look forward to learning from them as well.

Kristin: Let’s wrap up on a fun one. Minnesotans always talk about how amazing the state is, what are your first impressions of Minnesota and the Twin Cities?

Kevin: Even being from the east coast, I have to say Minneapolis really takes winter to a new level! I’ve never seen snow like this! I feel as if I’m at the North Pole or something, but I am excited to take up new winter sports and am ready to invest in some sturdy winter boots.

Also, every Calabrian I met yesterday was so kind and welcoming. It makes me excited to meet with even more of the team around the globe.

Kristin: Thank you Kevin, for taking the time to speak with me and share an inside look at what we can expect from you as our leader. I speak for all Calabrians when I say welcome. We’re excited to see where we grow as a company with you at the helm.

Kristin Gaarder, Calabrio’s Chief Human Resources Officer, is an international human resources executive who creates business value through an engaged employee population. She empowers people to realize their greatest potential and to maximize their opportunities. Kristin focuses on results and works to propel organizations forward by leveraging the strengths of everyone on the team. Prior to joining Calabrio, Kristin was the SVP Human Resources & Corporate Services for Amplifon and previously was the General Manager of Nilfisk High Pressure Washers while also serving as VP of Human Resources. She is a board member of the HR Executive Forum and is recognized as a Top Woman Leader in Minnesota. Kristin holds a master’s degree in Human Resources & Labor Relations from the University of Wisconsin.
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