Leadership Q&A: Shane Coffey Talks Device Security and What Keeps Him Grounded
At Sharp, we’re always looking for ways to help you think “simply smarter.” So we thought it would be a great idea to feature our leaders on the Simply Smarter blog to get an inside look at what they are working on and their views on the office technology space at large, while learning some fun facts about them too! Today, we’re interviewing Shane Coffey, vice president, product management. We hope you enjoy getting to know Shane.
Sharp: Tell us a bit about your role at Sharp and your day-to-day responsibilities.
Shane: I lead a team of product managers who work to provide products to meet the needs and opportunities of an ever-changing B2B market. We utilize a combination of hardware, software and services to enhance productivity and add value to our customers.
Sharp: What is a typical workday for you?
Shane: Nowadays, because many of us are working remotely, I often find myself in a lot of virtual meetings with my peers, direct reports and my management. My daily responsibilities are long-term. For instance, bringing a product to market is not something you do in a day. Daily activities are part of a longer arc to develop and launch new products and services for the business. They involve overseeing the development of business plans and strategies, marketing materials and pricing for new products.
Sharp: Walk us through some of the priority projects you’re working on right now.
Shane: Right now, we have been working on continuously diversifying our product portfolio to facilitate the varied requirements of our channel customers. We are trying to stay as nimble as possible to meet their needs for a work from home space or a hybrid office environment. These needs have brought us opportunities to provide new product categories, such as laptops, desktop monitors and an expanded line of desktop printers and multifunction devices. Tying these all together is our Synappx™ software platform which facilitates the easy transition from the remote work environment to the office work environment.
Sharp: How has the pandemic specifically impacted your work?
Shane: Due to the pandemic, many people are working remotely, so even if you are in the office, someone else might not be. Because every conversation now has to be scheduled, time management has become more important than ever for me.
You can lose a lot of time looking at emails, so I make it a habit to schedule separate times to focus, for answering emails and to hold meetings.
Sharp: What do you see as the future of IOT-empowered B2B products?
Shane: It does look like the hybrid office is likely here to stay. People will need to have the ability to work from anywhere, whether they are at home, in the office or somewhere else. And those workers will need to have the capacity for collaboration wherever they go. Because of this, they will need to have the same capabilities, no matter the environment. This means not only having the right applications and hardware, but also effective software services and security. When you are not behind the firewall, you need to find a new way to be secure.
Sharp: Cybersecurity is still a major concern for businesses. What can OEMs do to address the growing cyber threats?
Shane: Sharp printers and copiers were the first to get certified on the Common Criterial International Standard. We continue to be an industry leader in device security and specific features, such as whitelisting and protecting customer data by automatically wiping the hard drive after the lease is up. This is standard for us. My advice to OEMs is to make security a priority, like we have. Cyberthreats are only going to increase, whether we are in the middle of a pandemic or not, and it is important that consumers know that they can trust their products to keep their company’s information safe.
Sharp: Outside of work, what activities did you pick up during the pandemic to help keep you grounded?
Shane: I love music and have played more guitar than ever before. I have a very eclectic style – from jazz, to classical to blues to rock and roll and I like learning new techniques and styles. My family and I are also binge watching more shows and doing more outdoor activities. Since it has not been safe to get together with friends and family indoors, we try to responsibly socialize outdoors. We are also cooking at home a lot more and have started learning to do different types of cooking – from Korean BBQ to tapas style dishes. I am also finding that daily exercise is very important now. When working from home, it is very easy to lose track of time and spend much of the day sitting in front of a computer. At the end of a workday, if I haven’t moved, I make a conscious effort to get some exercise, even if it’s just a 20 to 30-minute power walk.
Sharp: What activities are you most looking forward to picking up again post-pandemic?
Shane: The ability to socialize personally with people is what I miss the most – and certainly visiting my family. I have family in Ireland that I haven’t seen during the pandemic. My mother is 92, so I am looking forward to visiting her and my extensive family when it is once again safe to do so.