Emtelle, the leading manufacturer of blown fibre and ducted network solutions, delves further into the people behind the company and it’s success.
From line operators to SHEQ engineers, from internal customer service representatives to external sales managers, from marketing to technical, from finance to purchasing, from the UK to the other side of the world, the global leader Emtelle employs over 450 employees globally.
We interview Scott Modha, International Business Development Manager for Emtelle, responsible for sales in the central projects team that covers Asia, Africa, America & Canada – on his background within the FTTx industry and what his role within Emtelle involves.
What encouraged you to work for Emtelle?
I had experience with working with Emtelle products during my time at BT from 2004 to 2012. During my first couple of years away from BT I worked as a supplier of some of the additional materials that Emtelle buy and sell. I was attracted by the quality and innovation of the products that Emtelle made and the way that they engaged with their customers. This was something that I wanted to be a part of to help further my knowledge and develop my sales skills, and Emtelle was the place to do it. Three and a half years later and the role at Emtelle is just as interesting as ever!
What does being “International Business Development Manager” within Emtelle involve?
The good thing is that I never have a “typical” day. My customer base stretches as far as South Africa, up to Egypt and the Middle East into Southern Europe and all the way into North America and Canada. This means that on a day to day basis I am in regular contact with my existing customer base and sales representatives, as well as looking to engage with new customers and projects within these territories.
What aspects of International Business Development do you like?
I like how varied things are, there are never two days that are the same. My customers rely on me and my knowledge to help them deploy fibre in various projects which involves problem solving, innovation and often the ability to do the same job in a number of different styles. This is something that has always interested me! The fact that I get to see lots of different places all over the world is also great.
What aspects of International Business Development do you find most challenging?
One thing that took a while to get used to is the different ways that people do business in different countries. There is never a single way to approach or engage with a customer and you have to adapt and adjust how you do business depending on where you are. Time zones and making time to be in contact with customers ahead and behind of the UK time zone is just as challenging.
What enticed you to move in to external sales and sales development from working with BT as a Fibre Optics Installer and Spicer doing product installs?
I had spent 8 years working for BT as an installer, providing fibre to businesses all over the City of London. I had learnt some fantastic skills and knowledge during busy and stressful times such as the Olympics in 2012 and throughout several upgrade projects that I worked on. Shortly after finishing a project providing fibre backbone for the Olympics park (coincidentally using Emtelle products!) I decided that I wanted to take on a new challenge, one which I could use my hands-on experience to offer reliable and complete advice to my customers. This is when I moved into a sales position. Having these hands-on skills gives me kudos and an advantage when speaking at a technical level with all of my customers today.
What opportunities has your role in Emtelle enabled you to do?
Working for Emtelle has enabled me to further my knowledge on FTTx and FTTH networks to the stage where I have a much more complete understanding of different network topologies, active and passive equipment as well as the different civils practices that projects in different countries require. My role at Emtelle has given me exposure to clients at varying levels and in companies all over the world which has further broadened my commercial and technical skills.
What differences have you encountered between UK sales and international sales?
I think the best analogy I can think of is “Just because it is done like that in the UK, doesn’t mean we do it in the same way!”
Many countries have specifications and standards, and indeed labour force that install in ways that are a world apart from how things are done in the UK. A vital part of working internationally is the ability to understand this and adapt your approach, both technically and commercially to ensure you do not alienate yourself from the people you are meeting.
What are your next steps within your role?
I would like to continue my work at Emtelle to the stage where I one day have the business at a level to have additional staff, and to manage and work with them to grow the business further.
What’s your favourite Emtelle product to date and why?
My favourite product to date is Emtelle QWK-Link. A pre terminated blowable drop fibre that needs no splicing and very little skill to install means it is transferrable across all of the markets I work in, and the feedback I often get from new customers is just as encouraging as how I feel when I speak about it!
What Emtelle products work well in your regions and why?
Emtelle’s RTRYVA range of products seem to be universally accepted for the cost and time savings that the product brings when being installed in both an internal and external network. We have had great success with this product in Africa, where many thousands of kilometres have been installed to date. Here, the interest for the product seems stronger than ever. As well as this, the air blown fibre range of products are slowly being more and more accepted within the North American market, where traditionally very little blown fibre was used. New Customers are now realising the benefits of installing a micro/blown fibre network more and more. This is giving them the ability to connect or pass homes quicker, when combining this technology with some of the cost and time saving civils works such as micro trenching.
Thanks to Scott for taking time out of his busy Emtelle schedule to take part in this interview, educating us what International Business Development within Emtelle involves.
If you would like to get in touch with Scott, please contact him here