Our Chief Product Officer, Martin Søndergaard, has been employed at CapaSystems for more than 20 years — and he is truly what we can call a ‘company man’. We are pleased to be able to pay this tribute to Martin. After all, he has CapaSystems in his very DNA.
Martin Søndergaard has gone a long way since he graduated in computer science at CapaSystems in the year 2000. With more than 15 years of experience as IT consultant and specialist in Client and Desktop Management, Martin is one of our employees who has an extensive know-how of client communications, identifying client needs and, in particular, of jointly figuring out the best solution.
But as years go by, everything ultimately comes to an end, and so Martin ended his career as a consultant five years ago, when the urge to try something new and challenging became overpowering. And this was the pistol shot that marked the day he started in the position he is still holding nowadays, more exactly, our Chief Product Officer.
So who is the man behind this lofty title of Chief Product Officer? In two words, he is a person who loves tinkering — and in particular, tinkering and working out things others think are difficult. Quite simply, he is not the kind of person who would back away from a challenge.
But let us take a look at how Martin Søndergaard unassumingly describes himself:
“Well, you see, I am simply Martin. I live in Hillerød with my wife Camilla, whom I have been married to for 15 years, and we have two boys aged 10 and 12 years. And I play paddle tennis and golf in my spare time.”
Geek all the way down to his DNA
In addition to being a family man, Martin is also a person with a wide range of constantly changing hobbies that range far and wide. He has formerly done track racing in Europe, but after his wife and boys came along, there was no longer time for this sort of thing, and so motorcycle racing gave way to skiing.
In the course of the last two years, Martin has gone crazy about paddle tennis, and this is a sport he practises all the time. In his own words, he is absolutely mad about it.
And it is here that being a geek comes into the picture, as how do you make that switch from motorcycle racing to sweating on a tennis court?
“I have no idea why, but paddle tennis is super cool, challenging and different. It is easy to start, but difficult to master.”
And this is what Martin likes to do with most things. And since he is a sucker for trying new things out, there are periods in his life where he immerses himself in one or another one of his hobbies.
He has previously gone through a ‘sauce period’, where he was mastering French sauces, and which did not end until he was able to make them all by heart. Martin’s latest project has been pizza baking, where he has been experimenting with the water percentage in pizza dough, in the hope of baking the perfect pizza base.
“In other words, I am always occupied with something new. Right now, it is, in fact, pizza dough, which — admittedly — sounds daft. I am playing with the water percentage in the dough so I can achieve the most fabulous pizza base.”
The propensity for investing lots of hours in something that interests him is also an ability Martin carries over to his daily work life, for the purpose of improving his skill set.
Solutions meant to last long
Thus, Martin’s geekiness is also reflected in his work when something new comes along. He begins to explore things that others would probably abandon and keeps on with them until he is sure he has figured them all out. It is then and only then that he sends his work over to his colleagues. Then, he embarks on his next project.
But Martin Søndergaard is also making sure to give priority to the right tasks, so his clients are presented with the best solutions and are not disgruntled about the product they get.
This means that Martin sets the bar high for all of his deliverables and makes sure that the rest of his department do not take their eyes off the prize and keep looking ahead.
“Every day I say no to well over 3,000 things requested by our clients and consultants. This is something that I have to do if I am to make headway with our projects. This is why I need to be able to navigate, prioritize and stick for what we are doing.”
Therefore, Martin spends lots of time looking ahead. He has a clear idea of the direction the product portfolio should take so that the department can deliver the best solutions to its clients going forward.
“What is my objective now is to see if we can refine our entire product range in such a way as to better fit the decade we are entering. We are hard at work on upgrading our products to new heights, yet also on modifying our approach to customer solutions to individual, more finished products.”
Even though Martin is unassuming, we can say many good things about him, and what we can always safely lean on is his ability to learn new things, even if he does not master everything at once.