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60 seconds with…Mike Nelson, Senior Vice President, PFU (EMEA)

What’s currently having the greatest impact on your business?
Regulation is one of the biggest drivers of our business, particularly when it comes to processing and protecting information. We help our customers to comply with the regulations in their industries. We’ve seen a growth in demand in recent months as so many companies are operating with their staff working from home. It is estimated that 80 per cent of data is still stored in paper form, and we help customers to manage, process and critically understand that information, all while remaining compliant.

Where do you see the next big opportunity?
Identity capture is a big opportunity for us. For example, we have worked with several healthcare providers, helping them to quickly and accurately check identities using our specialist passport and identity scanner – the fi-800R. In the new world we’re now working in, tracing people and checking their identification as they move through a health system will become more important.

What would make your day job easier?
Ideally a teleporting system so I could visit all our teams throughout EMEA without wasting precious time travelling. Failing that, better video conferencing tools would make a real difference to my day job. We use Skype quite a lot across our business, but despite it working well most of the time, it’s not yet a substitute for face-to-face meetings. It is just not the same as sitting across from someone. You can’t read body language as easily or pick up on other non-verbal communication.

What’s the best bit of business advice you’ve been given?
It’s not quite business advice, more about behaviour, but I worked for someone who taught me a really valuable management skill. As a manager you don’t necessarily need to know how to do every job, you simply need to have faith in your team’s ability and support them in that.

If you had had a crystal ball, would you have done anything differently?
Trusting my instinct more. There’s been several occasions I can think of in my career where I haven’t. My view now is if I have a gut feeling, I should go with that. For one, it will remove any procrastination on my part which would slow the implementation down.

What was your first job?
I was a milkman.

What would be your dream job?
I would love to own and manage a piece of woodland. My retirement ambition is to offset my own carbon footprint from my business travel by giving back to the environment.

Fine dining and good wine, or curry and a pint?
I can enjoy either – but I really appreciate fine dining.

Money’s not an issue, what’s your perfect car… and where would you like to drive it?
We recently held a gala dinner following our eighth Information Capture Conference at Classic Remise – a classic car storage facility in Berlin, where I could see a wide variety of incredible cars. Looking at the cars is one thing, but to drive I’d go for something electric, and drive it as little as possible.

Favourite holiday destination?
Skiing – I’ve skied all over the world but not in Japan – I have visited Japan more than 80 times but never skied there, so I’d love to do that at some point.

How do you like to spend your spare time?
Working on my house and garden is what I really enjoy doing. My current project is digging a pond.