#MyLifeAtSoftcat - John Gladstone, Sustainability Lead
Tell us about yourself?
I have been in IT since I was 15, I started by selling computers for Evesham Micros (if anyone remembers them!), then I went off to university and got a degree in ‘Advanced Computer Networks’. My first job out of university was in Digital Forensics, but after a short while moved into a network support role for an IT reseller on customer site. I then moved to a services business where we supplied new, second user IT solutions and services to the likes of Airbus. That company was then acquired by Avent 2012, and I joined the world of distribution.
In 2015 after working with Softcat, I decided to finally join the company where my first task was to deliver a large project for one of our major customers. Once that was complete, I concentrated on building the logistics and lifecycle business (now known as Supply Chain Services), before finally making the full-time transition into my Sustainability role in 2021.
What is your role?
My role now is ‘Sustainability Lead’ and my general day to day consists of working across the business to ensure we are being sustainable where we can and working on the areas where we are not. My current focus is to continue to develop Softcat’s Net Zero plan over the coming years, as well building Softcat’s commercial offering to take to its customers. There is a huge opportunity for sales to take sustainability on and assist our customers on their journey, helping them to adopt a greener IT estate and supply chain. Soon it will be a necessity to not only be sustainable as a business, but to also offer a fully sustainable portfolio.
What drew you to apply for Softcat?
When I joined Softcat in 2015 it had a great reputation, when I visited it always looked like so much fun and the people in the business were so motivated to succeed. It was something I had never seen before in any of the companies I had worked for or with. I obviously wanted to become a part of the team, and I hoped I could take my experience and knowledge, and build something to add even more value for the Softcat customer.
How would you describe the Softcat culture?
The Softcat culture really is different – there is a drive for people to succeed which in turn makes Softcat succeed. I love how when you look at how Softcat employees interact and socialise, you can see how we are one big family.
Your role is focused on sustainability, what has been your proudest achievement?
I think there are a couple – the first is winning the two CRN awards in 2021. In short, we had only really been working on sustainability for a relatively short time and to win major awards in the first year was something that ‘we’, the team, should be proud of. I think the second is simply the ongoing work we are doing across the business – the ‘Green Revolution’ is such a huge opportunity for everyone in many ways and to see the adoption from colleagues and customers in the past 12 months is fantastic.
Do you have any tips you would like to share with aspiring Softcatters?
I am a firm believer in hard work! If you work hard, make the effort, and put the hours in, the rewards will come. There has never been a job too low and if you help people, that help will always come back to you at some point. The only other offer of advice would be work smart and be organised – something I always trying to be better at.