In May 2022, Fortimize will celebrate our 10th anniversary. It’s a huge milestone from what started as an idea borne out of the financial services industry: that technology could unlock more powerful relationships between bankers, wealth and asset managers, and real estate firms with their customers.
So it’s with great excitement that we begin the next phase of our growth journey as we announce our first President to lead the company with our founder and CEO, John Hamon. For those who know us, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that we’ve cultivated and grown this role from within.
Danny Varghese–who for the past two-and-half years has re-shaped our delivery and professional services organization–will now lead Fortimize as President, overseeing our people and client experiences. We’ll hear from Danny directly, in a moment.
With Danny’s elevation and focus on people and client experience, comes a refined, entrepreneurial role for John, who will still be deeply embedded in the day-to-day operations of Fortimize. John’s focus will be dialed in to corporate strategy–overseeing Marketing, Partnerships and financial programs and planning.
We couldn’t be more thrilled to announce Danny’s appointment. So let’s hear directly from Danny with a bit of Q&A!
What excites you most about shaping the role of President at Fortimize?
It’s about two types of opportunities: (1) for our people, and (2) for our clients. Fortimize today is in the epicenter of two dynamic and exciting ecosystems–with Salesforce and the financial services industry.
For our people we’ll be focused on how they can be recognized and rewarded for their work (be seen and known) and how they can grow in their careers. As we continue to execute with excellence as an employee-owned company, this creates growth for our folks to support their families and be generous in their communities.
I believe our clients should feel like they are our most important client. I think about the end-to-end experience we want to create for them, and there is so much opportunity for us to partner with and guide them to better serve their customers. Innovation is at the heart of modern relationships financial institutions have with the customers, and Fortimize is uniquely positioned to help them unlock this opportunity to better serve their employees and customers.
Stepping back in time a bit, you’ve got over 20 years of consulting experience under your belt. How did you come to consulting?
I knew early on, as a developer, I didn’t want to sit at a desk and code all day. I did that at first and enjoyed it. My passion lies in serving people and clients–learning about, and from, them–and working every day to be better in everything I do. I felt (and still feel) that consulting was that career to help me live out that purpose.
What’s on the horizon for Fortimize?
First and foremost, our folks should look forward to cultivating and growing a really talented team. One of the biggest challenges in the Salesforce ecosystem right now is talent. And there’s no better way to overcome that than building it from within.
I’m a huge sports fan, so I liken it to building your team through the draft, as opposed to free agency. When you look at sports teams that have been considered “dynasties”, one common thread is that they draft and develop exceptionally well as the foundation of their team. You may win a championship or two by “buying” a superteam. But sustained success comes from building a foundation from within.
And second, as we cultivate and grow our consulting and corporate talent, we can all look forward to solving really unique, bleeding-edge client challenges with best-of-breed technology. With our deep roots in banking, wealth, real estate and asset management, I think you’d be hard pressed to find a better place to work that is deeply knowledgeable and passionate about industry innovation.
What’s on the horizon for Fortimize clients?
Two things: innovation and enhanced relationships.
With people, sales, delivery and operations being part of my new role, I look forward to working with the team to refine our client- and relationship-centered model from first meeting all the way through project completion.
The trust built through strong relationships end-to-end will enable us to bring innovative Salesforce solutions, supported by complementary technologies in the ecosystem, to the table. More often than not, these are going to be viewed through a lens of data and analytics, and will always be focused on the customer or employee outcome.
With an expanding role, how do you like to decompress and show up at your best each day?
I look at it in four facets: faith, family, friends, and fun.
I am anchored on the concept that while I am a flawed individual, I am also deeply loved. That fuels my sense of gratitude for the people in my life, as well as the opportunities and challenges I have.
Thanks to Fortimize and our people-first, virtual company model, I pick up and drop off my kids to/from school, and am present for all their activities. I also get to support my wife, who is a small business owner.
My strong groups of friends keep me grounded and accountable. We all decompress together through conversations over meals, trips, and other shared experiences we create together.
And finally, when I’m not doing the above, you’ll find me traveling with family or friends, in the gym lifting, out riding my Harley Nightrod, or watching/attending any of the Chicago sports team events.