Disruption Insights: Tech Capabilities and Knowledge of Business Drivers
Jessica Constantinidis is one of the most seasoned innovation professionals I have had the pleasure to connect with.
Currently working as an Evangelist in the Chief Innovation Office at ServiceNow, a platform-as-a-service provider supporting the IT operations of large corporations, she is responsible for covering Europe, the Middle East, and Africa regions.
Before joining ServiceNow, Jessica Constantinidis held multiple managing roles at companies including a multinational bank, startups, and one of the largest employers in South Africa.
Having more than 20 years of IT consulting and implementation experience with leading technology solutions and platforms, Jessica seamlessly guides customers embarking on a complete turnaround of their businesses and supports them in achieving their desired results. In-depth knowledge of business drivers paired with technical capabilities is what enables her to identify customer challenges and deliver meaningful solutions.
IT is Jessica’s true passion and she loves to share her experience and coach others. See what you can learn from her.
In the Disruption Insights series, we discover inspirations and insights from global innovators who shape how we live and do things today. True innovation doesn’t happen as an overnight breakthrough — it’s an ongoing process of constant trial and error done by teams and organizations who strive to solve real human problems. Jessica Constantinidis is one of the people who push those ideas forward, making things possible.
💼 Corporate innovation
How do you choose one idea out of one hundred?
That is an easy one, I choose an idea that I know WHY I want to pursue and the one that has a clear goal. The outcomes of that idea have to bring value to all stakeholders, improve or create revenue or operational efficiency, must be measurable, and feasible to be delivered within a timeframe that is jointly agreed.
My motto is: “You can put a sensor on anything, but does it make sense?"
How do you convince decision-makers to back innovative ideas?
There’s a foolproof way to do it: building a business case. If you can present the benefits of your idea in a clear and concise business case, decision-makers will understand WHY you are doing this and they will be more likely to back it up. A well-thought-out business case will also help them defend your idea towards their management and stakeholders.
One thing you’d change about your work
There’s nothing particular I’d change about my work, but all the extra checks required to get into the office, due to government restrictions, make my life a bit more difficult.
💪🏼 Innovation mindset
One personality trait that helps you at your daily job
That would be my Greek honesty and values, also my communication skills. As an Evangelist in the Innovation Office, I am required to "translate" a lot of business issues into the IT language, so these traits definitely facilitate it.
What drives you at work?
The possibility to help people improve their lives through automations or tweaks they weren’t even aware of is what fuels my passion. If I can help one person per day be more successful, that makes me very happy. Also, a great working culture at ServiceNow that rewards hard work and is accompanied by loads of laughter and fun is what makes me get up every morning with a smile on my face.
Your dream profession when you were 20
I started out wanting to be a veterinarian. Then I decided I wanted a career that made me travel a lot, see the world, broaden my horizons, and help others. At the time I was 20 my current job didn't exist, but I helped it evolve into what we know today.
So, I probably built my dream job in collaboration with my previous managers.
One day I would love to be a real digital nomad with just a laptop and camera, being able to choose from all these exotic destinations in the world to go explore and work in.
The biggest milestone in your career path
There wasn’t any particular milestone. I credit my need for challenging environments as it brought me to where I am today. Every time someone asked me if I would be interested in taking over a role that was totally unknown to me, I jumped and took the opportunity. The biggest jump was taking over a General Manager role for EMEA at my previous employer.
I had no idea what the position was about at the time I accepted it, but I got the chance to try it out for a few months, learn and grow. I managed to hold the position for quite a long time and hit my targets again and again.
That was the moment I realized that if you are eager to learn, never think you can’t do something.
Just jump, do it, take a chance life brings you, gather experience, and evolve.
The biggest accomplishment in your career path
I was a part of a big IoT project for Connected Conservation in South Africa a few years ago.
Our team managed to save the endangered rhino population in this country by using technology.
From losing a rhino every eight hours to poachers, to eventually reducing poaching by 96%, thus knowing that future generations will get to experience the beauty of these magnificent animals because of my contribution to that technology project, was probably one of the proudest moments of my life.
It was an impressive co-creation, out-of-the-box-thinking project that resulted in making the world a better place.
💡 Inspiration corner
Biggest source of daily inspiration
I use social media and the Internet for trend-spotting a lot. My source of inspiration at ServiceNow is our executive leadership team and some of our wave-makers like Dave Wright. In general, I follow people who have achieved fantastic innovations in life and see where they get inspiration from.
Books that inspire you
- "Never Split the Difference" by Chris Voss
- "Start With Why" by Simon Sinek
- "The Unicorn Project" by Gene Kim
- "Rich Dad Poor Dad" by Robert Kiyosaki
- "Leaders Eat Last" by Simon Sinek
Blogs and magazines you follow
- Business Insider
- Conde Nast
Podcasts you listen to
- Innovation and Leadership with Jess Larsen
- I am a bit of a geek, so I listen to a few podcasts about tech gadgets
Movies that inspire you
- "The Intouchables" — Best movie ever!
- "The Bucket List"
- "The Impossible" — I was in Southeast Asia when the tsunami hit
- "Minority Report"
- James Bond movies — for entertainment
Want to be a part of the Disruption Insights series? Shoot us an email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Discover insights from other inspiring innovation leaders:
- "Luck Can Help Great Ideas. What Else Can?" with Pawel Stezycki from Netguru
- "Fostering Collaboration and Open Dialogue" with Åse Marthinsen from DNB
- "Ideas and Implementation Go Hand in Hand" with Mayank Chauhan from H&M