The Vibrancy of Multiculturalism

Fabien Ignaccolo - Chief Executive Officer for Okay

Although born and raised in France, I feel much more like a citizen of the world. I received my education in France and England. I have worked for French, German, Norwegian, British, and American companies, I have a half-English wife, with a father-in-law living in Norway, and my own family originating in Italy! Multiculturalism has been a part of my life since day one, whether it be the co-existence of diverse racial, religious and cultural groups or how it manifests into behaviors, assumptions, values, patterns of thinking, and communication styles. I cannot imagine where, or who, I would be today without such an international perspective. 

Sales: A Love Affair

I received my undergrad degree from the Grenoble Business School and then received my MBA in Newcastle Upon Tyne. Immediately after I graduated, I began my sales and sales management career and have stayed there ever since. I genuinely mean it when I say that I am in love with B2B sales. At its core, you are simply trying to help people solve their problems. For me, it is much more rewarding than B2C sales because, in B2B, you open up a long-lasting relationship with your customer. As an extroverted people-person, there is nothing I enjoy more than supporting a network of happy people and thriving products.

The advice I would have to anyone getting into sales is to know your product, show your passion for that product, and always prioritize active listening over talking.

Alongside Aleksander Farstad, today's New Normal Group CEO, I was working at eZ Systems: a multichannel, headless Content Management System designed for marketing and self-service apps. Together, we helped lead the company to success, so it made a lot of sense for Aleksander and me to come back together on Okay. Although I am now operating as the CEO, I still see myself as a salesman: making quick decisions, reading the situation, and relentlessly asking questions to better understand my customers' challenges.

The Colors of Creativity 

One of the main reasons I love working at Okay is the people besides me. With a small team, you come to feel like a family, which is very important to me. And although we are a young company, I see a long and bright future ahead of us, with our team's diversity acting as a significant competitive advantage. I also think we are a pretty resilient team, and we can combat setbacks and failures with a relentless drive for success.

The future of sales will be digital, and sellers will need to be more empathetic and creative for their products to stand out and survive.

I have spent a lot of my time problem solving, whether that's in a professional or personal sense. Outside of work, I am a father, a fly fisherman, a sculptor, and a painter. I even play piano and write music. As a release from my job's structured world, creative pursuits get me to think outside of the box, trickling down to making better business decisions. Like in fly fishing, sales is ultimately an intriguing battle of wits that comes in addition to appreciating the tradition and grace of the game.