Karl Havard

Karl Havard

Managing Director at Taiga Cloud

Taiga Cloud
Karl Havard, Managing Director at Taiga Cloud, shares his journey from the electronic engineering environment to commercialising services for GenAI

If there were a way to describe Karl Havard’s career journey, it would definitely involve something along the lines of “snapping up opportunities that came his way”. The current Managing Director of Taiga Cloud who shared his journey from his early days of electronic and communication engineering within the British Army to now leading Europe’s largest Generative AI Cloud Service Provider that will support technology’s future. 

Havard’s 10-year stint in the military helped shape who he is today: easy to communicate with, dedicated to growth, and disciplined in his approach to business. Since building his skills in that way, Havard has been soaking up all of the opportunities that follow a trainee of the prestigious armed forces, leading to his first civilian role as a Commercial Engineer at General Electric Manufacturing Company. 

Having joined and left the company in the 90s, it’s safe to say that Havard has moved on from this role and, unbeknown to him at the time, there would be many stepping stones to choose from in order to reach his current position. Veering into the sales funnel, he became the Solution Sales Director at Zebra Technologies, later the VP EMEA for Gomez Inc, but over the past few years of technological growth, Havard has been at the forefront, working with the likes of Google and Amazon Web Services (AWS), building major partnerships and client relationships across Europe. 

Although, Havard himself would argue that he’s always been involved in some of the latest technologies through his time in the military as his position as an Electronic Engineer allowed him to develop his understanding rather quickly. 

“I completed a quite extensive three-year electronics apprenticeship and then went into specific equipment training and then into the live environments. This led me to always be on the edge of the latest technology,” Havard says. 

“Being involved in secure communications and information technology, I left the military and moved to a GEC in an engineering role, then quickly into a commercial role and then got involved with something that was called the internet.” 

Exposed to the earlier stages of the internet, you could say that Havard has grown in line with the IT of the times and learned how to adapt in the ever-changing environment while also looking forward to what the future holds for technology. When you look at the position he occupies today, Havard has certainly shown his ability to peer into the future as he now leads an organisation built for new-age tech. 

As a result, he is now the frontrunner of a business that is successfully backing innovation in Generative AI, making available the necessary computing power for developing software. As a leader in this space, Havard recognises the demand for clear communication, which is something he prides himself on and can attribute to his “fair degree of emotional quotient” as he bridges the knowledge of the engineering side with the client and partner engagement on the commercial side. Much of this comes from his desire to be true to himself and work in ways that not only reign true to his values, but also support those he communicates with. 

“The ability to communicate doesn't mean to transmit all the time, it's also about absorbing what's around you, understanding the context, having a high-degree of self-awareness—wherever possible, try to understand the other person's point of view. If you can empathise with them, then great. Effective communication is everything.”

Read the full story HERE.

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