Name: Mohammed Hussain
Company: Mobile Fun, providing mobile accessories, headsets and more.
First job: Sale Consultant at Carphone Warehouse – I was (and still am actually!) a total phone geek, so my first job at Carphone Warehouse wasn’t too hard to be good at. In fact, it was a great part-time job during my university days as, being based at the Marylebone High Street branch in Central London, I met a few famous people during my stint there; from upgrading Melanie Sykes’ phone to getting Jason Scott Lee top up vouchers.
Dream job: Virgin Galactic Pilot – they’ve recently done their first recruitment drive for this dream job so it has moved into my number one spot, just ahead of becoming an F1 driver.
Car: Mercedes C220 CDI – I live about 40 miles from the office so both my car and I have to travel quite a few motorway miles each week. My car choice was mainly because of the distance I drive each year, but also the fact that it is such a comfortable and practical vehicle.
Economy, business or first class: Economy – it just makes sense as I travel quite a bit for trade shows and to meet with suppliers in the Far East, Europe and the US. Besides, I’d rather spend more on my hotel as that’s where the majority of my time is spent. Spending more on a hotel room offers me a far better cost to comfort ratio than travelling business or even first class.
Most extravagant purchase: My wedding – it was a relatively small affair with 950 guests over three events. Very modest for our culture!
Most-played song on your iPod: Stevie Wonder’s Superstition.
Best business book: I don’t really read many books these days as blogs seem to provide me more information on a day-to-day basis. However, looking back to business books I read early in my career, I would say iCon Steve Jobs: The Greatest Second Act in the History of Business gave me a great insight into the company and the man. A very inspirational book and an all-round great read.
Worst business moment: Not being aggressive enough when first expanding internationally. We left expansion into Europe until 2008, when we launched our German website and office in Hamburg, and it was yet another two years before we set up our French website and office in Paris. When launching Mobile Fun Germany, things started getting quite tough after the first year as sales weren’t growing as quickly as we had anticipated. We took the difficult decision to scale back, which basically hindered our initial growth. Mobile Fun Germany has been a great success for us, leading to launches in other countries, so if we had just stuck it out, it would have grown even faster.
Proudest business moment: Winning Mobile News’ “Online Retailer of the Year” award in 2011 – we’ve won some major awards over the years (eg the Sunday Times’ Tech Track, Deloitte Fast 50 and the Online Retail Awards) but the Mobile News’ award was particularly special. It is the most prestigious award within our industry and was presented in front of suppliers, some of whom have helped us grow into a successful company and others that we’d like to work with. Winning this award is already helping to drive our business forward by raising our profile within the industry and with prospective clients and suppliers.
Your business mentor: Anthony Cook, chairman and founder of Mobile Fun – I turn to him regularly for advice and guidance, and he’s great at giving clear perspective to any issues I’m tackling while also being instrumental in managing special projects at Mobile Fun.
Next big thing: Voice Controlled Everything – voice control is a new thing for phones but we will soon see it transferring over into use within cars, homes and all manner of other technologies. Although voice control technology has been around for many years, it wasn’t really any good before. Nowadays, it is almost there though. SIRI on the new iPhone 4S is impressive but not quite perfect yet, so it’s only a matter of time.
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