Interview by Joel Stewart
This month’s Man of the Month certainly fits the bill - Giuseppe Caltabiano, Senior Director of Marketing at Rock Content, as you will glean from his answers to my questions, but first a short bio:
Giuseppe lives in London and is often in Milan, where his 2 girls are based and study there too. Giuseppe also lectures at Universities in the UK and USA.
He currently leads brand, content, growth and product marketing at Rock Content. With more than 15 years of experience in B2B & B2C sectors, in 2020 Giuseppe started a collaboration with General Assembly, (a leader in marketing & tech education), where he teaches marketing, storytelling and branding.
Amongst many accolades, he was recognised as one of the most influential B2B marketers by companies Market Recruitment in 2019, Onalytica in 2018 and Traackr in 2016. Highly educated and experienced, Giuseppe also achieved an essential place among the 2017 ‘Top 25 Masters of Multichannel Marketing’.
What woman or female has influenced you the most outside of your family?
I’ve always been surrounded by women – my mother Lucia, my daughters Asia and Maya, my partner Antonella. They all have profoundly influenced my life. But you are asking about someone outside of my family, and this is not an easy question since so many have had some influence on me.
Probably the one that influenced me the most is Rose Marcario, former CEO of Patagonia Inc. She joined the company in 2008 as CFO, and Patagonia's profits tripled since then. After she was hired, she evaluated Patagonia's production processes and revised them to be more environmentally friendly, by eliminating waste and excess packaging materials. The company was one of the first major retailers to close all of its stores to protect its employees from Covid.
During seven years as CEO, she delivered strong sales growth, elevated the company’s profile and leaned into political activism, culminating in a lawsuit against President Donald J. Trump over his decision to shrink the size of two national monuments in Utah. She changed company’s mission into:
“We're In Business To Save Our Home Planet”
Currently she’s on the boards of two private companies: Meati, which makes plant-based meat, and Rivian, which makes electric cars. I truly love her profile. I follow her on all social platforms. It’s a great example of truly inclusive and purpose-driven business leader.
What and how have you, (your group, associates, company) supported Women in terms of equality, profile, and inclusion - in the past, currently, or intend to in the near future?
I have always fought to ensure that all women who work with me, enjoy an equal and inclusive environment. I still remember when, eight years ago, at that time I was employed by a large enterprise in the Energy field, I had to fight for months with the VP of HR in order to have one Woman of my Italian team working from home, to give her the possibility to spend time with her young kids. Today we're fully remote, most of our companies have adopted a WFA (work from anywhere) policy and it would be unthinkable to go back… but at that time, it was an epic battle.
That’s why I felt so excited when I (virtually) met for the first time Yvonne and Cydnie Thompson, plus the team at WinTrade Global. And that’s the reason why I’ve supported and intend to support WTG and other such institutions in the future.
In addition to being a member of the advisory board at WinTrade Global, I am an advising member at an Italian Ngo, Soleterre Work In Progress, based in Milan, which focuses on increasing employment opportunities for the most vulnerable.
How should men (or you) respond to the fact that more women are ‘taking over’ men's roles?
Joel, I must admit that this is an “interesting” question. I have been working in marketing for tech companies for most of my life, where – it’s well known – women represent the major share and there are no “men’s roles”. I reported to great women managers, and I had/have women reporting to me. Again, difficult to think of it as men’s role in this specific job category.
At the same time, numbers tell a very different story and men working in more traditional environments – think about finance or engineering/ manufacturing – might still think that way. I would simply tell them that if women are taking roles that in the past were considered “men’s roles” , it is simply because they do much better than men!
Regardless the category, men need to support women – we must show respect
and leave any biases at the door.
Who's your favourite female artist - musician, storyteller, singer, actor, writer, painter, et cetera?
There is no one favourite female artist... there are so many! But I will mention two of them: I’ve always loved Annie Lennox’s voice and Eurhythmics were one of my favourite bands when I was a teenager; and Isabel Allende has always been my favourite writer. Two years ago, I booked two seats to finally see her at a lecture event at the Southbank Centre in London, which was unfortunately cancelled because of Covid... I am currently reading her new book, Violeta. Another incredible story, based in a country I love, Chile. But that’s another story…
What are you currently working on or Pursuing - A book, a talk, a presentation or publication, maybe something personal? A seminar? Or collaborating with someone else...
I have been thinking about writing a book for a long time, but I never had the time to sit down and put together content and thoughts. Who knows, maybe this year?
And I love teaching – I teach marketing at General Assembly and Storytelling at a Business School in Milan. Next week I will be guest lecturing at the London South Bank University. I hope to have the chance to keep this passion for a long time.
Oh, I think he also likes Eddie, his dog!
But most of all I am trying to spend time with my 2 girls. My 2 teenage daughters live in Milan, and as you can imagine I had very hard time during the pandemic because of travel limitations. Hopefully things will slowly go back to normal.
Indeed, many thanks again Giuseppe - one more question you would like to be asked – and your answer!
Where can we read your marketing articles?
On my blog Marketing Across Borders, of course!
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The WinTrade Global Network is the brainchild of Dr Yvonne Thompson CBE. Yvonne and has been a thriving women in business network for the last 25 years. Since 1996 we have been championing and a mentoring; training, upholding, supporting and celebrating both small business owners and women working within corporate structures.
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