Monday… well almost. My journey of Consultancy and Advocacy.
Paul Carter is an IT Management Consultant/Developer specializing in ERP systems. Paul’s career in IT begin very early. He started programming as a teenager and was part of a Wizkid program at a local technical college. Working in the family business, Paul started computerizing various aspects of the business. It was a natural progression that Paul wanted to study Computer Science. While studying at Memorial University of Newfoundland, his talents were put to good use. Recommended by the Dean of Computer Science, Paul was hired by the Computing & Communications department where he continued to work for a few years after completing his degree. One of his favourite things he got to do while working there was working with Apple Canada in owning, showcasing and promoting their line of products. As this was happening, the Atlantic northwest cod fishery collapsed and while not laid off, the University froze salaries & budgets. Paul, worried about his prospects, decided to move out west and took a big risk. He resigned without a job prospect and got on the last boat to the mainland for the season. Actually there’s another boat that runs all year round, but that’s another 900 km journey to get to before even starting the nearly 6,100 km to get there.
During the journey from Newfoundland to British Columbia, he saw a job at the University of British Columbia and applied. Once he arrived in Vancouver a message was left for him to come in for an interview. As it turns out the directors of IT Services know each other. They were both part of a precursor to CANARIE, an ultra-high-speed network connecting Canada researchers, educators and innovators to each other and to global data, technology, and colleagues. And that’s something Paul worked on while at Memorial University. This was the birth of the Internet for Canadians. The World Wide Web was just in its infancy and Paul created a billing system for the dial up users who mostly still interacted with a terminal before web browsers were a thing. We were already connected and this would become part of Canada’s digital economy. That’s when Paul knew he wanted to concentrate on business and databases.
While at the University of British Columbia, Paul worked on networking the campus, giving access to the network and the Internet so faculty and staff could communicate and access information right from their desks. It was a huge undertaking and it seemed no one knew how much this would become part of everyday life to be connected anywhere and anytime.
At the same time, businesses were starting to see the potential of this network which we all now know as the cloud. Coopers & Lybrand was just about to merge with Price Waterhouse and these two large accounting firms with large professional consulting branches were expanding quickly. To meet the demand for their clients to implement, amalgamate, and upgrade their systems to be ready for “eBusiness” they were hiring consultants. Paul applied for the job and became part of an amazing team of global consultants. His role would be primarily be implementation of ERP systems and developing software to enable businesses to handle this growth. Then ENRON happened. His Management Consulting Services division had to separate from the auditing arm due to the Sarbanes–Oxley Act.
They were always striving to provide clients with what was in their best interests. He never felt pressured to ‘sell’ something just to make a buck. It came as no surprise that it was announced they would be spun off into a new global firm. Brand expert company Wolff Olins, came up with their new name, MONDAY. At first it was bizarre, but it soon made perfect sense. Monday’s were usually the start of something great. But sadly MONDAY never came to be, but at least he got the T Shirt! Instead the consulting arm was sold to IBM. The consultant arm joined their Global Business Services division. That’s when he was given a serial number and he felt unhuman. He was being trained in IBM hardware and software. He no longer felt he could be or seen to be independent. So that’s when he decided to leave and become an independent consultant.
Now for the past 16 years, he continued this work and proud to have worked with a lot of successful clients in keeping up with the pace of technology advancements and change. The most recent project is helping a provincial government with enabling the sales and accounting of a newly legalized industry in Canada, Cannabis. After getting through Cannabis 1.0 in a year, moved onto Cannabis 2.0, in which edibles, concentrates, and topicals will be legally sold. He says it’s always exciting to see the next evolution of software and tools available to make is happen. However, one thing remains the same is his favourite part of the job. Interacting and communicating with people. It’s key to change and what drives his passion.
So how did he become an Electric Vehicle advocate? The day before the reveal of the Tesla Model X in February 2012, a colleague pointed out to him that Tesla was coming out with an SUV. He always dreamed of owning an SUV, but never could justify owning such a gas guzzler. We’ll it seems Tesla came to the rescue. He put down a deposit for a Signature Edition the very next day as soon as he could reserve online. Ever since then, after researching for a community around this new technology, he found a few and joined them. He discovered that he had a passion for it and wanted to share this knowledge with others. Just like in his professional career, change is hard. And he loves talking to people about it and making others feel comfortable and understand it. This has been part of him for as long as he can remember. Maybe it’s the Newfoundlander in him. But what ever it is he really enjoys it and people tell him they really appreciate that passion.
When Tesla announced an Owners Club program, many local Tesla owners reached out to see if a club could be formed in our area. Paul stepped forward and organized the owners into a club. Later Paul helped organize the Owners Club Presidents by arranging a quarterly call to share ideas and work together to best serve its members and to support Tesla in its mission.