Connector Spotlight: Mikkel Lunding
June 4, 2020
Q. Tell us a bit about the projects you’re working on.
I recently finished writing Connected’s Smart Home Report 2020 with a cross-disciplinary team of our talented practitioners. But as always in product, a completed task is quickly replaced by a new to-do!
Right now I’m very excited about helping out focusing our unallocated practitioners in what we call “Connected Labs”. As a product consultancy working with many new technologies, I believe we have an exciting opportunity to really understand our clients’ industries from many diverse perspectives. Especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.
With that in mind, a question we’re really interested in right now is: how we can use technology to ease our way back to a “new” normal? We call this returntech. Our Connected Labs’ efforts are focused around building out proof of concepts, which gives our practitioners unique opportunities to explore novel technologies that we can leverage in our client relationships—not to mention the educational aspect of letting our Connectors experiment with new, exciting technologies.
Q. What’s the most interesting challenge about the project?
Organizing an exploratory R&D unit like Connected Labs has three main challenge statements to solve for;
1. What user pain points is the industry trying to solve for right now?
2. What technologies are available to solve these pain points?
3. Do our unallocated resources have the skill set needed to work with the technologies in question?
It’s the aggregate of the three challenges together that excites me about the work.
Q. Where did you work prior to Connected?
Google, Trivago, and Scotiabank.
Q. What achievement are you most proud of in your career to date?
When I worked for Google I worked in the policy enforcement realm. One of the projects I was involved with led to the permanent advertisement ban for several organizations that were involved in a mulit-million dollar scam that masquraded human trafficking and fraud as a dating service. No matter how scary big tech can seem to a lot of people, I really want to pass a big shout out to Google for being seriously on top of their game when it comes to keeping nasty internet content away from their users!
Q. Do you have a mantra you live by?
“Nothing lasts” (and not in a pessimistic or negative way) and “everything in moderation”.
Q. What do you love to do outside of work?
Cooking, music (playing and listening), gardening, historical fiction books, sports, and long nights discussing everything and nothing with family and friends over a well-made meal.
Q. If you were stuck on a deserted island, what album, movie, and book would you take with you?
Album – Pink Floyd’s The Dark Side of the Moon (so much musical bliss and emotional variety)
Movie – Richard Linklater’s Waking Life (enough philosophical content for a lifetime)
Book – Ken Follett’s Century Trilogy (the best historical fiction I’ve ever read. I still hold some of the characters near and dear to my heart)
Q. Describe yourself in three words.
Independent, Friendly, Imaginative.
Q. And finally, what’s your favourite product and why?
As a Dane, I’ve got to say my bicycle, it takes me everywhere in a healthy and sustainable manner. My guitar deserves some praise too, as a tool for me to connect with friends and broader musical creativity. Don’t bike and play simultaneous, though.
From a software-related perspective, my favourite product is by far messenger apps. Having friends and family all over the world, it enables me to stay in touch with people across vast distances. WhatsApp is my personal favourite.
Fri Sep 23
Connector Spotlight: Mackenzie Dysart
When Mackenzie Dysart, Senior Product Manager isn’t helping her team deliver products to our partners, she’s cooking it up in the kitchen. From Butternut Squash to Palak Paneer, Mackenzie is always trying to perfect every recipe out there!
Fri Sep 9
Connector Spotlight: Sheranga Balasuriya
With a hair flip that no celebrity can match, Sheranga Balasuriya, Information Security Manager, heads the IT department at Connected. By making IT systems seamless, he ensures that every Connector is able to do their work with ease. When he’s not handling the management of data, he’s playing the guitar, reading, and gaming. But nothing makes his heart happier than capturing raw emotions through a camera, especially the shots he took from his trip to Iceland. Can you guess his favourite product as a tech and gaming enthusiast?