Meet our people: Michael, service king

Meet the diverse people at blue-infinity that help make us distinctive. Michael has always been a “people person“. Since his junior years in the hotel business in Hawaii, he has always been at the coalface of customer support - and loving it.

Currently, Michael Kyburz is part of our Service Support team in Lausanne, based at one of blue-infinity’s largest clients.

“I started working at blue-infinity on July 1st 2013, Canada Day.”Memorable for the fact that Michael is part Canadian, part Hawaiian (in spirit!) and part Swiss. His soft accent and multinational background make him ideally suited for a role that changes frequently and encounters a vast number of people every day. “In service support, it’s all about how to make people feel at ease, to provide the service they are looking for, even when there is no immediate answer. I make people feel they are taken care of.”

Michael understands well the concept of perception; the fact that we are all connected and should always put our best foot forward, “even if we think we are not [connected] - the principle of six degrees of separation for example!” For this reason, Michael always strives to be upfront and realistic with his customers, the myriad of clients who come to him for IT support.

How does one deal with every kind of issue, and every kind of customer? “I be myself first of all, and go right to work on the issue. I show the client that I’m doing everything I can, giving them a ‘play by play’ which gives transparency around the issue and the resolution. The client then goes away more relaxed, knowing what the next steps are.”

How did Michael end up working in technology, and not within another field? He started at a telecoms provider in Switzerland, and was a Service Manager. The problems in the physical stores needed addressing and Michael was part of a team that introduced a support line. This worked well, and with his Swiss German and fluent English, issues were efficiently resolved. Michael now finds that the pace at blue-infinity is more what he prefers, faster and more results focused, with several of his ideas implemented based on his own initiative. He is not alone!

“On the job, I like to think I can lighten people’s day. We have an ‘interactive’ shop in-house, it’s a like a computer pit-stop. We can set up new machines, manage different hardware and turn around the tough customers. Needless to say, all with a smile!”

The most important thing for Michael at work? Teamwork. “This is important. We have to think of the team all the time. The atmosphere and team spirit, to go the extra mile for colleagues.” The team, commonly at blue-infinity, is diverse and of the 40 Service Support members, Michael’s unit makes up about 10. “It’s a New Year, and a fairly new team.” Almost everyone is of a different nationality. “We have a balance of technical and people skills, so our strengths and weaknesses help us complement each other.”

What about other passions? Hiking? The great outdoors? Travel? Michael takes it all in his stride and is a true family man, when it comes to DIY and discovering new corners of Europe. He crosses an international border everyday to work, across Lake Geneva so you could say his travel also impacts his work. Michael is curious about software and designing software for real world implementation. “I’m also a nut about home renovation. My wife and I have changed the apartment tremendously!”

For Michael, his international environment is advantageous of working at blue-infinity. “Top of the line equipment, a top client and selling people on new technology. Speaking three languages on the job at a perfect location.” Michael passed an ITIL P3 course with blue-infinity also, in the measure of his work. “I’d like to do more of those. Everybody knows me here, I even recognize people on the boat home. My neighbor works with me too!”

Michael just completed a pilot project with a new surface device which replaces an iPad and laptop combination. “It wasn’t so easy to configure. Besides this, we had a huge project last year with Lync, to replace the phone system. The groundwork was that I had to take landline phones away, unbeknownst to their owners…”

Experiences can often push our boundaries and change our mindset. “It’s not always a welcome thing to make changes, and some people may not like it. However, it might be in the best interests of the end-user - the client is king. Honesty is always the best policy.” Michael certainly has a broad access to people in his role, with a lot of trust. “I represent blue-infinity to a client of a few thousand employees, another reason why transparency is important.”

“My advice to newcomers is to learn from your colleagues, be open and make people feel at ease. Customer satisfaction is rewarding, when someone really means ‘thank you’, it makes myself and the team feel good.”

Michael is proud to be ‘passionately digital’, in a position that forces him to be up to date on technology, and able to resolve questions about it.  Finally, he adds, “Our people…they’re what makes us function. Without people, what would we be as a company? We need to have team players, otherwise it just doesn’t gel. You need to be accessible all the time for the greater goal. Consistent service and wearing the uniform.” 

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About the author

Kirk Havelock

Kirk is a keen writer and part of blue-infinity's Marcom team, previously holding diverse roles with leading multinationals, and is originally from New Zealand.