Cleveland resident, David Briganti, who is an Enterprise SE manager at Dell EMC, recently gave his time to answer some questions about the business side of things in the workplace and what his expectations are of his employees. In this interview, Mr. Briganti revealed some important aspects of the workplace and gave his advice for how to be successful and what not do. After graduating college in 1992, Mr. Briganti worked hard to get where he got to today and he was more than happy to share his experiences.
What is your professional history?
Mr. Briganti: “Graduated 1992 from Villanova University with Electrical Engineering Degree
1991 – 2000, Picker International / Marconi Medical Systems (same company just a name change)
1991 – Started as an intern junior year of college, running quality test programs for CT Division (Computed Tomography aka CAT Scanners)
1992 – Hired full-time shortly after graduation as Associate Quality Engineer, in the CT Division
1994 – Promoted to Engineer – ran and developed variety of quality programs for CT systems and 3D visualization workstations for Oncology
1998 – Promoted to Senior Engineering – moved to PACS Division, and was the lead hardware engineering in the development of our PACS product line
2000 – present, EMC Corporation now part of Dell Technologies
2000 – Associate Systems Engineer, hired as a presales systems engineer focusing on the medium sized business in the Cleveland area
2003 – Promoted to Systems Engineer
2007 – Promoted to Senior Engineer, moved to Enterprise district where I was now responsible for the top 30 accounts in the Cleveland area
2009 – Promoted to Advisory Engineer, same role
2011 – Promotion to Technical Consultant Manager, lead the presales activities for a team of 5 SEs in the Cleveland Area
2013 – just a title change to Manager, Systems Engineer – same role
2016 – EMC was acquired by Dell Technologies – similar role but now cover a much broader line of products and solution set.”
What writing advice do you have for professional communicators?
“Proof read. It’s so easy and quick to communicate these days whether email, text or social media. Take a few seconds or minutes to read through what you wrote.”
What is your one pet peeve when it comes to professional writing?
“Poorly written requests, especially emails for some sort of action without any context or timeline. We often get requests for something around our business or customers, for example: “Can you send me a list of all the SAP accounts in your territory?” My pet peeve is tell my “why” you are requesting this as well as when do you want this completed by. If I was writing this request it would be something along the lines of:
“Can you send me a list of all the SAP accounts in your territory? We have a new specialist, John Smith, that just joined our company from SAP and he is an expert on XYZ where we think he can help with sales campaigns in our accounts. Also, I need this by EOD (end of day) on Friday 9/6””
What kind of business reports do you read and/or compose regularly?
“Crain’s Cleveland Business – business news and information for northeast Ohio
Wall Street Journal – specially the Technology section
Investor’s Business Daily – keep up on various technologies and I’m also an avid investor”
What are your writing suggestions to make those types of reports successful?
“I’m struggling with this one. I think on top of some of the other suggestions mentioned, I would just add to make sure it’s clear and concise with an appropriate title or subject. There’s nothing worse than clicking on an article to get some sort of long winded report that is hard to follow, is not informative and isn’t relative to the subject. I’ve hit several of these you get half way through it and decide to move on to something else.”
What speaking advice do you have for professional communicators?
“Know your audience and be able to tailor your message to who you are speaking to while making the message simple and valuable to them. I see too often, especially in the industry, that someone shows up with a PowerPoint presentation where the presenter is so excited about whatever whizbang product or feature he/she is there to try to sell that they forget to find out how this will help the customer and whether or not it is even relevant to the business needs. The best communicators can simplify the message/solution and make it solve some sort of issue for the customer.”
Name one thing you wish you had known about business communication prior to your professional career?
“Knowing why something is important over the what. Early on in my career at EMC, I had the pleasure to hear our VP of Marketing Sales, Jeff Goldberg speak at an event in Cleveland. There’s one thing he said that has stuck with me through all these years. “Those that know how, will always work for those that know why…””
After assessing the Burning Glass list of Baseline Skills (2016), which skills not in the top 5 would you move into the top 5…and why?
“Building effective relationships – being a customer facing roles whether it be as a presale engineer and sales, this skill is critical to our success. If you build a solid relationship with customers they more apt to like you, want to help you, share information from you and ultimately buy from you.”
What team skills do you feel young professionals need the most?
“Don’t be afraid to ask for help. I see a lot of young professionals struggle with certain aspects of their respective roles and too often try to figure things out by themselves. Although, that’s great trait to have that to figure it out on your own, humans (at least most) are more than willing to help another person out.”
As you can see, Mr. Briganti has had a lot of experience in business communications, considering he has been using these skills for almost thirty years. He had to develop these skills all throughout college and even his early work career. Everything is learned, and mistakes will be made, but as long as you get to where you want to be, then all is worth it.
David Briganti is a System Engineering Manager with Dell Technologies, where he has over 8 years of management experience leading technologies presales. Starting in 2000, he joined EMC Corporation as an Associated Systems Engineer and quickly rose through the ranks to an Advisory System Engineer with presales responsibility of the largest enterprise accounts in the Cleveland area. In 2011, David was promoted to a management position for the enterprise presales team while also bringing positive changes to the Cleveland office. EMC Corporation was eventually acquired by Dell Technologies in 2016, he currently is responsible for technical sales for Dell’s data center solutions portfolio.
David received his Bachelors in Electrical Engineering at Villanova University in Villanova, Pennsylvania. Upon graduation, he immediately began working as Quality Assurance Engineer at Picker International Inc. that was headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio. Picker International was a leading manufacturer of advanced medical diagnostic imaging system and is now a division of Philips Medical.
In addition to his career in the medical imaging and information technology industries, David is also heavily involved with youth sports in his community. He has coached a variety of baseball, softball and volleyball in his community over the past 20 years. In addition, he served as Vice President of the Athletic Association at Mater Dei Academy. David is also active member of a several volunteer organizations in the Cleveland, Ohio area including Habitat for Humanity, Greater Cleveland Food Bank and the American Red Cross.
In addition to be a technology enthusiast, Dave is an avid golfer and loves spending time with his wife and four children