Blogger Bios

Abi Chandra

Abi Chandra

My career in telephony has unintentionally mimicked the life cycle of contact center solutions. In the 1990's, I was working on Rockwell's legacy ACD systems after which I then used server board-based systems at Aspect Solutions. Now, for the past five years, I have been working on IP systems for Interactive Intelligence. My primary background is in Cisco Systems data and voice networking and integrations. At Interactive Intelligence I am responsible for designing and architecting large-scale contact center solutions for strategic customers. I also regularly train our channel partners in systems engineering design methodologies. In my spare time, I enjoy making movies and the creative arts. People are surprised to hear that I am an avid Jazzerciser.

Adrian Bethell

Adrian Bethell

I am the EMEA and LATAM Contact Center Consultant at Interactive Intelligence, identifying opportunities for customers to maximize value through implementation of effective methodologies and contact centre best practices. I have over 15 years of industry experience including managing large and small, inbound and outbound, multi-lingual contact center operations and I am a physics graduate (University of Leeds, UK). My work has been focused on maximizing enterprises’ leverage from successful customer contact and has included realignment of KPIs and metrics with business goals, implementation of enabling technologies and tools, focus on continual improvement and high quality delivery, consolidating customer-centric best practices and driving innovation and intelligence into operational strategy. Among others I have worked in the Financial, Medical/Healthcare, Technology, Mobile & Telecommunications, Automotive, FMCG, Utilities and Insurance Industries. My native language is English, I’m fluent in French and Spanish and speak Italian. I currently live with my wife and daughter in Barcelona, Spain where I have been for the last ten years.

Anish Sharma

Anish Sharma

I joined Interactive Intelligence in July, 2011. Prior to that, I worked with an Elite partner for 11 years. Over the years, I worked with various products from Interactive Intelligence, including support, implementation and development. A self-confessed geek, I enjoy taking things apart and figuring how it works. One of my passions is photography and I have a personal photo blog.

Bobbi Chester

Bobbi Chester

I joined the Solutions Marketing team at Interactive Intelligence April 2011, leading our vertical marketing efforts, and focusing specifically on the accounts receivable management and collections industry. I have over 15 years experience with contact center technologies, beginning in 1997 at MCI (which eventually became Verizon Business) where I was part of a specialized services team selling complex call routing and treatment solutions to Fortune 1000 and global clients. Just prior to joining Interactive Intelligence I was Director of Marketing for a contact center outsourcing company headquartered near Chicago. I am a proud wife of an Air Force officer, and admittedly a bit melancholy now that the Harry Potter series has come to an end.

Chip Funk

Chip Funk

I joined the Interactive Intelligence team in 2012 and couldn't think of a place I would rather work, short of perhaps a professional baseball team. Baseball is my passion, but I have learned to love what I do over the course of my career. I have enjoyed more than 25 years of experience in the contact center either leading the operation, building the contact center services teams that support the operation, or filling the all-too-present gap between Information Technology and contact center leadership. As a Manager in our Contact Center Consulting organization, my team is responsible for the consulting needs of our customers in the Eastern and Southeastern regions. We work with organizations to define contact center strategy, improve the quality of their customer experience, redesign or introduce processes necessary to drive contact center execution and most importantly, leverage their investment in Interactive Intelligence products. I believe a key to the success I have experienced in my career is my fascination with people watching and developing the ability to apply the appropriate leadership style. As a result, my guilty pleasure is reality TV. Fortunately, my wife Maureen is a people watcher as well.

Chuck Swain

Chuck Swain

I've been a member of the contact center consultants team at Interactive Intelligence since June 2013; it’s a very rewarding role that allows me to work with many diverse organizations and share my passion for managing in a contact center. I've spent roughly 25 years working in contact centers and believe there is no more diverse type of work than what contact center leaders are faced with on a daily basis. Making the marriage between business process and technology harmonious is a fascination of mine, when it works it’s beautiful. While at the University of North Texas, the majority of my business studies were based in Strategic Management, I actually enjoy developing and executing short and long-term operational plans within a contact center. My recreational passion is golf - as a Floridian I get the chance to play a lot!

George Ganahl

George Ganahl

I joined Interactive Intelligence in March of 1999 as a member of the Education team. Coming from a data networking background, telephony was a new world to me, but I caught on and have enjoyed my work here. After several years in Education, I moved to Development as the Finalization Manager (heading the Install, Documentation, and Build teams), then filled the IC Platform Manager role for a while. During my time as the Platform Manager I had the privilege of working closely with all the development teams, as well as administering one of our production servers, building hotfixes, and working on various special projects. Eventually I returned to my first love, which is training our partners and customers as part of Education. Outside of work I enjoy time with my wife and four children, and competitive fencing when I have the opportunity.

Janet Thalacker

Janet Thalacker

I am currently a strategic business consultant for Interactive Intelligence. My role is to review an organization’s business practices and tools, to promote the awareness of new technologies, and demonstrate how new functionality, processes, and applications could increase customer satisfaction and employee productivity. My career path includes over 20 years of experience working for a Fortune 500 insurance company. My experience includes work with automatic call distribution (ACD), self-service applications, quality monitoring, workforce management, multi-channel communications platforms, knowledge management, and contact management. I am a very passionate person, enjoy what I do, and am motivated to help others and make a difference in my work and in my personal life. I enjoy music, reading, good friends and laughter. I value my family and friends, and cherish time with them.

Jason Alley

Jason Alley

Jason has both a broad and deep background in the area of customer interaction. He served as a product manager and strategist for the first six years of his career with companies such as Nortel, Aspect and Hipbone (a web collaboration company acquired by Kana). Jason spent the next ten years of his career consulting with enterprise customers and suppliers for Vanguard Communications and a company he later founded, SmartContact Consulting. Jason now serves on the solutions marketing team at Interactive Intelligence. His unique blend of end-user and supplier experience equips him with a fresh, comprehensive perspective – something he strives to infuse in every project. Jason holds a bachelor’s degree in business economics from UCLA.

Jennifer Wilson Peevey

Jennifer Wilson Peevey

I joined Interactive Intelligence in May 2009 as part of the AcroSoft acquisition. I currently work as the Solutions Marketing Manager focusing on our insurance vertical marketing efforts. During my time at AcroSoft and Interactive Intelligence, I have worked closely with our content management and workflow automation, both in professional services and product management. This includes over 10 years of experience working with insurance organizations on product implementations, customer support, product specifications, and business needs analysis. I hold a bachelor's degree from the University of South Carolina, and am a devoted USC Gamecocks fan. When I'm not working, I'm most likely mountain biking, playing tennis or kickball, or traveling.

John Butson

John Butson

I joined Interactive Intelligence in January of 2002 and have been fortunate to be part of the most incredible company in the world. As director of the client success team, my primary goal is to ensure our customers are successful in deploying the Interactive Intelligence solutions – helping them to turn customer service into a competitive weapon. Prior to joining Interactive, I worked in sales at Mitel Networks for five years. Before joining Mitel, I held various engineering and management positions at KeyBank. I have a bachelor of science degree in administrative services from The University of Toledo and an associates degree in engineering technology from Owens Community College. I also served four years in the United States Marine Corps. I am passionate about the customer experience and am always looking for ways to improve the delivery to our customers. If you have ideas, please contact me.

Lea Durbin

Lea Durbin

I joined Interactive Intelligence in December 2011. In my current role of customer experience quality specialist, I oversee and manage the Interactive Intelligence quality program, as well as the global ambassador program. Prior to joining Interactive Intelligence, I held a variety of roles in industries such as higher education, pharmaceutical, and healthcare. I gained experience in process improvement, developing and implementing corporate standards and best practices in cross functional global environments, leading internal global teams in branding and marketing efforts, as well as administration. I hold a dual associates degree in business administration and visual communications from American Intercontinental University. I am an active member in the Customer Experience Professionals Association (CXPA), Customer Reference Professionals Organization (CRP), International Customer Management Institute (ICMI), and the National Notary Association. I am heavily involved with the Interactive Intelligence Foundation as the committee chair for Gleaners Food Bank of Indiana. I also serve on the development board and speakers bureau for Gleaners Food Bank of Indiana, which resulted in Congressional recognition in 2013. I am passionate about bringing the personal connection to the customer experience and am continuously looking for ways to enhance, improve and strengthen our relationships with our customers.

Lesley Vereen

Lesley Vereen

My career in contact center management and consulting led me to Interactive Intelligence in December 2010 and the position of Product Manager for Interaction Recorder™. Initiation to the world of contact centers, and the technology to support them, began at UnitedHealthcare in Hartford, Connecticut. It was there that my focus on developing quality monitoring programs was launched, and led to 12 years of contact center consulting , working with centers of all sizes, across many industries, and in locations throughout the United States, in Mexico, Canada and the Philippines. One of my primary objectives is to continue to improve our recorder product with a focus on adding and improving features to support our customer’s quality monitoring/improvement processes. For the past three years now I’ve been calling Omaha, Nebraska home. After living in Pennsylvania, North Carolina, then New Hampshire, Connecticut, North Carolina again, and now Omaha, Nebraska, you’ll probably notice a pause if you happen to ask me "where are you from?"

Mechele Herres

Mechele Herres

My role at Interactive Intelligence is focused on the Utilities Vertical as a Marketing Solutions Manager, a role I began at the end of November 2011. My career has spanned roles in marketing, sales, sales training, and product development as well as management. I gained experience in the Utilities space from working at Columbia Gas and Time Warner Cable Business Class. Additionally, my time spent at IBM and Cardinal Health rounds out my knowledge base with other industry experience. When not at work I enjoy hanging out with family and friends, reading, gardening, beading, knitting, and doing just about anything creative.

Marilyn Saulnier

Marilyn Saulnier

I am a principal consultant at Interactive Intelligence with over 25 years of contact center management and consulting experience. I manage a global team of contact center consultants that work with organizations to define the center’s strategy, improve the center’s efficiency and quality of the customer experience, redesign processes, and implement and manage change. I'm also a frequent speaker at industry conferences and has led many training seminars in the US and abroad. I've also published articles in the Contact Center Pipeline, Middle-East Customer Management Insight, and Call Center Management Review.

Murph Krajewski

Murph Krajewski

I joined the Interactive Intelligence family in 2000 as an IT guy. Since then I’ve spent years demonstrating and showcasing our software and services to the masses both in person and via video through my current role as Video Production Manager. I’m most passionate about helping companies improve their customers’ experiences, and love thinking up new ways to make that happen. I’m a true jack-of-all-trades, and I will likely never stop trying to figure out a way to move to London, England.

Omar Usmani

Omar Usmani

I joined Interactive Intelligence in 2012 as a contact center consultant, and brought with me to the organization, more than 15 years’ of experience in contact center operations. Prior to joining Interactive, I spent nearly 15 years working in financial services; my expertise spans workforce management, contact center reporting and analytics, and call flow design. I have led product training sessions, consulted on implementations of various sizes, and encouraged the application of industry best practices. I was awarded a MBA from Indiana University where I studies Marketing and Supply Chain Management. I currently reside in the Indianapolis are with my wife and daughter.

Patrick Patton

Patrick Patton

I started with Interactive Intelligence in October 2011 as a Pre-Sales Consultant for the Strategic Initiatives Group. In this role I work with companies who are looking for opportunities to utilize process automation tools, and review their current business processes to find those opportunities. Previously, I spent ten years with a Fortune 25 health insurance company and that is where I first encountered Interactive Intelligence in 2008. As the technology Director for an internal sales contact center, I led a team that implemented the Interactive telephony solution. Over the next three years I became very familiar with Interactive Intelligence as a company, their products and many of the employees. I was so impressed with what I had seen that I set a personal goal to find a position within the company. I have over 15 years’ experience in continuous/process improvement, project management, and operations. I am always interested in learning about new technologies and the creative ways companies and people are using them. On a personal note I am a car enthusiast (gearhead), enjoy travelling, and recently have taken up photography as a hobby.

Pedro Silveira

Pedro Silveira

My ride with Interactive Intelligence started in 2011 and it’s been quite a journey! I was the third employee during the company’s start-up phase in Brazil managing marketing. Nowadays I’m taking care of marketing and lead generation for Latin America. My history in the contact center industry started with my former company, Altitude Software back in 2007. Prior to that, I worked at several advertising agencies. I have a bachelor’s degree in Marketing, Advertising and Social Communications by the Methodist University of Sao Paulo, Brazil. I love to be connected all the time, I’m a social network-a-holic, love to read everything about technology, market trends and analysis. To make people see that customer service is the most important phase of a product sales cycle is my personal quest. I have also a particularly interest in Astronomy, cars and motorcycles, video games and travelling.

Paul Simpson

Paul Simpson

I joined Interactive Intelligence in January 2008 as a Training Consultant in the Education Department. Based initially in the Amsterdam office, I transferred to Indianapolis in 2010, where I still work in Education. My formal areas of interest are Interaction Dialer and Interaction Process Automation, however I can usually be found experimenting with various abstract parts of the product and love to make it do cool things! I’m always playing around with scripting and automation. Anyone who has attended one of my classes will tell you that my theories of troubleshooting can involve chickens and I am passionate about the correct pronunciation of the word “router.” Prior to Interactive Intelligence, I worked as a school teacher (mathematics and computing), a network engineer (mostly Novell), a hardware support engineer and a developer. I can trace my computing history back to the days of the Z80 and 6502. I have a keen personal interest in home media and automation. I am also developing an interest in Animatronics and would like, one day, to create a haunted-house walk-through for Halloween. I can be quite opinionated and hope that my blog posts will spark some healthy debate.

Rachel Wentink

Rachel Wentink

I joined Interactive Intelligence in July 1999 as Manager of Technical Support for the Americas, then had the good fortune to move to the South of France to manage our Technical Support and Education division for Europe, Africa, and the Middle East (and yes, the South of France truly was wonderful!). I headed up our Product Management team for many years, and now lead a team focused on deploying our newer Business Automation technology worldwide. These include our business process automation, content management, and mobile application development solutions. My team and I perform frequent on-site customer and prospect visits and have the opportunity to see how many different industries perform their work across the world. This new focus also gives me a chance to work with disruptive technologies, and to experience how firms innovate from within--both successfully, and unsuccessfully. Prior to Interactive Intelligence I served in different roles as a technical support agent, knowledge manager, manager of an IT team administering a CRM system, and as an IT consultant focusing on customer service best practices. I hold an MBA from Ball State University, and an undergraduate degree in French Language and Literature from Florida State University. I promise to keep the existential philosophy to a minimum in my blog articles!

Rebecca Gibson

Rebecca Gibson

I joined the contact center consulting team at Interactive Intelligence three years ago, bringing with me my passion for contact center strategic and operational improvement. With over 20 years in the industry, I love spending time on the front line learning from agents, and grappling with the tough issues that contact center leaders face. Prior to Interactive, I worked in the outsourcing, consulting, and behavioral health industries in a variety of roles in training, program management, and operations management. Today, I work with customers to establish inspiring quality and voice-of-the-customer programs, implement cutting-edge voice recognition practices, and strengthen their overall customer and employee satisfaction.

Ric Kosiba

Ric Kosiba

I joined Interactive Intelligence in August 2012 as part of the Bay Bridge Decision Technologies acquisition. I helped found that company back in 2000 and thoroughly enjoyed working with our brilliant development and operations research team, which helped us become the leading U.S. supplier of long-term forecasting and planning solutions. In my current role as vice president of the Interactive Intelligence Bay Bridge Decisions Group, I’m responsible for the development and enhancement of our contact center capacity planning and analysis product line. I tripped into the call center industry about 22 years ago and can honestly say that I still love it. I hold an M.S.C.E., B.S.C.E., and Ph. D in Operations Research and Engineering from Purdue University (go Boilers!). I reside in Maryland with my wife and four children. I love being a dad and enjoy coaching kid’s football, basketball and lacrosse.

Russ Compton

Russ Compton

I recently joined the Interactive Intelligence team as part of the OrgSpan acquisition in April 2014. Currently, I am the Solutions Marketing Manager for PureCloud Directory and PureCloud Unified Communications, where I am tasked with positioning these solutions and delivering their unique message to our global audience. My previous experience offers a fairly broad scope of marketing activities including corporate branding, product visual creation, and web design. Although, my general focus for 10+ years has been centered around product marketing, communications, and product launches. I hold a bachelor’s degree from Clemson University and I call Raleigh, NC home. When I am away from work, I have a passion for spending time with my family (I’m slightly outnumbered by girls -three to one). I also love coaching youth soccer and I am up for any number of DIY weekend projects around the house.

Shanti Lall

Shanti Lall

I came to Interactive Intelligence in 2010 as an operational trainer for the Education department. For about a decade before that, I worked in a contact center, where I started out as a line-level agent taking customer service calls. I worked my way up to team lead, supervisor, and finally, project manager. I was doing quality management with a circa 1982 tape deck in a spare office with a speaker phone and workforce management in an Excel spreadsheet with about 5 billion lines of formula. Eventually we upgraded and brought in Interactive Intelligence. When I’m not training people who can relate to my former life, I’m traveling with my family.

Tim Passios

Tim Passios

I began working for Interactive Intelligence in 1998 and have a more than 20 years of experience in the telecommunications and software industries. I also worked in contact centers as an agent, supervisor, field trainer and manager for eight of those 20 years. In my current role at Interactive Intelligence I have constant interactions with customers, prospects, the media and industry analysts, which all help me to understand many different perspectives related to the contact center, unified communications and business process automation markets. When I’m not working I like to spend time with my family.

Todd Marthaler

Todd Marthaler

I am a 20 year veteran of the contact center field and a Contact Center Strategic Consultant with Interactive Intelligence since April 2013. Before joining Interactive, I was a business analyst and client services manager for a top Interactive Intelligence partner. I’ve managed several multichannel and multi-site contact center operations with Fortune 500 Companies in the retail, hospitality, utility, and service verticals. I have a passion for positioning the companies I service to deliver the ultimate customer experience. I also have expertise in IVR and call flow design, workforce management Implementation, workflow optimization, operations management, quality assurance and voice of the customer programs. In addition to speaking and consulting engagements, I frequently write for Contact Center Pipeline, present at partner events and deliver educational webinars. I’ve been an active member of ICMI and SOCAP. I hold a bachelor’s degree from Northwestern University in Journalism and a master’s certificate from St. Catherine’s University in Organizational Leadership.