Interviews – Media – Henry Martinez

Henry Martinez is responsible for all Discovery Networks’ cable channels in Latin America and Iberia. He was born in Cuba and grew up in Colombia and Brazil. He majored in communications at Los Angeles’ Pepperdine University, before going on to do an MBA at the University of Miami in Florida

New title: Senior vice president and general manager of Discovery Networks Latin America/Iberia

Former title:Vice president, affiliate sales and operations

Time with company:Six years

Reasons for changing position?
It was a natural internal move for me – another step up the ladder of a great company.

What are your new responsibilities?
Overall management, and profit and loss responsibility for our existing business units in Latin America, Spain and Portugal. Oversight of all functional areas of the company and evaluation of new market opportunities.

What will you miss most?
The client relationships I have built and the frequent interaction with so many people in different countries.

What will you miss least?
Having to turn off a client’s signal for non-payment.

What are you most excited about?
Fostering an environment of employer of choice in a highly competitive Labour market. Growing and strengthening our wholly owned and joint-venture brands. ColLabourating with our advertising team in building our revenue base. Identifying and developing new product lines for digital offerings and interactive television as technology evolves and is implemented in our region.

What are you least excited about?
Politics. The ever-growing list of phone calls to make and e-mails to answer.

What are your personal ambitions?
To create an environment that fosters growth opportunities for others in the organization. To cultivate a team-driven, self-motivated environment. To grow our presence in the Latin America and Iberia regions and make our company a successful, well-diversified business.

What are your ambitions for the company?
We want to be recognized as the dominant provider of high-quality, factual content in our region. To this end, we’re developing a thematic bouquet of offerings to provide a well-defined programme variety within several programmeming genres. We’re also implementing a successful Internet-based component and are exploring new opportunities afforded by technological developments, such as interactive television applications. We’re constantly looking for business opportunities in a variety of industry sectors.

Any pearls of wisdom for getting on in a career?
Always go the extra mile and focus on the result, not the process. Balance your life with other things and people that make you happy outside of your work. If you don’t enjoy your job, the culture and the people around you, find a new job.

What’s the worst job you’ve ever done?
Working as a janitor of the guys’ dorm at university – cleaning up after 18 and 20 year old college men.

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