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The global telecoms connector

Elie Hanna, EMBA 02
By Damon van der Linde

50 under 50: Corporate leadership

Elie Hanna, EMBA 02 “I was very lucky to study at Concordia in an environment full of people from different industries, diverse backgrounds, and different perspectives. It made me better equipped to work in executive positions within the company.”

Elie Hanna’s career has shown what can be achieved as a result of being dedicated to an organization while also being open to new opportunities.

At the Ericsson telecommunications company, Hanna has held a number of high-profile roles truly spanning the globe. After some years in Canada, he worked in Algeria and Egypt, then Sweden, the Philippines and the Pacific Islands.

Today, Hanna is Ericsson’s president for North Latin America, taking on the challenge of building a business in a region entirely new to him.

“The telecommunication we do is connecting everyone and transforming businesses all around the world. We are in the middle of the fourth industrial revolution with 5G becoming a reality. I feel energized coming to work knowing that I’m contributing to a good cause and a great change to all of us,” he said.

Concordia’s contribution to success         

“I was very lucky to study at Concordia in an environment full of people from different industries, diverse backgrounds, and different perspectives. It made me better equipped to work in executive positions within the company.”

Proudest moment of his career

“In 2010, I worked on the transformation program in Sweden when Ericsson was undergoing financial difficulties. Ericsson embarked on a journey to reframe its strategy and become a leader in the telecom industry, spanning services, software and hardware. We needed to come together in order to streamline the whole organization, so we could get back to growing.”

Humanitarian experience

“When there is a big disaster, communication networks are crucial for helping people and disaster relief teams. When I was in the Philippines, huge typhoons struck the country. The networks were down and we had to quickly deploy a special satellite network for emergency communication. I was also there for a major earthquake in Mexico City. As president in those regions at the time, I have played an important role in ensuring that the relief efforts went according to plan.”

Best career advice

“Don't be afraid to follow your dreams. It's good to have a vision of what you want to achieve in your career, and then navigate through it. Things will change as you go but, when you have a vision, you can also learn to adapt.”



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