Aye Aye, Fit Like?

Kia ora koutou! You’ve ventured to the virtual homeworld of writer, journalist, editor, digital engagement expert, product/project/people manager and all-round geek Mike Kilpatrick. As they say in his native north east of Scotland, ‘aye aye, fit like?’ (Hello, how are you?)

Mike Kilpatrick in his
Mike Kilpatrick in all his bearded glory

Mike started in the pharmaceutical industry after graduating with an honours degree in Chemistry in the 1990s – but not before he spent time as a student politician, working as part of the National Union of Students Scotland executive committee and standing on the stage at the Caird Hall in Dundee presenting to 1500 new students as part of his duties as President of the student union at Abertay University.

While his time doing that was fun and rewarding it was the Y2K Bug that gave him his first opportunity to work with technology, which has been his passion since.

Along with a few hundred colleagues from GlaxoSmithKline he worked ridiculously long hours to implement a new laboratory system that was Y2K compliant before December 31st, 1999. Mike then went on to project manage the implementation of phases two and three of the project for the Montrose site where he worked. That’s where he wrote and reviewed his first Functional Requirements Spec and Communications Plan.

During his time at GSK he managed large teams, the technical document review process and was part of a side leadership team that represented his department working on the process to engage with the workers regarding the potential sale of the site and possible redundancies.

After moving to New Zealand in 2005 Mike became disillusioned by the science industry and, after successfully negotiating to end a strike at his place of employment, he retrained as a journalist at Auckland University of Technology.

He spent the next seven years writing, editing and curating sports content and writing about movies, television, music and technology. The highlight of his time as a sports journalist was interviewing All Blacks legends Buck Shelford and Richie McCaw and covering the 2011 Rugby World Cup for Yahoo! New Zealand.

For the last few years Mike has been the New Zealand Market Lead for Microsoft News, managing all aspects of Microsoft News in the country. Under his charge the MSN New Zealand website became the most engaging English-language MSN site in the world.

His role was recently disestablished after Microsoft moved all MSN websites to automated curation instead of carefully crafted human editorial curation.

It marked the end of an era and Mike is now looking for new opportunities to use his transferable skills – including writing, editing, people management, project management, product management, program management and content management – in an organisation which matches his morals and beliefs in making the world a better place.

He also has an amazing story to tell on how his life hit rock bottom in 2014 and how he turned it around and lost nearly 80kgs in an attempt to become a pro-wrestler at 45 years old.

For more of Mike’s fun side – including his wrestling adventures – check the About section.

To read Mike’s latest writing The Vogon Poetician is the place for you.

To pretend you really want to hear about the plans for another podcast then pop in and have a virtual Pan Galactic Gargleblaster in Bletherin’ With The Big Man.

If you want to get hold of Mike for any reason (unless you’re one of the former commenters on his Yahoo! New Zealand or Stuff blogs) then head to Contact and send him a message.