When your passion meets your 9 to 5

Finding your passions

Is finding joy in your job key to work-life balance? Many of us spend around 250 waking days at work each year, so it has to be important. Linking your personal passions with your day job can unlock hidden pockets of job satisfaction and joy. Jeremy (head of marketing at Origin) tells us how his love for the ‘connected home’ has powered his career for 15 years.

An aspiring entrepreneur

It was back in the 90’s, not long after starting my professional career in marketing when I first developed a business plan for a side-hustle.

I wanted to do more. And I knew what I loved most. My plan foresaw the growth in internet connectivity of home devices – what we now might call the digital, smart or ‘connected home’. With more and more devices becoming connected, a world of new experiences in the home would inevitably open up.

My business plan put me right in the middle of the action.

Jeremy Weiss, Group Manager of Marketing at Origin

From the simplicity of a text message letting me know that the washing machine had finished, to the ability to turn cooling on or off remotely, to the wonders of streaming television. I shudder now trying to imagine how my 7 year old might cope without his favourite on-demand TV… How much things have changed.

Where did my passion fit in?

With this exciting innovation would come inevitable complexity. For those less tech savvy, or those not affluent enough to afford the dream of full home automation, I would do the hard work for them.

I was inundated by requests from friends and family. They wanted me to help source hardware, connect and configure. To make things easy. When technology makes life complex, there is always a better way.

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Fifteen years on, I do sometimes wonder what might have been if I made that leap.

The transition to a senior marketing career

Although I saw opportunity, I realised that focus would bring me more long-term joy. I buckled up, and built a professional career in services marketing.

15 years later I’ve spent time at large organisations like Telstra, GE and now Origin. Continuing the tech evolution has not only siphoned a considerable portion of my disposable income… It has remained at the core of my focus as a marketing leader.

Technology has shaped the way marketers and brands seek to attract and engage customers. Across my team at Origin, we strive to deliver the best experiences – it’s what our customers expect and deserve.

As the marketing leader for one of Australia’s most valuable brands, these days I spend lots of my own time pondering how the growth in connected devices and the evolution of technology can enable improvements to how we communicate with our customers around Australia.

Connected TV and marketing tech

“Martech” (marketing technology) is making it possible to reach customers in more relevant ways, and not just in emerging digital channels. More and more, data and smart targeting allow us to fine-tune the messages we serve up, even in channels that have traditionally been mass-market broadcast.

Connected television not only allows people to tune in to the shows they want, when then want them – but also for brands to make their ads more relevant.

This is a good thing for our business, because we can minimize wasted resources – but also for customers who don’t want to see irrelevant advertising. Our modern lives are noisy enough.

Energy home management

As an employee of Australia’s leading energy retailer, I’m starting to join the dots on how Origin may be able to scale its presence in the home.

We recently launched our Origin Broadband service, with our top nbn™ plans offering pretty snappy download speeds – the sorts of speeds that could comfortably power the streaming and gaming needs of connected families using a bunch of devices.

We’ve been providing customers with energy usage profiles that breakdown electricity costs within the home, so that you can see exactly which devices are costing the most to run.

And we have been running some cool trials with air conditioners (traditionally very energy hungry) that allow Origin to monitor and modify the temperature of devices on hot days and reward customers with bill credits.

It won’t be too long before Origin is able to combine all of these smarts into seamless experiences in the home, tailored to suit the needs of different households. 

Which brings me to here

The connected home is well and truly here to stay, and the future is exciting. And even though I didn’t pursue that side-hustle all those years ago, I’m finally getting to play in the smart home space as a data driven marketer and an employee at Australia’s leading energy retailer.

Jeremy Weiss leads the Marketing Team at Origin.

People powered

Origin Energy is made up of a team of over 4000 people, each with their own story. We’re Australia’s leading energy retailer and we’re striving to get energy right for our customers, communities and planet.

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