As of early in 2017, the ParkMan app has been in use in Italy, and currently works in three cities with more on the way. Our Country Manager for Italy, Francesco, our born and bred Sicilian is the reason Italy is one of the six countries where drivers can park with our parking app.
Francesco has lived and worked all over Europe, but carries his home country with him wherever he goes. When he’s travelling, he sends us beautiful pictures from Italy that make us smile or frown, depending on how jealous we get.
Want to know where the world’s most expensive parking spots are? Read our compilation of interesting parking facts.
We interviewed Francesco to ask him about his time so far at ParkMan. So Francesco, what’s your role in the company?
“I am the Country Manager for Italy. In short, I take care of business development over there with both private and public sectors. Basically, I do everything needed for the Italian market. It’s a whole array of different tasks: lots of administrative work is involved and it’s also my job to make sure that the company is run properly in Italy. There’s a lot of traveling and face-to-face meetings included in my work, which I like.
I love taking care of many different things. Sometimes people think that you should become a specialist at just one thing and focus on that. Instead, I prefer learning everything I don’t know, so that I can challenge myself and improve.”
When and how did you end up working at ParkMan?
“My arrival at ParkMan at the beginning of 2016 was a combination of chance, luck and good timing. For a while, I had been looking for a job that would give me real purpose. I wanted to join a cause rather than just a company. After finding out about the position and meeting the founders, I got the feeling that this could be my place where I could help shape the company into something successful and make a difference. I was, and still am, very excited about ParkMan’s mission.
I have always been a bit of a nomad, I’ve lived and worked in several different countries in very different working environments. I’m always in search of new things, both personally and professionally. My background is more or less in international companies of varying sizes, operating in the Internet sector. The fact that I’ve worked in diverse roles and companies definitely helps me with all the tasks I cover at ParkMan.”
Describe your typical day at the office.
“A typical workday is a really long day! I try to be available whenever a customer needs me to be, which may be at 8 am or at 10 pm. So my day can stretch from dusk till dawn.
I try to be as organized as possible. I believe good structure is essential for good performance so I divide my week into days when I focus on one particular task only. One day is for sales, one for administration, calling, customer support et cetera. Without that kind of a week structure, I think I would be lost.”
How do you see the parking industry change within the next, say, 5 years?
“The near future is definitely interesting. There’s a lot of guessing, but data also indicates that big changes are ahead. We’ve learned in the past few years that things that seemed impossible have actually become possible. I recently sat in a car that drove itself!
Parking will become more and more organised, and that will in turn release space to the reorganization of cities. While there’s going to be more cars on the roads globally, I believe that there will be less cars on the roads in Western cities when we move more and more towards shared mobility. Changes in parking will stem from changes in how people live in urban environments, and how companies and cities manage parking. I think parking will become more of a resource in city management rather than a way to make money.”
What’s your favorite thing about working at ParkMan?
“The best thing about working at ParkMan is that I get to learn something new almost every day. There’s always the chance get out of my comfort zone, to try to solve new problems and challenge the things that I know, or think I know. I get to improve constantly. The job also requires me to travel to the most beautiful country in the world quite often! ParkMan will play a big part in reshaping cities, and I feel like I’m a part of something bigger. I’m also happy to be doing something for my country.”
What are you looking forward to in the near future?
“I’m very excited about the plans that we have made for the near future. Now there are some areas in Italy that ParkMan is active in, and although I’m focused on the things at hand, I’m also looking forward to seeing how the market will look like at the end of the year.
My plan was always to go abroad, work and learn things, and then put my skills into action to do something good for my home country. That’s something that I am doing right now at ParkMan, and I couldn’t be happier about it.”
Introducing our awesome team
We don’t want ParkMan to be just a faceless parking app, so we literally want to give you a face to the name – or faces, actually. That’s why we’re introducing our team of talented individuals who work everyday to ensure that our mobile parking solution is the best thing that’s ever happened to parking. These are the people behind ParkMan – our crew that codes, draws, writes, calls, talks and innovates restlessly to create the best possible app and the best possible parking experience we can give.