On Thursday 10 October, the Young MCA hosted James Peckham, a partner from salesforce focusing on Digital Innovation / Transformation. Salesforce has been voted by Forbes as the most innovative company in the world for 3 years, so James was in a prime position to let the Young MCA know about the current and future innovations in technology.
He started setting the scene by talking about the Fourth Industrial Revolution, the era of connection. The first three revolutions being Steam, Electricity & Computing. James framed these periods in a very interesting way, talking about the economic concept of scarcity. He explains that in this new globally connected era, product innovation is ubiquitous. The scarcity has moved from centered around a product to a customer. The digital age is all about connecting people to the product. People are offering services/experiences and it is this which gives the competitive advantage.
He then went on to talk about the market trends shaping business today. He split these into 4 areas:
Service is the Products – Its not about what you are selling, it’s about the customer experience you are providing.
Racing for Relevance – This experience needs to be relevant to your customer to cut through the noise of the information age. A great example given was a company allowing you to buy a pint for someone anywhere in the world, giving the experience of friendship of giving
Employee Experience – Employees are increasingly expecting more from the places they work. People want to be doing meaningful work for a company with a real purpose. Companies need to put people in the right roles and have real social purpose.
New Decision making – Using AI to have greater insight and visibility when making decision
To bring the conversation back to how this applies to the consulting world, James started to talk about how you approach a digital strategy project for a company. Whether that be how to connect to the C-suite, the share premium offered from digital or the difference between a Renovate or a Transcend strategy. Do you look to improve your current business offering and structure or completely change it? The overarching message from all of this was that companies which build their business structure around customers experience, at all touch points, are more likely to succeed in this digital age.
What really enriched this talk was the large number of examples on real companies embodying these principles. Whether it be Amazon business model to farm data or the Netflix strategy of renovate & transcend in its early day. James provided some real insight into how digital is completely changing the way business operate and where it might be going in the future.
The great attendance and feedback from the audience shows that this is an area which young management consultants are interested in. We look looking forward to the next event in our Tech Series: AI \ Transforming Business.
Words by Chris O’Connor, Vendigital.