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The Digital Transformation Age Podcast

This podcast is about getting to grips with the transformation that will affect us all.

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Chapter Six – The X Man with Brian Solis

The experience customers have with a brand or a product determines their satisfaction and whether they return or not. Quality is important, a good product is important, but a bad customer experience can easily wipe out all your efforts. Many underestimate the importance of having the end user experience front and centre, when developing your products, and your brand. On the other hand, those who get it right prosper. Brian Solis Brian Solis One man who understands this to a fault is the author of a book dedicated to this principle: X: The Experience When Business Meets Design In this book Brian “introduces the importance of experiences as the new brand, bringing the worlds of CX, UX and BX together to re-imagine the customer journey and lifecycle.” Define The Experience Imagine an experience style guide where everybody within the company knows how to treat the customer and where the customer is within its lifecycle. It is amazing that, when you listen to Brian or read the book, there are so many companies out there which do not have this as their first order of business. Then again, this might make sense when you consider that some elements in our society do not move as fast as you’d might think. Technology does move quickly, and as individuals we adapt quickly enough. But the big machines which keep the companies running have difficulty keeping up. Think sans Tech In essence, if we can image the customer journey without the use of technology, we can understand this element in a new way. Or rather, in quite an old way. The way customers were treated in that local store on mainstreet, where s/he was treated as royalty. Simply because the owner (and therefore all his personnel) understood the importance of a happy customer. He put that customer front and centre, made them feel like the most important person in the world. As a consequence, the advertising this customer would do based on her/his experience would be priceless. And odds would be s/he would return, again, and again. I hope you enjoy the conversation I had with Brian, I sure did. The post Chapter Six – The X Man with Brian Solis appeared first on The Digital Transformation Age Podcast.


17 Feb 2016

Rank #1

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The Connected CEO – Chapter Five w/ Peter Sorgenfrei

Not being able to work within one single environment as a company is still a challenge for most companies, if not all. Even a start-up like Somewhere has to deal with this. And even if you have your document management in house, you still have to deal with different external entities, and, invariably, they use different tools, this is unavoidable. Only *.csv is a commonly accepted format which allows interaction, but beyond than that.., it tends to get tricky. This is something that is still happening, and despite the progress we make, we still run around from platform to platform. Which, in turn, makes it a challenge to have a 100% controlled information environment within a business. The advancement of API’s might be able create a layer where these different platforms are able to communicate which each other. This would help a lot for future developers. But we’re not there yet, if ever. Peter Sorgenfrei Peter Sorgenfrei It’s not about technology, it’s how we use technology. Peter Sorgenfrei is a prolific connector. He’s the kind of person who knows how to use a platform to it’s fullest. In his current position as CEO for Somewhere, this is a very convenient skill to have. Somewhere “helps you augment your resume with a profile that shows how you think about work.” This is stimulating in a couple of ways, the first that springs to my mind is a less formal platform. LinkedIn is packed to the rafters with rules, how to’s and protocols. The sheer amount of “how to use linkedin” articles shows that you can’t just hop on and use it. Still, Somewhere allows you to showcase what it is that you do, what you think, even how you feel. All in all, it feels much more human, which is nice. Trust and Freedom This discussion is broad one, one in which the complete lack of structure in this podcast allows us to let the discussion move from how we use technology, to the human connections and the development of how we connect all these “things” in our day-to-day lives. And yes, this does include work. And, as with many conversations about Digital Transformation, the human connection comes up. In particular about how we go about treating employees. When trust is wanted, trust must be given. With allowing certain freedoms in the workplace, leadership can easily, and quickly determine whether or not someone is a good fit within a company. And let’s face it, in the end, what you want is people around you who fit well enough. And this goes both way, as an employer, if you have that luxury, finding a good fit will make the difference in a happy working environment and just work. I hope you enjoy the conversation: The post The Connected CEO – Chapter Five w/ Peter Sorgenfrei appeared first on The Digital Transformation Age Podcast.


10 Feb 2016

Rank #2

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The Heroine – Chapter Four with Céline Schillinger

Calling Céline Schillinger a (Digital) Heroine is no exaggeration. She is transforming one of the heaviest regulated industries on the planet, pharmaceuticals. How? By noticing a problem and dealing with it. And in doing so she has managed to touch an astounding number of lives. I’m lucky to know Céline for some years now, and her first story, that of WiSP (Women in Sanofi Pasteur), was an intriguing one, not very well covered in this chapter, however. Reason for that? Céline is a busy woman, she’s done a lot more since then. Céline Schillinger Since I’ve met her she’s moved from France to the US, Boston. There she’s heads up Quality Innovation & Engagement. An interesting position, and an even more interesting combination. When we know pharma is (one of) the most regulated industries, and Quality one of the most buttoned down departments in any industry. Then it’s safe to assume that Quality within Pharma is a very, very serious and strict business. And then the idea of placing such a disrupter as Céline (a registered Change Agent) in there.., well, I’d say somebody made a brave decision. As it turns out, Social Business and the Digital Transformation can (and should) happen everywhere. In fact, if you want to make a point, if you want to learn it the hard way and prove it can be done, then that’s probably the best place to start. It’s like New York, if you can make it there, you can make it anywhere. The Heroine a woman admired for her courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities So why this title then? Anybody can come in and have an effect on a department. Well, yes. But not everybody does, in fact, almost nobody does, and certainly not on a level as my guest. Did I mention that she was chosen as Woman of the Year in 2013 by La Tribune? Well, she was… And I think her Break Dengue campaign (also) proves my point. Having now reached close to a quarter million likes on Facebook, it is one of the most successful campaigns out there. It even won an award, and Céline had been invited to explain herself during a TEDx Talk. Not bad for a corporate rebel. You can connect with Céline on LinkedIn, Twitter, and her blog; We Need Social. Enjoy the interview. The post The Heroine – Chapter Four with Céline Schillinger appeared first on The Digital Transformation Age Podcast.


4 Feb 2016

Rank #3

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The Digital Humanist – Chapter Three with Luis Suarez

Luis Suarez is driven by the human element in The Digital Transformation Age. Despite it being driven mainly by technological advancements. Often these advances are inventions derived from a need to enhance something. The first computer was the size of a small room, now we wear a computer on our wrist which is many multiple times more powerful. The desire to have a technological advantage over a competitor is also a major motivation to come up with “new stuff”. Money, after all, is what makes the world go round. And Silicon Valley floats on the stuff. Personal gain (by reputation, power and/or money) seems to be a powerful motivator. There is a documentary; “For all Mankind“, it’s about the Moon landings. It’s a beautiful docu, all original footage and sounds, long too. It’s mesmerising to see what man can do when they set their minds to it. But.., “we” didn’t go to the Moon for mankind.., we did it to beat the Soviets, to show who’s boss. That’s why… “For the betterment of mankind” is usually a distant third, or fourth on the list, if it makes the list at all. Upgrades and Software New software comes out and new hardware gets upgraded, and we want it all.., and that’s OK I guess. But, it happens in the enterprise too. Software gets bought, and in most cases rolled out throughout the company, because it’s new, and good, and it will help the company forward.., and makes us money. Yet, it so often doesn’t. Luis Suarez Anyway.., Elsua (Luis op Twitter: @elsua), the dude who is living without e-mail for a couple of years now, is one of those people who understands it is about people. Humans make the change, not machines, corporations, microchips, or social platforms. Humans. And that makes sense. A lot of sense. If Apple brings out a new iPhone, and nobody buys it, does it even exist? (as in, if a tree falls in the forest… ah.., I know, but you get what I mean) My point here being, the iPhone is so incredibly successful because humans buy and use it (of course it’s a great device, and people want to use it). Many social collaboration platforms have the same dilemma; if nobody uses them, do they even exist. And to this, the answer is a resounding; “No”. Communities And communities are made up of humans (it’s what we do as a species, it’s how we’ve survived for as long as we did). And that’s what makes it real, people using the tools of the 21ste century with habits more than 200.000 years old. The conversation with Luis, therefore, is about exactly that; how do we instinctively communicate with each other. And how can we use modern communication devices use to our benefit. It’s about connecting. Listen to the podcast The post The Digital Humanist – Chapter Three with Luis Suarez appeared first on The Digital Transformation Age Podcast.


20 Jan 2016

Rank #4

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The Marketing Man – Chapter Two with Mark Schaefer

Talking to Mark is always a pleasure. I can’t remember an occasion where any interaction with the man was negative. Chapter Two in this series is, for that reason, a good conversation. And that’s what I’m looking for, good conversations. w/ Mark Schaefer Mark Schaefer (@MarkWSchaefer) is a blogger, author, keynote speaker and an educator, but first and foremost.., he’s a Marketing Man. With his books and his (free) blog he’s shown to be a guy who “gets it”, and as a highly wanted keynote speaker and educator, he’s proven to also be quite capable of communicating his knowledge and experience to an audience, which makes him stand out and a perfect guest. Getting Digital Transformation I know that “getting it” is somewhat of a whimsical term.., but that is what this modern age is truly all about. In fact, any big change is about getting what the change is about, and not just naming the symptoms, it’s about understanding the fundamental reasons of these changes. What caused them to happen, how is it affecting us, or your business, and most important, what do you need to do to survive this change. The Content Code This is a great example of my earlier point. In this book Mark goes into the changes in our world from a (online) marketing perspective. Despite the fact that the online world becomes more and more saturated, there is always a way to get out on top. Consequently we talk about how companies (and people) don’t keep up with the times. The Content Code explains that we think we play by the rules, but these rules change all the time, and by the time you think you get it, your probably already behind. Don’t worry, you’re not alone, many play the catch-up game. However, some don’t and fall behind, then again, some work hard to stay ahead of the game, and they’re the once with the advantage. Having this discussion with Mark gives a bit more of an insight into what mindset you need to have in this Digital Transformation. Listen to the podcast The post The Marketing Man – Chapter Two with Mark Schaefer appeared first on The Digital Transformation Age Podcast.


13 Jan 2016

Rank #5