I started off in investment banking in Australia in securitisation, but wanted to understand better how businesses worked, so I moved to New York and joined PwC as a management consultant. We were developing strategies for clients that were looking to shift from being product-centric to customer-centric. Around this time, the internet bubble was forming and I was wooed by the opportunity to build start-up digital businesses in Silicon Valley. In 2001, I moved back to the UK and acquired expert understanding of data and analytics at dunnhumby, where I was responsible for developing customer-centric strategies for clients in the media, online and financial services verticals. I’m now at Channel 4, where we are using data to redefine how we acquire/commission content with production companies through to how we promote our content through to how we monetise.
The unique opportunity to work in a complete “greenfield site” at Channel 4 and now to reflect on how the capability has matured and become a global benchmark for international broadcasters.
Understand the business outcomes that each function is trying to achieve and become more visual in your communication style. It can be quite a complex field, so spend time learning how to simplify concepts.
With GDPR rolling out, I was very much expecting a greater shake-out of the industry.
I believe we will start to move beyond some of the hype of AI and begin to see practical use cases where tangible business value can be demonstrated. GDPR will most likely begin to shake-out the adtech, martech and data aggregation eco-systems.
Acquire: We invested in academic collaborations with universities to bring in high potential talent and then focused on a three-year, on-the-job training program. Retain: Created R&D safe spaces in the roadmap to allow the team to explore and experiment with emerging techniques to create a continual learning environment, while finding creative ways to link the research to business outcomes. Outside-In: Recruit from outside the sector as it allows you to ask the novice questions no-one else wants to ask and brings in external thinking when solving business problems.
Figuring out genuinely how to deploy AI at scale in a creative organisation as this will help break down some of the organisational barriers and potentially open up new collaborations.