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Lindsay McEwan, Vice president and managing director EMEA, Tealium

Path to power

 

I spent 23 years in the technology business and have thoroughly enjoyed the explosion of data that has taken place in that time. From my humble beginnings at Richmond Systems, I learnt the importance of tracking consumers and the detail behind the complaints they make to business. From that great company, I became fascinated with the concepts of building middleware environments to ensure companies could use the best products in the arsenal instead of a single solution tailored for them. After stints in the larger business such as Oracle, I focused on building smaller businesses who were targeted on consumer data, including an engagement at Neolane Software (now Adobe Campaign) and currently am in my fifth year at Tealium Software, the data supply chain specialists.

 

What has been the highlight of your career in the industry to date?

 

The trade sale to Adobe of Neolane was a great journey to be on, but that has paled into insignificance with the growth in data sources that have sprung up in the last few years. Tealium’s growth has been stratospheric. When I joined, there were 10 folks in Europe - now we count over 100 and to watch all those people grow has been a huge pleasure.

 

If you could give your younger self some advice about how to progress in this industry, what would it be?

 

Be yourself. Too many TLAs (three letter acronyms) are never necessary. Look after your teams, care for them, treat them well and they will look after the customers and the revenue.2018 was a confusing year with all the Brexit stagnation. However, we did not see any slowdown in businesses realising that consumer data was one of their most valuable assets. One that must be harnessed and safely curated in order to build trust with the consumer. Done well it can supercharge your relationship with your customers.

 

What do you expect 2019 to be like for the industry?

 

The explosion of data sources will continue and Tealium will continue to evolve to support them. As we move towards machine learning, artifical intelligence and automation, I expect many more ethical questions to arise from the implementation of these strategies in business.

 

Talent and skills are always a challenge to find - how are you tackling this in your organisation?

 

The ability to grow and support employees through their journey is key to solving this problem. Hiring is expensive and difficult to get right all the time. When you do have to hire outside, a proper selection process with multiple parties involved who have a point of view is critical. It’s better to grow and care for a individuals and help them move upwards and sometimes onwards into new arenas.

 

What aspect of data, analytics or their use are you most optimistic about and why?

 

As we move towards the use of machine learning and artificial intelligence, I am excited about new and innovative uses of data to personalise my interaction with a product or brand. Not just to allow them to sell me more, but understand me better and make life easier and significantly more interactive. Data and analytics technology/service provider

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