Leaders in Tech and Ecommerce

Christopher Hatfield Head of eBusiness Oceania at Nestle

September 30, 2020 Alcott Global Season 1 Episode 41
Leaders in Tech and Ecommerce
Christopher Hatfield Head of eBusiness Oceania at Nestle
Chapters
Leaders in Tech and Ecommerce
Christopher Hatfield Head of eBusiness Oceania at Nestle
Sep 30, 2020 Season 1 Episode 41
Alcott Global

Nestle is a Swiss multinational & the world's largest food and beverage company. With more than 2000 brands and present in 187 countries worldwide Chris is responsible for the eCommerce, Digital technology delivery, innovation functions & building internal eBusiness capabilities across the Oceania region. Prior to this role,  Chris was based in Hong Kong with Estee Lauder Companies as Director of Digital Marketing Media and eCommerce across the Asia Pacific for Clinique. Launching more than 40 e-commerce sites across 8 markets. He has spent 18 years with Estee Lauder in various eCommerce, Marketing & Forecasting brand & corporate functions.

Discover more details here.

Some of the highlights of the episode:

  • [03:05] The difference between the market in the Asia Pacific and Oceania
  • [07:46] How e-commerce is different then circa 2006
  • [11:29] How digital platforms helped brands elevate their businesses
  • [24:03] Key advantages of Omnichannel
  • [36:29] FInding the balance between soft skills and hard skills

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Show Notes Transcript

Nestle is a Swiss multinational & the world's largest food and beverage company. With more than 2000 brands and present in 187 countries worldwide Chris is responsible for the eCommerce, Digital technology delivery, innovation functions & building internal eBusiness capabilities across the Oceania region. Prior to this role,  Chris was based in Hong Kong with Estee Lauder Companies as Director of Digital Marketing Media and eCommerce across the Asia Pacific for Clinique. Launching more than 40 e-commerce sites across 8 markets. He has spent 18 years with Estee Lauder in various eCommerce, Marketing & Forecasting brand & corporate functions.

Discover more details here.

Some of the highlights of the episode:

  • [03:05] The difference between the market in the Asia Pacific and Oceania
  • [07:46] How e-commerce is different then circa 2006
  • [11:29] How digital platforms helped brands elevate their businesses
  • [24:03] Key advantages of Omnichannel
  • [36:29] FInding the balance between soft skills and hard skills

Follow us on:
Instagram: http://bit.ly/2Wba8v7
Twitter: http://bit.ly/2WeulzX
Linkedin: http://bit.ly/2w9YSQX
Facebook: http://bit.ly/2HtryLd

Speaker 1:

Hello, and welcome to our leaders in tech and e-commerce podcast. I'm your host Kyler and I'm from alcohol global executive search. Our mission is to connect professionals in the tech and eCommerce ecosystem in Asia, by bringing for some of the most interesting stories from the leaders in the industry. I'm happy to have a reverse. Christopher had to be head of e-business Oceana of Nestle. Nestle is headquartered in Switzerland and is the world's largest food and beverage company with more than 2000 brands and present in 187 countries. Worldwide, Chris is responsible for e-commerce digital technology delivery, innovation functions and building internal e-business capabilities across Oshana region. Prior to this room, CRISPR space of Hong Kong with Estee Lauder companies as the director of digital marketing media, and e-commerce across Asia Pacific, both clinic launching modern 40 eCommerce sites across the markets. He has spent 18 years with Estee Lauder in various functions, such as eCommerce marketing, forecasting brands and corporate functions. Hey , Christopher pleasure to have you here today. Great to be here. Thanks for having me. Great. So Christopher, maybe that'd be a self introduction of yourself so that our audience can get to know you as well.

Speaker 2:

Absolutely. So my name's Chris Hatfield , I started my education with a degree in political science. So realizing I needed something a bit more commercial, I went back to university to gain my master's in commerce. My Korean background has been spent in luxury if CJ and retail, how do you more of a retail financial and forecasting lens, but for the last 15 years, I've focused more on digital transformation. Acceleration of e-commerce going back to probably establishing ability to sell us first direct to consumer eCommerce business nature , Pacific third market outside the UK and us in 2006, launched brands like Mac clinic and it's that loader and online as well as the operational division to support and service online delivery model. I then moved to Hong Kong to me first brand higher in digital and eCommerce in the APEC region to drive clinic forward, expand its digital acceleration and online footprint of lucky to be involved in some first to market industry launches launching one of the first luxury businesses on team or a rapid turn GS more in Korea. And then once he knew capabilities, direct models in Southeast Asia, the last three years, I've been based in Australia, heading up a business for Nestle across Yona , driving the eCommerce digital delivery and technology functions to the region.

Speaker 1:

Great. So we've got experienced hiring two regions over the past two decades, right? I'm sure we are definitely going to buy a lot of learning points within this podcast today. So having spent 18 years leading Asia Pacific for Estee Lauder and currently leading ocean alpha Nestle, right. What is the biggest differences you see between these two markets in your point of view?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I spent six years in the Asia Pacific region and three being back in Oceana when I first moved to Asia in 2011, I really see the biggest differences between the rapid speed of change, digital adoption of not only the consumer, but also within the businesses. In 2011, the markets were very evolved in social media adoption and mobile usage in Asia. Most people had skipped owning a PC and going straight to the mobile , uh, usage of local social platforms like line wave or [inaudible] extremely high. And they already were living their lives on , on social and mobile devices. However e-commerce besides Japan, Australia was not as developed in, in, in these countries. China's e-commerce as much like Taobao, very on official selling no cash. It was cash on delivery. Uh, there wasn't really a lot of financial payment integration setup and Timo had just launched, but they didn't really have any luxury brands selling so fast forward that within six years. So it was a massive acceleration of new platforms and customers across China, Korea, Southeast Asia. There was the decline of traditional social sites like Weibo and QQ and a massive rise of digital video platforms. We launched line launched in Taiwan, Southeast Asia. There was expansion of Lazada and xAPI and other social media platforms launching in China like sharp on shoe and, and others. Uh , I'd say that was probably the most difference between Australia and Asia of just that rapid speed of change and adoption in Australia, despite being an early adopter of digital and online, the retail landscape didn't undergo a large or significant changes markets like China with table Mikey, major inroads into traditional retail Australia, probably in that period was shopping overseas a little bit more, a little bit slower on the local e-commerce landscape change. And certainly , um, that was probably hindering a little bit of innovation and growth. But since returning to Australia, I've really noticed the fast track of the eCommerce capabilities within announcement of Amazon's arrival in market. We've seen an acceleration of really strategy across the retail landscape and acceleration of consumer need. And particularly through cupboard , uh , retailers are really update guidance on resources, strategy, prioritization, and rollout to some of our clicks and mortar businesses are really scaling and we're seeing a large increase also of resources around pure play retaliate as well. Also looking to, to build up this space. So I think Australia has undergone really rapid change in the loss of the three years. Well , so that's also quite a , quite a large change to the environment so many years , right ? How the consumers within different regions. Yeah, there was suddenly because of the evolution of a lot of the digital touchpoints and the channel expansion. Most of the interaction was happening for the first time digitally, a lot of consumers. So as it's rising middle class emerged, whereas emerging in throughout Asia, their first experiences might have been in a digital format. We might have launched via city mall into sort of T five to six cities in China where they wouldn't have had physical retail . So that was probably the first interaction that people were going to online for that first research around what product do I use for those that were leveraging what was happening on social, whatever , for instance we're talking about. So that was probably a accelerated need for brands to interact with these influences faster than probably it was happening in the Oceana markets that were more traditional market is still in print and TV, very brand led while people will be listening far more to, to users of the product, but also these, these rise of these influences as well. So that was probably a big learning and a big difference between the markets of , of that. The other major probably difference coming out of China was the consumer was traveling more now being exposed to different brands, whether that's through travel retail or in marketing, some of the key destinations like Japan and Korea, and that's what are experiencing for the first time, a different lens of products are suddenly follow the trends within these markets of Korea and Japan, and then not bringing them back into market. So it was quite an interesting followup to that of once people joined a brand and then connecting with them domestically after that. So that was something of a difference as well of the consumer journeys .

Speaker 1:

And you mentioned earlier that you have been tasked to launch the new eCommerce division of Estee Lauder back in 2006. Right? So we were just wondering, like, what was the thought process at the point of time since e-commerce was still a very new thing to the market at that point of time? Right. And what was the most interesting encounter you had at that time?

Speaker 2:

So they come us in Australia in 2006 was a very different landscape. Many of the early entrance into deck retail had closed with very large losses. It was post the.com boom. Everyone had attempted to start it , but there was some limitations when it came to broadband usage and penetration within the consumer. So there was a lot of dead bodies along the way. So to speak , there were more marketplaces and auction sites, a peer to peer selling, but it was not viewed by many people even internally for when I took the job as something that I'd certainly have a lot of career or long term success making the move, but I suddenly saw the future was coming. And I could see that a while . I want to be an entry of this because I could say what had happened in the us and UK and where they were moving to from an online channel perspective. The most interesting encounters I received personally, professionally was peer training. At that time, it was no real learning or university learning to be had around e-commerce. There was not a eCommerce one Oh one course that you could do. Certainly not a lot of online tools as well. So I had the support of local senior leadership, but also the global teams from the us and UK to really fast track model learning. If that letter was very progressive and they set up a standalone e-commerce division in the late nineties, I realized the fast track channel acceleration, they need to build specials capabilities in online and digital and operate more independently from the brand. The reason I think I did this was to focus more there, if it's on that and not get tied into the more traditional marketing efforts that was still driving the current business, but they had the lens on the, on the future. So exposure to some of the early pioneers of data, C commerce was a real benefit to my career and they've gone on to very senior roles with other companies. So SLO is a really great it's proved to be a great training ground for eCommerce fundamentals and talent that we'll spend a lot of time in the UK with the global team as well. And a lot of people came out to market as well. So I was able to establish that online business model based off what had worked in the us and UK. And there was a really opportunity to learn, spend time in a warehouse. I spent time really understanding the importance of fundamentals of building a right PNL , as well as looking at all things of how do we capture persistent ship orders, because we have to establish that business model within Australia as well. And then the fundamentals of managing a website, learning how to load products, categories online, managing the same and site refreshes and working with the production team on pushing sites live as well as QA testing from , from new site . So having that experience has really benefited me through the career in training, but also understanding what are the key areas to look at from a, all the way through, from lead generation to onsite experience, to business supporting and customer service. There are also real challenges in building a new business in a traditional retail environment. There were early concerns of online. So I would take away from an offline sale. We had a commission model in store for our consultants. So in the early days it was backing the right level of buying from the brands . This could not only add value and have that conversation about sales value, but compliment and build a brand. Mack was one of those brands that wasn't allowed to do traditional advertising and the digital platform enabled them to really build their customer loyalty base stuff, to do direct email marketing. And it really elevated their overall businesses. Mac cosmetics.com became a real destination for law was to find out what's new in market. Uh, we put exclusive products on there as well to make it a destination for, for the consumers. And ultimately it also benefited the business of people going into store and purchasing as well.

Speaker 1:

Interesting. So in 2006, your.com is more offer information site , or do you actually have a checkout function on the website itself?

Speaker 2:

We had brand thoughts before that, probably back to that in 2004, 2005, where we were doing CRM marketing for new launches and new information, the functionality of the first eCommerce site started in 2006 with Mac followed by chronic . We then rolled out to join Malone criminal mayor and Estee Lauder. So it was a direct business and we started to build and scale that business. It was probably the, there wasn't a lot of other avenues to some of these businesses to get to parts of Australia, a thought the direct businesses . So there was a good opportunity nos in that time also to, to reach new consumers. But also we were noticing then even back then of, of new customers were coming from where we had physical stores and supporting that. So it , it was , uh, it was fast tracking acceleration of mail that , uh, all those new businesses into the data state function.

Speaker 1:

Interesting. So you had actually seen the entire transformation of this industry, right? And since its very, very early days such as like 2004, 2006 and such. So we wanted to talk your thoughts about the economic strategy for brands right now, because we knew that Nestle had been investing in , in business for many years now, but unfortunately there are still many brands and sellers out there that are in the very early days in launching that e-business division. So what do you think is the most important thing for an organization to look up when they are still yet at the early stage of building?

Speaker 2:

Yeah. Great question. Firstly, it's acknowledging that this is something the business needs to do or wants to do. You might be in a product related business or service related business and that need for change or that top down need for change is usually what will drive a lot of the alignment and cultural change within that. So that's probably having that as an organization, understand by wanting to do it, then it's really how, or what do we do next establishing the right leadership first I'd personally get that in place first, you can start with a head of role of senior enough to build that roadmap probably at the senior leadership level. They won't know exactly what they want to do or where to play or how to win. And so you need that level of experience as well as authority to really set that plan in place, to achieve, buy in and then work on things like organizational design. I've seen a few times where companies maybe start with your org design first, but you may have talent and capabilities already in the company that you can evolve and train into this area or make it part of their role. As other parts of their role becomes less important should come before the cut . Definitely. And that, with that, I get asked a lot of questions. Should it be a standalone business or under sales or marketing? I've been in roles that have been under all different functions. I've been in standalone, I've worked on the marketing and I've worked on the sales that tell you on the complexity of the business model. Ultimately businesses need to assess whether change and scale can happen within is disruption to the ways they're working in mindset requirement to make this work and to drive this . If there's other barriers to that, then stand alone certainly is one way global businesses are always thinking potentially of growing local markets, but they want to centrally manage or they want to, or they're having trap trouble with operationally that to make local market needs, they may want to ensure brand consistency. They may want to ensure that they require a cross-market Sherry . So regional support might be required in this case, but I truly believe that capabilities around data, digital commerce need to be adopted by all. So however, when the bigger priorities and the business, without a dedicated team driving the agenda , it might not get the support needed. So that's probably one way to look at it to say, well, what is the urgency of this? And how do we fast track what we want to do in this area? Maybe a dedicated team to start with and then look to integrate into current teams and structures as well. In my first year at a sell order of Australia, when I was set up the day to say business. So it was myself and one web designer or a team of two. We built some scale in the business and I was able to gain approval for a further two e-commerce managers to come on board. After we had delivered a decent amount of sales to prove the business case. So this always happens of , do we build the lodge team first or, or come afterward to being agile to the a smaller team to start with is probably a better way to go. And then you're not over committing resources investment because you can lose a lot of money. And quite quickly, if you wipe down by too much head count, as well as not the right resources to drive the business forward. I think once this is in place important , then to set the strategy, what are the priorities? What are the road map resources required? And twice I at that senior level was best because if you just hire an eCommerce manager at a junior level, they might not be able to have that conversation to drive the right outcome and the right resources for what you want to do as a business and help you get there.

Speaker 1:

So, Christopher, I understand that in the earlier days of building the vision for multiple companies, right, you had been in touch with bear , like maybe say team or Rakuten in different countries. So how to organization actually choose their partners or even their channels to go online with, or they should adopt a more shoot and pray kind of strategy.

Speaker 2:

I think you want to be strategic in, in the footprint that you play in to start with, who are the major opportunities with? When I first moved back to Australia, we had two Nigeria Rachel's that were in the online. We didn't have a lot of footprint or presence in others. We wanted to evaluate the opportunities within the curriculum , what might relevance for the individual categories or portfolios. So especially identifying what the footprint is of the landscape across Asia. There are different channels that we're working for each different markets. So Japan was a very direct to consumer market that people were happy to go to clinic.co.jp and purchased off. We had a direct business in China, but it was very expensive to drive lead generation. We were losing money out of it. Customers were shopping more onto Taobao and they need to Timor and Jingdong and other. So it was really where the consumers were and what made the most sense for the scale and opportunity. So firstly, I would say map out

Speaker 1:

That landscape

Speaker 2:

Of clicks and mortar, retailer.com , if those are in those markets, pure play retailers and then direct to consumer have that sort of view of what each role of channel play and defy those, because that will also guide your go to market plan with each there's certainly will be larger plays with an agent . It's a no brainer. If you're in Singapore, you have certain categories are going to be where you play, but there might be opportunity also to have direct businesses, they'll find smaller players and you want to build those as well because that minimizes your risk. But you also want to make sure there is differentiation of channel and execution as well. Then you have to look at within nature , those channels, what is the playbook at which to win within those many have different models and businesses. So it might be different strategies required within them. Some have the ability to do more investment in search versus others might have different opportunities with content and brand pages and things like that and different offers. So it's definitely been from there developing a channel customer plan attached to that. So I would say stop being very strategic. If you play in so many places, do you think you'd do differently, bring down your resources to allocate to where the

Speaker 1:

Makes sense makes sense. Thanks for the advice. So consumer experience and brand loyalty is definitely one of the most important thing for any brands right now . So in your opinion, how should a brand be strategizing its eCommerce strategy to really have control over consumer experience and still getting the best results out of it?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, fundamentally I believe that commerce strategy should always reinforce broader brand and business strategies. You have to respect the brands. They know if you're in a service model or something like that, then there's still an element of your brand that you're trying to communicate and ensure that is being met, whether that's a service or, or product, it can be definitely challenging. Certainly when you have a matrix organization or roles and responsibilities, particularly in areas such as [inaudible] , you might have a legacy wise of working. So who's responsible for media content creation approval of brand programs. There's always that sort of challenge. When you try to put together, I think almost plan when you might not even control the types of content you're being credit . You need a number of images created for the thought experience or brand landing pages. But we went through this when we create a team or hydrate to develop a brand playbook with our creative team, work with an agency design and create a UX experience. This was all from scratch because there really was no roadmap to develop a , a marketplace or IPO play thought experience. We all had just, they just see businesses as a time. So that's suddenly something that is ensure that your brand is being reflected on the right channel, but within the boundaries of, of whatever that customer or channel is, I've seen examples of commerce team sending out an email on a Monday full apply a brand marketing email on a Tuesday. The customer just doesn't know what to think or feel it's important to set those clear roles and responsibilities and collaborate on a joint calendar. When , when there is overlap of use of the database, how often frequency, all of that is really important. Then if your consumer relationship design by customer. So a lot of business today has been done on Timor and Lazada . You need to ensure you're leveraging the platform for suboptimal cause you don't control own that relationship effectively the relationships with the customer, yes, they're buying your product, but you don't own the data. So it's really ensure that you set brand standards and your consistency is being met across those channels that you play. In. Another question I do get asked a lot is what do we need the data to see when we have large retailers in market or they've got a large footprint. There's certainly some challenges with data. See , when you are setting one up, like can be more costly to run. They take a longer time to build that scale and build that relationship with your database and your consumers. And you re required to more financial liability analysis to identify the benefits. But you do have the opportunity within direct business to own that direct relationship. You can also establish a brand flagship of information. You are in the relationship and you're able to differentiate experience through personalized and customization. So when we've launched data , say businesses, that's next slide , baby, or key Kat Chocolatory in Australia. They suddenly being differentiated to what is even a traditional retail model. So we can add value to the consumer, but also bring them something that they didn't already all content get through normal channels. So that's always a way to own that consumer experience and use the brand website, whether that's data say , or just say a marketing website for that purpose as well. Definitely . One of the most important thing to look out for when you, when it comes to the implementing per se mapping the consumer journey, if your brand or your business is any engagement across those touch points, whether that's online or offline or both understand that into place . First is really important. We know the power of researching online and purchasing offline as a business, but in my current role in previous roles as well, physical stores is the first contact there. What do you want them to do when they're there? Do we want to sign them up for further communication and really map out what that looks like? Because that's how you then develop these different touch points in communication, along the journey from engagement through to consideration to purchase what that engagement might look like for a product or service, you might have highly researched product, you know, that they want to look at more information followed by reviews, followed by more infirm mation of content, visual content. So financial products, for example, might require a lot of different information to find the right product fit for them. So we spent actually a lot of time for us that Lauder to do things like product finder, as well as get the right formulation for the product, but also the shade as well. But there's also some very low barrier products to research. So they don't maybe need as much product information as that. So you want to ensure that the different digital touch points are delivering a clear value to the consumer across that awareness consideration conversion stages, probably areas to look out for is brand consistency is extremely important when consumers are maybe going to a brand website or a retail website or in store experience, you want to ensure the brand pillars and purpose are being reinforced. We know or did do a lot of insights. When I was in Asia for Clinique, the amount of digital touchpoints , some markets we're going through to make a purchase decision. And it was up with 11 and 12 on some occasions. So they'd go to different sites to get different views of the particular brand, asking what people are saying on a blog or a forum, looking at what an influence might be signed about the product and doing a lot of research, particularly in skincare and these types of products where people might not be able to touch and feel this product or not going yet into it. And they want to see what's the right brand for them or right. Interesting one for them to go and try. So that's really important that you ensure that you're not just thinking of one or two sites because consumers could be going to a number of sites and , and how your brand is featured or talked about on those sites are going to impact the purchase decision. So that's probably a key area of ensuring you have brand consistency across. And I think that's a really on the thought through ID . Sometimes it's really just the two or three main channels that we play on that you don't know where people might go to find out about the products, curiosity, right. Christopher , what is the most common question you get asked about eCommerce strategy? Usually the most common question I get is what is the horizon that you'd look at when e-commerce and CNA commerce strategy and the roadmap? I think eCommerce and digital changes so much. I really find it not feasible sort of . Well , we usually say they've been three year financial targets. We over achieved them within a year and a half to two years. So I look at it in three ways, the short, medium and long term. So short term window is certainly six months. That's really the current roadmap , the execution within the channel, the customer, and what resources were put into that with reviews around, around that quite frequently of going, is this the right strategy for them looking at size the second half of the year? So usually a yearly strategy with two major half customer plans lens. The medium lens is certainly within 12 months. So once you have the yearly strategy, what is the technology plan, right, Matt , that goes with that. What does the organizational structure look like? We're constantly looking at roles and responsibilities within the team and making sure that they are adding all the business value to business units or customers. If they're in a corporate capacity or really focused on the, on the right priorities of what's needed within that 12 month window, then we're looking at more of the longer term. So the two to three we know of what is the innovation pipeline look like? They're usually innovation pipeline of product. We also want to ensure there's a pipeline of innovation of technology. We want to be prototyping two to three new initiatives, whether that new data see models, use of blockchain or connect the dog bowls and things like that, that we're talking. Now, we want to have a ensure that we are developing those new models to the future, that we engage consumers and keep up to date of what the changes are in technology as well. So that's probably more of a , a longer term window, but certainly from a business or commercial aspect, it's within the 12 to 18 month window. Also probably keeping in mind that we also want to keep looking at the future. What is the changes to these customers that we've all the channels that we have? Where are they moving to? And keeping a very, [inaudible] what changes in the landscape are happening because the opportunity might be too late once they reach. And so you want to be looking at what that new emerging customer or one that's suddenly resource stop or has the right strategy that fits within a benefit to your business. Then you want to be having those conversations and saying that now. So we always have got our mind on the existing customers and channels, but also who are the next entrance and who are the next ones with high potential that we can work and partner with.

Speaker 1:

Thanks, Chris , for sharing all this valuable and very practical insights to us. So I wanted to ask you as well, getting to talent related some questions here . So with the current economy downturn, right, what do you think is the most in demand skill sets for eCommerce and technology professionals at this point?

Speaker 2:

Well, it certainly sounds at the moment that if you're in eCommerce , it's a good time. It's very in demand of that talent because of the online penetration scale that that's emerged during covert and leading up to leading up to COVID certainly I'll take tackle the technology professionals first. I think what I look for in the technology professional skillset is those that have combined commercial business understanding with the technology capability, tap someone to being able to translate a complex technical project or solution ensure it's actually delivering business value or consumer benefit is really important technology for the sake of change. If it's not being able to be adapted or adopted by the consumer or at least understood or will leverage bother business, it won't count anyway , and it's just deployment for deployment psych. And so having that understanding to be able to take an idea or technology solution and ensure that he's delivering something and challenge sometimes what it needs to do. So it can be locally developed locally adjusted for the local needs. That's certainly a skill set that is really important from a technology or technical professional point, having a service mindset from that group as well, to be able to collaborate across teams, you collaborate across a number of stakeholders, usually from agencies through to maybe corporate technology functions through to brands as well. That's something of a skill set that's also helps ensure projects move along and having the right people to push through barriers as well. Resilience is a really key area that I look for people that might not get an idea first time. Then you need to show resilience to keep pushing through barriers to dry resolve . You might face resistance in what you're trying to deploy into market as well. New things are always not understood the first time and having people who are resilient to drive through that will get the better result at the end, because they've certainly adjusted to all the barriers or the, the requirements to let any new idea to market from the commerce skillset side, having a good cross section of skills. I think many of the commerce and digital markets can start off very specialized in a particular function or a particular customer channel . They might be a search specialist or an account management role as an agency, or they might work on a particular customer. It's certainly a great place to start the skillset development, but ultimately what we want to do is also bring talent through the organization. So we might start with a very focused area of development, but we ultimately develop business results as well. So we want to scale those types of people into, into roles as well. So I think being open to learning other areas and developing more of a cross section of understanding and skill is certainly what I think is important because you might need someone to manage the entire data C business that would require lead-generation understanding content as well, then the operational side of e-commerce. But if you just specific on search, for example, that would relate to some limitations, all their sort of capability when I'm also looking at haha , it's suddenly entrepreneur and out of the box thinking is important. Many of the core skills of e-commerce can be developed and one , but having talents that God new, innovative thinking, translating that business opportunity is key. I always look for people to God and create the future. Things change. The landscape changes a lot of things that worked well in the past are certainly not going to be what guides success for the future. So having team members that's entrepreneurial in that respect are able to see what space opportunities translate those into business opportunities and then influence across the business and drive into from idea into launches is really, really important. So that's the, probably the areas that I would say of needing of talent when it comes to a homeless skills.

Speaker 1:

Yeah. I agree that eCommerce is so dynamic like every day is , is a different day. Right. And just curious a little bit , like we have heard from many hiring managers that they are not focusing on past working experience when they are hiring for the eCommerce team. Just like what you say like every day is a different day. Right. But yeah, actually focusing a little bit more on the soft skills and attitude of the person. So do you feel the same way when you hire as well?

Speaker 2:

I would not doubt a war on talent. This might be the result. We might not have the right talent internally. We'll be able to get the right level of experience that we need externally. So we decide that's probably a good person. Let's get that in. I certainly have taken that approach to previously to more junior highs to ensure the right mindset, willingness to learn openness or passion for the channel. That's a really great place to start if they're really know challenges or maybe the right experience level, having some commercial marketing experience and demonstration of these ideas and is important. So I think if you can get someone that's got a little bit of brand or, or commercial experience and train them up, that's certainly a good approach to take as many skills I think can be trained in some of the best experiences on the job. There'll be failures, but that's okay. That's certainly a great way to do it. I'd caution that approach more senior level because as you need the soft skills and attitudes, certainly, but combined , you've got to combine that with the digital knowledge. You need to understand some of the financials of the channels and you're dealing with complexity. And so getting someone just with a great attitude without the understanding of the complexity across the channels and the different pillars, when it comes to say business or eCommerce, that certainly would probably lead you to a bit of a business disadvantage versus other companies that did have that resource. So it's just trying to find the right balance and suddenly not shying away from a commerce talent, but yeah, you're right. They need to also demonstrate those skill sets and not just have the technical capabilities because without that mindset ideas don't get done and it doesn't translate well from an idea to the business as well.

Speaker 1:

Makes sense. And I agree with that. So actually for the next question, right. I get asked this a lot as well. So like we throw the question to you for individuals who like to do a career change and move into the eCommerce space, right? What do you think is the first thing for them to do and what is the best way to

Speaker 2:

Oh great. It's never too late to start any . So I really feel just warming up in the region and it's the future. So I would say, firstly, demonstrate your passion for the channel. Best learning you can do is been hired, is to set up a business or help someone. Who's got an online business just to build that experience. Everyone knows someone with a side project they're selling shoes out of their garage or stuff like that. So even helping them like content on the social or helping them develop content or running an ad words, campaign for them on a truck, I thought it's great money and experience. We have a small project set up in the team at the moment called chain of origin. And my, one of my, the business executives is helping develop all the content running the ads. The experience game with that is going to be far better than any train that we can do alone. What quickly, what works, what content resonates, what formats working and what doesn't, and you get a quickly an idea of , of the budget required and the targeting that you do. So I would encourage that firstly, and then if you don't have any formal learning around e-commerce or digital, plenty of online courses, depending on your market, some free. So certainly start with that fundamentals of digital marketing on Google, get AdWords certified. I think if you, the more you can build a little bit of technical knowledge around the landscape around the drivers, around eCommerce and digital, that's certainly going to the previous question, demonstrate your keenness for this area, your openness to learn. And then suddenly you can start with applying that learning into a , into a , into a role that might be established peer in a current role in a company with an eCommerce team. So do reach out to your leads. We don't always know who's interested. I certainly it's a hard sell in previous times to get people to join the eCommerce team from maybe a traditional marketing career that you were progressing on from us . Some brand manager, the brand manager that marketing manager , or you're in a sales role that is more traditional, but their reach out , if you interested, this could be a really way to fast track your career in a channel that's going to only increase and become a larger part of the business. So these skillsets are going to be more and more in demand. So I would suggest reach out to those e-commerce team in HR, introduce yourself, ask to be involved in any side projects, let your ambitions be known because suddenly that's what we as online leaders are looking for. They're looking for people to put their hand up to be the next one into the team and show that enthusiasm for the space so that we don't always know who's who's keen or not. So I would suggest reach out and let it be known that you're interested. You can connect any places where you can find more recordings of yourself . Certainly. So I'm present on LinkedIn. So please connect with me on LinkedIn. Send me requests, ask a question. Totally fine. I think it's a great forum to connect with like minded people within industry to learn off each other. So certainly that's a great start. I appear or participated in a number of webinars. Always promote those or list those on promote, but I certainly list them on, on my LinkedIn profile when I am doing them. If there is a subject that is more top of mind, certainly at the moment COVID related, webinars are top of mind of what to do in a crisis. Somebody that's been more discussion recently, but certainly always looking to do more where I can share my experiences as well and help develop the next leaders in eCommerce and digital like for us, are we connected on LinkedIn? So anyway, thank you for the past one hour in terms of sharing all these useful and very practical insights with us and our audience, just to get to know you too . Thanks so much. Thank you for having me follow this . Interesting.

Speaker 3:

Lisa obstructed a podcast on iTunes, Spotify on Stitcher or one of the podcasts that we are looking for it for your feedback.