5 Ways CEO’s Need to Think About Digital Transformation in Order to Lead it for Their Brand

Majority of CEOs and C-Suite Executives will agree digital is no longer a thing, it is a way of being… But what does that mean? The good news is, there’s a number of business leaders who have figured it out, and achieved inspired growth strategies in the process.

On Tuesday, November 14th, Level5, in partnership with Spencer Stuart, hosted the eighth annual Level5 Leaders Forum Power Breakfast: THE BRAND DRIVEN CEO – DIGITAL 2.0

Eighth annual LEVEL5 Leaders Forum Power Breakfast

At Level5, we have built our business and brand around the perspective that your brand is the value of a promise consistently kept™. Today, digital is emerging as a key “way of being” to consistently help shape and deliver that promise and achieve ownable competitive advantage. So how do today’s CEO and C-suite leaders use digital to keep their brand promise consistently?

To move the C-suite digital agenda forward, we brought together an unmatched group of leaders from digitally led organizations, to offer insights and best practices on what can be a confusing environment:

  • Drew GreenCEO, Indochino
  • Steven Goldsmith, President & CEO, Brookstone
  • Andrew Zimakas, AZ Consulting Services
  • Claude Ricks, Managing Partner, Level5 Strategy Group

The panel discussion was moderated by Amanda Langrenowned Canadian business journalist and currently the host of Bloomberg North on Bloomberg TV Canada.

5 Highlights from the panel discussion on how CEO’s need to think about digital transformation in order to lead it:

  1. Real digital transformation needs to start at the top of the organization – with the CEO and C-suite. If there’s a gap in organizations around digital, it is the CEO’s role to provide the vision for where the organization needs to go, and then engage employees to make that vision a reality. The transformation cannot start from the bottom-up – staff need digital vision leadership.
  2. There is a technology component to digital, but CEOs don’t need to be “techie” to lead digital transformation within their organization. If you have a smartphone, shop on Amazon, bank online, or watch Netflix, you can lead your organization’s charge on digital. Technology is merely the means for digital transformation.
  3. Digital transformation is not about finding and implementing new technologies as fast as budgets will allow for. Nor is it simply about adapting to new environments in an effort to maintain ownable competitive advantage vis-à-vis your competitors. Digital is a tool to meet business objectives in new ways and continuously explore “what’s next” when it comes to meeting the needs of your customers.
  4. Digital transformation journeys will be different for each organization. There’s no such thing as a linear “best in class” roadmap to follow. Digital transformation is going to beneeds to be agile and messy. However, many CEOs are reluctant to be perceived as “disorganized” or “not in control”. You have to take chances, fail fast, learn from failures, and keep moving forward with your digital journey.
  5. Digital has enabled customers to take full control of the customer journey, making these journeys more complex, but also more important than ever. Digital enables organizations to engage with customers in new and creative ways; leveraging the valuable data they create to find new ways to address unmet needs.

The event was a huge success and it’s thanks to the support of Spencer Stuart for helping us host, our panelists for sharing their experiences, Amanda Lang for facilitating, and our guests for attending and engaging in meaningful dialogue.

A Level5 white paper discussing key success factors and practical roadmap for implementing digital across your branded business system will be released in January 2018.

Download the whitepaper

Leaders Forum Power Breakfast Panelist

Leaders Forum Power Breakfast Panelist Bios

Drew Green, CEO, Indochino – a seasoned entrepreneur and an expert in managing fast-paced, high-growth companies; since joining INDOCHINO as CEO in 2015, Drew has tripled the size of the company through a commitment to an experience-based omni channel commerce strategy.

Steven Goldsmith, President & CEO, Brookstone –  a retail leader and expert in ecommerce, Steven is leading Brookstone’s expansion into domestic and international retail markets and new product development; previously President of The Shopping Channel, and EVP of Merchandising for Sears Canada and Victoria’s Secret.

Andrew Zimakas, AZ Consulting Services –  25+ years’ cross-industry experience, including Loyalty, Financial Services, Media, and CPG. Andrew led the digital launch of Tangerine and as SVP of Corporate Strategy for LoyaltyOne, he’s helped the organization navigate the increasingly digital nature of the loyalty and analytics space.

Claude Ricks, Managing Partner, Level5 Strategy Group – leads the Digital Strategy and Transformation practice at Level5 leveraging his deep understanding of digital technologies with an agile implementation lens. He has also been COO of gShiftlabs (a leading digital content SEO platform), co-Founder and CEO of SQI Diagnostics (a publicly traded biotechnology firm), and co-founder of the ATKearney change management practice.


By: Sylvia Palka Melo, Manager

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