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Digital Strategies for Leaders - online event takeaways

Updated: a day ago


On the 12th of May 2020, Leaders First hosted another intriguing online event Digital Strategy for Leaders. Members and guests joined all together for the webinar with leading experts to discuss the digital transformation and future of the workplace.


The event was opened by Fabrizio Nicolosi, the founder of Leaders First, who highlighted the importance of implement digital strategies for sustainable growth. The following topics were covered during the online event:


  • Digital transformation for business growth

  • The future of the workplace and digital skills

  • New markets opportunities in current times

  • Introduction to innovation management and digital marketing


Such topics were presented and explained by two leading experts Barbara Cominelli, COO at Microsoft Italy, and Massimo De Zordo, Head of Marketing and Innovation for Chelsea Football Club. They both, over 2 hours, analyzed precisely today’s digital transformation, innovation, and marketing. This blog contains only some of the key points from the talks. Members of Leaders First can benefit from the full recorded event located at the online platform in the Academy section.

The first speaker Barbara Cominelli started by outlining the cruciality of digitalization nowadays. She delivered an engaging presentation on Digital Strategies for Leaders.


Change Management


She emphasized that during this Pandemic Crisis it is vital to change the way of working and the type of relationship you have with employees. Making smart working actually work requires: Trust, Empowerment, Planning, Communication & Connection.


Microsoft is trying to implement these changes and to reshape its technological transformation (Digital Transformation + People Transformation = Cultural Transformation)


New Leadership


Barbara then focused on what Leadership should look like now and in the future for Microsoft. Firstly, leaders should act as role models and secondly, behave as a coach, giving empowerment to people so they discover the best solution themself (from Know It All to Learning It All) and finally show empathy to people, making it normal to say they have doubts especially now that we are living in a pandemic crisis.


Digital Restart in Italy


Her last topic was on the digital restart in Italy, which is very important these days, as the country was only ranked 24th for the digital economy in the EU. She precisely mentioned that it is vital to rethink the way we train people during and after the lockdown as a “more digital normal will require new digital skills”. At the end of her presentation, Barbara shared with the audience the Microsoft's investment plan for the Italian re-launch, including Digital skill, Smarworking Alliance, AI HUB, Sustainability Alliance and a plan for SMBs.



The next speaker Massimo De Zordo drew the attention of the audience by stating that digital marketing and eCommerce are transforming at a high speed.


E-commerce during Covid-19 outbreak


Massimo emphasized that at the beginning of the pandemic more and more products were purchased online, following the high level of the panic. “Safe and Survive” products (e.g. disposable gloves and bread machines) were the main factors of such a significant rise in online purchases, and other products not classified as vital (e.g. luggage and cameras) decreased in sales remarkably. He demonstrated the audience that e-commerce was growing rapidly and was taking over retailing. Massimo confirmed that by 2023 e-commerce will reach $6.5T globally (+68% revenue, +146% Orders +35% People, 72% Mobile)


Media Landscape is Changing


He then focused on the importance of having a digital approach nowadays, as in only 5 years

there has been a shift from 60% of Non-Digital Interaction to 75% of Digital Interaction, with Online videos, Video Games, Broadcast TV, Online TV/Streaming, Online Press, Music Streams, and Livestreams being the most increasing types of media.

Massimo stated that it was vital to create exceptional content to reach your target audience as there is so much competition around you (5B videos watched a day on youtube) and think about how to engage with your customers.


How you get in touch with your customers and how to track the success


He lastly explained that people want quick answers and do not want to talk with an operator. Therefore, it's a must to have a well connected digital environment for quick answers (e.g Chatbot warehouse and track what people are asking (about products, payments, orders).


Moreover, Massimo precisely commented that it may be necessary to use different software, all connected together for a successful e-commerce strategy. From business intelligence & analytics to marketing & customer and operations & finance platforms. Without those, it would be impossible to have the right answer to the right people in a particular part of the world.


For those who would like to deepen their knowledge and practice digital transformation ideas within their business, Leaders First invites to an online masterclass, hosted on 3rd June 2020 from 17:00 to 20:00 GMT, where Massimo De Zordo will explain How to create and distribute content to attract your audience and How to sell products & services online. Participants, members of Leaders First will receive a Certificate in E-Commerce and Digital Communication upon completion.




At the end, Fabrizio Nicolosi closed the event by sharing with the audience Leaders First next upcoming events: Women First (Online Event), Digital Communication Masterclass and a German-speaking member-exclusive Roundtable


If you were unable to attend the event and would like to be present at the next online event as a Member, subscribe to our newsletter to stay up to date or apply to become a Member.

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