Leda Writes for Fintech Futures: Getting your executives on the journey

Dr Leda Glyptis 11:FS Foundry CEO
5min read

Every Thursday, Leda Glyptis, 11:FS Chief of Staff creates #LedaWrites. This week she turns her attention to making disruption a part of a bank’s identity rather than a layer that sits uncomfortably on top of traditional activity.

The mindset of an old-school banker is focused on the stuff that makes money that he knows well. That’s why disruption and digital activity sits on this layer, it’s not that the old-school banker doesn’t care about it, it’s that he doesn’t care as much.

Not having a digital vision doesn’t make a bank CEO stupid, that surface level of excitement you see in meetings is genuine. They fully understand how important it is to find new ways to serve their business.

But there are knowledge gaps that go beyond understanding the landscape. There are people born knowing digital flocking into the workforce right now. The market changes at such a fast pace that knowing what it takes to make things work keeps changing.

It’s not a secret. Your CEO is spending money now to prepare the organisation for a future they know they don’t get, a future they won’t run and they’re okay with that. They just want to leave a legacy that can be worked by the next generation.

Ultimately, sitting executives are suffering from missing the pathways to get the talent and knowledge they need. Possibly because they’re set in the ways that got them the corner office.

Until digital is everyone’s job it won’t get done well enough, fast enough or comprehensively enough. So what can you do?

There’s only one way to address it:

Seniors don’t like being told their baby is ugly, pointing out the stuff they don’t know doesn’t help. Plug the gaps for them, find their learning style and help them learn. Help them without ever pointing out how much they don’t know.

At the same time don’t patronise them. You are not a replacement for the organisation’s lack of strategic vision.

Find out what they care about on any level, it doesn’t matter what it is, but find it and use it as the starting point for their journey. Your executives are humans and you were brought on to deliver human-centred design. So design the journey for them, fuelled by their own fire.

Read the full story on Fintech Futures.