I’m delighted to be back in the Media & Broadcast team. The year I spent heading up strategy and business development in 2016 is part of what I call a “patchwork quilt” of experience that I hope will help me in this role. I’ve been a journalist and producer, so I’ve come from the media industry. I’ve been a marketeer, so I’ve come from that world of striving to understand how best to talk to customers. And in the last couple of years I’ve focused on strategy and transformation, so I’ve been asking important questions like “why are we doing what we’re doing?”, “how does it fit in with our industry and the direction of travel?” and “what problems are we solving?”.
The great thing about Media & Broadcast is the fact we’re a specialist team within a far larger organisation. That means we’ve got all the benefits of being part of a large telco (with years of experience), but we can provide truly tailored solutions for the media and broadcast industry.
It’s an industry that’s in the midst of a huge shift – but it hasn’t changed a great deal since I was last here. Now, that might sound like a contraction at first, but let me explain.
The industry’s been on the cusp of change for a few years now. The topics of conversation are similar: moving content into the cloud, virtualisation, end-to-end IP and everything that will enable. The conversation points haven’t changed too much. There are some new ones, of course – like 5G and 8K – but those aren’t a surprise because they’re continuations of existing technologies. We’re all moving in the same direction – and it’s the right direction – but these are big changes; they’re not things people “switch on” overnight.
It might sound cheesy, but it’s about helping people along their journey. And making sure that the services and solutions they buy from us are future-proofed. They shouldn’t be considering buying products today that they’ll have to replace tomorrow.
These were the conversations I started to have earlier this month when I popped along to the International Broadcasting Convention in Amsterdam. And I want to continue that conversation; we have to work together, as partners. And that goes for all players across the media value chain. Communication is so important as we navigate these changes.
I’m here to lead a strategic business unit that puts the customer first. It’s such a big time of change in our industry, and there are a lot of problems we can help solve by combining technological innovation with commercial innovation. And I think Media & Broadcast is well-placed to do that.