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People Changing Enterprises

Welcome to People Changing Enterprises, the show for status quo-busters who are ready to make change happen.

Our guests have transformed big businesses from the inside, helping their enterprises embrace the composable future and become industry leaders. They share their secrets to success through the lenses of technology, mindset and business strategy — so you can do the same.

This is People Changing Enterprises.
Are you ready to make your mark?

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All episodes

September 24, 2023/21:06/E41

A year of composable transformation: Lessons from Levi’s, ASICS, REI and more

Join us in celebrating a remarkable milestone - People Changing Enterprises is turning one! In this special anniversary episode, we're taking a journey back to where it all began, exploring our most captivating insights from the past year. And what better way to kick off this anniversary special than revisiting one of our most talked-about subjects: Composable Digital Experiences, featuring our stellar lineup of guests who've generously shared their expertise with us.Timestamps:01:02 Jurre van Ruth - Strategic Program Manager, Composable DXP at the Dutch postal service, PostNL. He'll provide insights into what a composable DXP truly means.03:48 Andreas Westendörpf - CTO of Emma Sleep explains why going composable might just be the last re-platform you'll ever need.05:28 Kat Valdre and Jason Greely - Members of the REI Platform Engineering team explore the exciting possibilities that composable strategies unlock for businesses.09:12 Mindy Montgomery - Senior Technical Product Manager at ASICS takes us through ASICS' journey from monolithic technology to a composable customer experience ecosystem.12:51 Zach Crittendon - Software Architect at Levi's shares firsthand experiences of "going composable" and how this transformative journey can benefit your business.15:51 Watchouts from our guests: What they wish they'd known before going composable.18:18 Juliette Olah - Senior Manager of Editorial at Booking.com emphasizes the importance of launching projects in a tiered approach for maximum impact.

August 20, 2023/13:36/E38

How to raise digital literacy inside your organization, with Informa’s Narisa Wild

Narisa Wild (Informa) shares how the company introduced an innovative "digital skills index" to raise digital literacy across the organization. She also shares the keys to effective digital transformation that are crucial for any digital leader embarking on any change initiative. Tune in to gain practical strategies and a fresh perspective on how to empower people at all levels of the business to create a stronger digital foundation for a future-ready enterprise. Timestamps:01:28 What were Narisa's biggest challenges when starting to digitally transform the giant organization Informa?04:12 The "digital skills index": what is it and why was it important?06:50 How digital literacy factors into organization-wide goal setting07:58 Advice for digital leaders looking to raise digital literacy inside their organization11:08 Narisa's key mindset for becoming a better digital leader overall

August 13, 2023/21:09/E37

Content migration and future of content with Informa’s Narisa Wild

This week we dive into the complex topic of content migration with Narisa Wild, who has spearheaded the digital transformation at Informa, a global B2B events and information services company. We cover the drivers behind content migration, and how to make data-driven decisions about migration and transformation processes -- and how AI is going to offer new opportunities, not just for migration, but for taxonomy, content, and the events space overall.Timestamps: 1:06 What does Informa do?1:43 Narisa's role in digital transformation 2:23 3 drivers for content migration4:08 The #1 content migration question5:04 Where content creation fits in7:22 Why a composable stack makes migration decisions easier10:21 How dashboards help11:43 The future of content at Informa13:53 How AI can aid content migration16:57 How AI can impact event CX strategy 18:27 Looking deeper at the future of enterprise content

July 16, 2023/13:27/E36

Developer Experience: REI’s definition and how they make it great

This week we explore the topic of developer experience with REI's Kat Valdre and Jason Greeley. They take us behind the scenes of platform engineering at REI and how the two of them think about creating the best possible experience for developers working on these platforms. Kat Valdre is the Engineering Manager of the REI Platform Organization, and Jason Greeley, Solutions Architect, manages content and experience at REI. Collectively, Kat and Jason bring a wealth of knowledge in creating user-friendly infrastructure for developers, supporting their productivity, and fostering innovation in their work. Learn:- How REI's platform engineering teams provide tools and services to enhance developer experience and ultimately benefit the end customer- How making a developer's workday easier and reducing repetitive tasks can lead to better productivity and satisfaction- The importance of providing established solutions with robust SDKs and APIs, and offering reliable support for technical questions- Encouraging exploration and flexibility within the development team and the benefits of involving developers in decision-making processesTimestamps:01:20 The role of platform engineering teams at REI03:05 What is developer experience?04:42 The role of creativity05:54 How to support several developer teams and help them be successful08:11 What Jason and Kat look for in technology to support a good developer experience10:37 Advice for developers seeking a better experience

July 9, 2023/24:27/E35

REI's composable transformation advice

Kat Valdre and Jason Greely from the REI Platform engineering team share their composable transformation story. They discuss the challenges they faced while decomposing their monolithic architecture and their approach to building trust across the organization as they embark on a years-long transformation. Their transparent and refreshing perspective on tech transformation will resonate with anyone who feels their progress is slower than they (or their organization) would like to move. Kat and Jason provide valuable insights and advice for any business making a major technological shift. Timestamps:1:41 What were things like at REI before they decided to go composable04:06 What pushed REI to start their composable transformation?06:25 The importance of introducing changes in manageable parts07:54 What composable will enable for the business11:17 Advice for companies embarking on composable transformation12:55 Dealing with differing opinions and disagreements13:57 The importance of documentation16:41 Hurdles and challenges REI has faced along the way 18:50 Managing expectations and maintaining morale when transformation takes a long time

June 18, 2023/15:45/E34

Transformation through Automation: Keith Mazanec, Brad's Deals

Keith Mazanec (Director Software Engineering, Brad's Deals) returns to share the company's in-depth transformation story, highlighting the content lifecycle automations that made the biggest different for content teams as the company moved from legacy to composable. This session was recorded live at ContentCon 2023. 

June 11, 2023/10:58/E33

Make it a FEAST: How to get people excited about change, with PostNL's Jurre van Ruth

We hear time and time again that digital transformation has less to do with technology and more about helping people to change the way they think. But how do you actually do that? Our guest today has a proven formula. Jurre van Ruth is leading a major digital transformation for the Dutch postal service. Today, he shares the secrets to his success - and the acronym is "FEAST".00:57 FEAST: How to make sure everyone is excited about change from beginning to end01:35 Fun - creating engaging and enjoyable meetings02:18 Empathy - what if the other is right?3:48 Aligned - how to ensure everyone is on the same page5:28 Storytelling - the best thing you can hear in a meeting is something that's on the next slide6:02 Team - bringing others along on the journey to increase your chances of success7:31 How to address resistance to change9:02 #1 piece of advice for anyone looking to make a big change

June 4, 2023/16:11/E32

What is a Composable Digital Experience Platform? With PostNL's Jurre van Ruth

What is a composable digital experience platform? What are the key capabilities that it must represent? Where do you start in building one? How do you know if you are successful - what metrics should you look at when, and how do you communiate to business and IT stakeholders along the way? Dutch postal service PostNL's Jurre van Ruth (Strategic Program Manager, Composable DXP) has the answers. In this episode, he tells the story of the company's digital transformation from monolithic technology to a Composable DXP and how that has made PostNL one of the country's most innovative digital businesses. Timestamps:0:54 What is PostNL?1:38 Jurre's role and responsibility2:20 Defining a Composable DXP4:12 What was the digital capabilty landscape like inside PostNL before going composable?6:03 Where to start? How the company decided where to begin the transformation.7:22 What they did instead of a roadshow to get buy-in for the Composable DXP concept8:38 "Zooming out" strategy to prepare a business for a big change10:49 Metrics Jurre's team uses to measure success of the Composable DXP13:41 How the team uses these metrics to create momentum14:19 A simple but huge benefit of Composable DXP: creating a common language

May 21, 2023/12:59/E31

Building the business case for headless technology, with Booking.com’s Juliette Olah

When Juliette Olah joined Booking.com, she created a comprehensive editorial strategy - but that strategy needed a more robust content management technology behind it. In this episode, she takes us through how she built a business case for headless CMS, how she got the green light for it, and what the new technology will enable for the brand in the years to come.Timestamps:01:15 The state of content tech at Booking.com when Juliette started at the company01:33 Juliette's vision for content technology at Booking.com03:55 Why choose headless?05:17 Building the business case for headless techology07:00 Getting the green light 09:35 The importance of advocacy 10:42 What Juliette is most looking forward to becoming possible with the new headless CMS at Booking.com

May 7, 2023/14:05/E30

Editorial strategy deep dive, with Booking.com’s Juliette Olah

Juliette Olah joined Booking.com in March 2020 - a scary time for the travel industry, but a fantastic opportunity to elevate editorial long-form content. In this episode, she takes us through building a net-new editorial strategy for the global travel brand - and how she sold it in to stakeholders throughout the company. This is an editorial strategy masterclass!Timestamps:1:01 Juilette's role1:20 The state of editorial at Booking.com when Juliette joined2:22 The key elements of an editorial strategy4:19 Measurement and KPIs for editorial5:22 What's a content pillar?6:33 Where translation and localization fit in9:42 How Juliette got stakeholder buy-in for her new editorial strategy12:25 Remember, your content is competing with all other content

April 26, 2023/13:53/E29

Tips from the C-Suite: How marketing and sales can get along

Whether you're new to the C-Suite or looking to get there soon, there will inevitably be communication challenges along the way - and possibly none as thorny as "sales vs marketing". Contentstack CMO Susan Beermann and Chief Revenue Officer Todd Rathje offer their perspective on how marketing and sales can play as one team, plus some all-around communication tips and tricks you need to know as a C-level executive.Timestamps:01:18 How Susan got from a career in sales to being CMO02:03 Todd's entrepreneurial journey to Chief Revenue Officer03:17 How to speak the language of the C-Suite5:55 What leaders can do if marketing and sales are "warring factions" inside your business07:48 C-level 'communications hack': Forging close connections at lightning speed09:30 Advice for addressing conflict12:26 Mindset tip: The importance of "being a goldfish" 

April 16, 2023/12:52/E28

Taking career leaps of faith, with Brad’s Deals Director of Engineering

Today we talk to a Director of Engineering who went from IT to retail sales and back about what he's learned. From taking a career leap of faith, to CX lessons learned on the retail floor, this episode is a must-listen for anyone in a customer experience oriented industry... or anyone looking to make a career change.Timestamps:1:11 Keith's backstory - how he got from computer programming to retail and back again2:52 The "aha" moment that sparked Keith's journey back to technology4:51 What was it like taking a leap of faith, leaving a solid career for an unknown developer bootcamp?6:44 What Keith learned about business working in retail9:39 Customer experience lessons from the retail floor

April 9, 2023/13:40/E27

Bridging monolith and composable with automation, with Director of Engineering Keith Mazanec

Moving to composable technology almost never happens all at once. There is a transition period. How do you help teams make the most of the composable technology, while easing the transition between old and new? Keith Mazanec, Director of Software Engineering at Brad’s Deals shares how they used a composable content technology with automation capabilities (Contentstack) to create an easy transition that improved the lives of content editors straightaway - and created a better experience for everyone, customers included. Plus, hear about their favorite uses of Automation Hub to automate across the content lifecycle.Timestamps:1:05 The volume of content at Brad's Deals, and what that means for content editors1:56 Why Brad's Deals looked for a new content management technology2:27 An example of how automations helped reduce manual data entry for content editors3:57 The custom dashboard Brad's Deals built for their editors5:06 Example of automating a categorizing function to speed up content publishing process6:03 Versioning and automating making changes to the content model8:16 How Brad's Deals created continuity between their legacy technology and the new headless CMS9:57 Automating throughout the content lifecycle across different content & marketing applications

April 2, 2023/10:38/E26

(Re)building trust through tech and business change, with Brad’s Deals’ Keith Mazanec

How do you create a successful transformation when markets are unstable and business changes are inevitable? Brad's Deals re-imagined their content technology and created a new world that the content teams had to adapt to... And then the market conditions turned and the whole company had to adapt again. In this episode, hear from Director of Software Engineering Keith Mazanec about the lessons he's learned for creating change while building trust through turbulence.Timestamps:1:00 Why content is the lifeblood of Brad's Deals1:28 The challenge that led the company to re-imagine their content technology4:25 Why initially there was fear amongst the content team5:08 How Keith helped to change the mindset inside the organization and build confidence6:39 A challenging year 07:04 Rebuilding trust after layoffs07:53 The importance of writing everything down8:23 Planning for business continuity

March 19, 2023/13:40/E25

Make your company a great place to work, with Emma Sleep’s Andreas Westendörpf

Every company pays lip service to building a great culture where people trust each other, feel free to challenge each other, and openness and transparency are the name of the game. But building that kind of culture doesn't happen without work - and more importantly, a set of principles against which to work. Andreas Westendörpf (CTO, Emma Sleep) has transformed several organizations from slow and complex to agile and innovative - and he says the company culture must transform along with the technology, if you want to be in the 21st century as a business. In this episode, Andreas lays out the principles that Emma Sleep has used to build a culture of openness, trust, and transparency - and how Andreas thinks about management, leadership, and the principles of human motivation to underpin his team's participation in this culture and the company's success.Timestamps:0:58 What it means to "share early, broadly, and openly" inside a company2:37 Why a bit of "chaotic noise" is okay, and actually needed, for a healthy culture3:58 What metaphor Emma sleep uses for their team instead of "family"5:32 Dan Pink's methodology for motivation, applied to the workplace9:26 Build a team you want to work in11:06 Don't become a manager

March 12, 2023/19:32/E24

The last replatform you’ll ever do, with Emma Sleep’s Andreas Westendörpf

Andreas Westendörpf (CTO) brought the concept of composable commerce to Emma Sleep. But that wasn't his agenda from the outset. In this episode, he shares how to know if your organization is ready for composable; why e-Commerce organizations can be surprisingly outdated in their technology; how to challenge vendors and commercial models in parts of the enterprise technology landscape that have not yet embraced composable principles; why Emma Sleep made the jump -- and what you should be prepared for if you do the same. Timestamps:1:00 Why Andreas brought the concept of composable to Emma Sleep4:49 Why e-Commerce technology is often surprisingly outdated5:34 How (monolithic) vendor commercial models make composable difficult8:14 How Andreas challenged Microsoft on composable models - and won11:24 What businesses need to know about the potential of composable technology13:45 The last replatform you'll ever do?15:35 Andreas's advice for businesses starting their composable journey

March 5, 2023/11:33/E23

Your misconceptions about the IT department, with Emma Sleep’s Andreas Westendörpf

If you're on the "business" side of your company and don't think too much about the workings of the IT department, Emma Sleep CTO Andreas Westendörpf has some news for you: it's time to start paying attention. In this episode, Andreas uncovers common misconceptions about the IT department and shares why it's essential to close the gaps between IT, marketing, and everything in between. Timestamps:2:00 How a CTO can bring an enterprise into the 21st century2:25 Common misconceptions in the business world about software 3:49 Just because you can, doesn't mean you should4:41 The attitude towards the IT department that kills innovation7:30 How technology creates value inside an organization9:52 The trend Andreas has noticed in the past few years that means you have to start thinking about your techhnology

February 19, 2023/10:31/E22

Disrupting industries and building an "experience library" with ASICS' Mindy Montgomery

Mindy Montgomery (Sr. Technical Product Manager at ASICS) is a true disruptor. As a serial product manager and consultant, she has instigated change in a variety of industries - like democratizing patient data in healthcare. In this episode, Mindy shares her perspective on creating change, what it takes to make changes you put in motion stick -- plus, hear her surprising advice for what to look for in your next job.Timestamps:0:53 Democratizing patient data in healthcare4:52 Don't work with people you know6:56 Lessons from transforming 150-year-old brands8:20 Switching to a new technology won't bring about change9:08 End user experience is critical for product, process, and brand adoption

February 12, 2023/14:37/E21

Moving from monolith to composable with ASICS' Mindy Montgomery

Mindy Montgomery, Sr. Technical Product Manager at ASICS, describes the brand's journey from monolithic technology to a composable customer experience ecosystem. She describes how their eCommerce, omnichannel, and partnerships brand experiences are underpinned by composable technology, and how all of that stems from their brand mission - "A sound mind in a sound body".Learn about:- The ASICS vision for the truly omnichannel customer experience - How the company moved from a Salesforce monolithic platform to a composable stack- What Mindy has learned about how to run RFPs quickly, efficiently, and effectivelyTimestamps: 1:01 The ASICS omnichannel vision2:30 The company's journey to eCommerce and composable technology3:57 The brand promise that is driving technological strategy at ASICS4:39 The composable model supporting future brand extensions inside the ecosystem platform6:33 Moving off the monolith 8:11 What's next in eCommerce for the brand10:09 Tips for surviving the RFP process13:06 Trust your internal knowledge - and instincts when it comes to vendor conversations

February 5, 2023/16:54/E20

Battling resistance to change, with ASICS' Mindy Montgomery

Mindy Montgomery, Senior Technical Product Manager at Asics, shares the many ways she's navigated around organizational resistance to change.

February 1, 2023/16:16/E19

Stakeholder management: Getting what you want at work, with Jasmin Guthmann

In this bonus episode, host Jasmin Guthmann shares advice for navigating stakeholder management, managing workplace politics, and overcoming fear of uncertainty and rejection - for going after what you want at work with confidence.

January 22, 2023/15:49/E18

Carrots, not sticks: building tech for autonomous teams, with Levi’s Zach Crittendon

Zach Crittendon (Levi's) shares the psychology behind tech strategies that make marketing teams more autonomous.

January 15, 2023/20:35/E17

Moving to a composable architecture, with Levi's Zach Crittendon

Zach Crittendon implemented Levi Strauss & Co.'s first composable technology, and has long been an advocate for composable and advisor to retail brands, answering their questions about how to do it well, what to do first, and what to look forward to after the transition. Today, hear from Zach first-hand about what "going composable" has enabled for Levi's and how you can do the same.

January 4, 2023/29:24/E16

An interview with Jasmin Guthmann, by Contentstack CEO Neha Sampat

This interview was recorded for the last episode of Neha Sampat's Dreammakers, a show about trailblazing women changing the way you see success, purpose, and what it takes to bridge the two. In this interview, hear about Jasmin's iron-man career, how she develops discipline and builds value-oriented, high-performing teams, and how she has been fighting for gender diversity in the tech industry, both strategically and tactically.

December 28, 2022/22:51/E15

Bob Howland: What I learned leading Dawn Foods through massive transformation

This is a bonus episode of People Changing Enterprises. Hear from Chief Digital Officer Bob Howland tell the story of how he transformed the B2B manufacturing company Dawn Foods from zero eCommerce capabilities, to having a super-modern self-service eCommerce site a year later.

December 18, 2022/09:36/E14

How to be scared and challenge anyway

Jon Richards was not always a "challenger" type. But when he saw a very broken process inside his business, he knew he had to take action. So he put together a proposal to fundamentally change a portion of the digital enterprise - and put it to a tough crowd.

December 11, 2022/18:07/E13

How to digitize in an old-school industry

Scaling a digital business is a given necessity, but when you're in an old-school industry - like golf - it can get pretty tricky to get to the level of digital agility you need, let alone create cutting-edge innovation. But Jon Richards, Head of Digital at Golfbreaks, did it - implementing an agile composable stack across the business. What's more, he created something called a "Digital Center of Excellence" that supports continued innovation for the company.

December 4, 2022/10:42/E12

How to go from good enough to excellent

Learn how to go from good to great from a company that needs to be great to survive. Golfbreaks is at the forefront of a highly competitive industry and they have no choice but to be the best, especially in customer service.

November 30, 2022/16:12/E11

Bonus: How to give designers negative feedback

On this special bonus episode of People Changing Enterprises, we answer just one question: how to give designers negative feedback. Hear firsthand from three designers on how to get better at giving "negative" (or constructive) feedback when you're looking at work that doesn't feel right.

November 21, 2022/11:04/E10

How Icelandair's change-makers keep work drama-free

Icelandair's content team has restructured the airline's content process, and has done so in a completely drama-free way. Edvardas, Hallur, and Oskar share their approach to changing an enterprise, when you're NOT in the C-suite.

November 13, 2022/17:24/E9

Break content speed limits: How Icelandair uses tech to compete with giants

How headless tehcnology helped Icelandair navigate a pandemic, how it allows them to compete with industry giants, and how the content team works side-by-side with developers to build content, translation, and development velocity that helps them keep that competitive edge.

November 6, 2022/15:34/E8

Earning authority: How a team of copywriters changed an airline

Hallur, Óskar and Edvardas took a messy process inside Icelandair and turned it into the company's competitive advantage. In this episode, they share how they did it, and how you can create your own "center of excellence" inside your organization - no matter your "rank".

October 23, 2022/13:48/E7

Toolkit for becoming a change-maker, with CEO, CTO, investor Danielle Diliberti

Danielle Diliberti accelerated from accountant to tech investor, CEO & CTO in just a few short years. Yes, she's got talent in spades. But also, she has a set of operating principles for how to create organizational impact - that you can steal.

October 16, 2022/17:10/E6

When best-in-class isn't good enough: Tech strategy for category leadership

CTO Danielle Diliberti overhauled the tech stack of a just-4-year-old business - by using her tech investor knowledge to find and leverage tech that hasn't been used in the health and wellness context before at scale.

October 9, 2022/14:23/E5

Leading at high speed: empowerment vs. efficiency with CEO Danielle Diliberti

A great leader aims for efficiency, without sacrificing culture or their team's professional growth. How? We asked Danielle Diliberti, CEO of fast-growing experiential marketplace Sommsation (plus a CTO of a wellness brand - and a tech investor - in her spare time).

September 11, 2022/15:35/E4

Radical resiliency: Cultivate the mindset for change

Chief Digital Bob Howland has helped 27 enterprises through digital transformation. And he's the first to say that the technology is the easy part. He shares the strategies he uses to get people to embrace change, including "radical resiliency" - the ultimate tool for sustaining the motivation, collaboration, and courage required to create long-lasting transformation.

September 11, 2022/23:37/E3

Long-term tech strategy: Advice from a Chief Digital Officer

A Chief Digital Officer who has transformed 27 enterprises shares the top 5 lessons he's learned for successful transformation, including: How to buy technology, how to allocate your time, #1 thing to do in your first 30 days, objection handling, and keys to long-term success.

September 11, 2022/17:44/E2

How to have hard conversations with your CFO

What do you do when you and your CFO don't see eye to eye? When you need to ask for (more) money? Or when the board "doesn't get it"? Bob Howland faced all 3 situations in the first few weeks on the job when he signed on to transform Dawn Foods into an eCommerce enterprise. In this episode, he shares how to approach difficult conversations with executives; why you should "be the bringer of bad news" - and how to do it; and how he's learned to get board members to back his requests - before he even formally asks.

August 31, 2022/02:46/E1

Introducing People Changing Enterprises

Welcome to People Changing Enterprises. Who are they? They're you. Listen to find out more.