Natwar is the business head of Cuddle.ai – an AI-powered platform for Business Analysis incubated within Fractal Analytics. A part of the leadership team of Fractal for more than a decade now, he has been instrumental in building Fractal’s CPG practice & consulting with several Fortune 100 companies across the industries. He was also instrumental in building Fractal Sciences, the data science & technology lab of Fractal that led to various products like Concordia, Trial Run, Customer Genomics.
Natwar changes the way we view the big picture - how advances in artificial intelligence and other technologies will reshape the human world, and how present actions affect the future. He comes with a deep interest in shaping the future of work through data.
Johan Aurik served as Kearney’s Global Managing Partner and Chairman of the Board from 2012 to 2018. During term in leadership, the firm significantly grew its revenues and impact with clients globally, and expanded its presence to over 60 offices in 40 countries. Under Johan’s direction, the firm bolstered its digital and transformation capabilities, launched an industry-leading NEXT digital solution platform, expanded senior hiring, strengthened brand equity and external partnerships, and launched an award-winning talent development program.
Prior to his election to Global Managing Partner, Johan led the firm’s operations in the Europe, Middle East, and Africa regions from 2009 to 2012. In addition, Johan served as a member of the firm’s Board of Directors and its Global Operating Committee, co-led the firm’s consumer industries and retail practice, and led Kearney’s operations in the Benelux countries.
Johan is a frequent and passionate speaker and author on the impact of digital change on business and society. He is co-author of two books -- The Future of Strategy (McGraw-Hill, 2015) and Rebuilding the Corporate Genome (Wiley, 2002) -- and is currently working on a third.
Presently, Johan supports the firm’s senior global clients in their most important strategy and transformation questions. In addition, he serves as Board member for several technology business start-ups.
A native of the Netherlands, Johan has lived and worked across the world for most of his life. He is based in London.
On-demand webinar - Analytics for the Executive Home Office
Marissa Mayer, when she joined Yahoo! in 2013, said it is no longer cool to work from home. A survey done in 2018 states that only 3% of Americans work from home for 50% of their time. Globally this number would be further less. Roll into 2020, and everything has changed now.
The pandemic has pushed many businesses to adapt to a complete remote workforce suddenly. For an organization to function remotely, geographically dispersed teams require the ability to communicate effectively. The other aspect of a successful executive home office organization is decision-making, and that also requires decentralization. What it means is using data to relook at the way your business is working.
Remote working: Challenge or opportunity?
Physical office space has one big advantage. You can get the team in a room until the problem is solved. But in a home office, a lot more planning is required. Small things that were taken for granted, such as body language, interpersonal connections, non-verbal agreements, suddenly change. However, there is a big plus. The discipline that comes with distributed decision-making brings the best out in people. Breaking down synchronous nature of decision making that is a business meeting into an asynchronous mode, where people understand points at their own time, after getting the right data. Finally, decisions are made, thereby improving the overall productivity of the organizations.
Executives are adapting to this change; differently
There are three traditional ways in which we can look at our executives. They are agnostic, self server, and the traditionalist. These three very same executives are now operating differently in the remote set up. To make them successful, we need analytics that can craft solutions for them.
Digital transformation is happening in every industry. Executives are either overwhelmed by the changes, and are in a survival mode or they’re overwhelmed about what needs to change. Decision making can no longer focus on simple budget planning for the next year. It needs to focus on more important problems, like problems of the future, the problems for survival, the problems where the strategy for tomorrow needs to be. So, decision making must be bolder and deeper. This is where analytics and data play an important role than before.
Every executive of every company now needs to take a fresh look at how they make decisions. Is it fast enough? Is it bold enough? Are we focusing on the right things? Research states that 50% of the executive time is spent on administrative work, something that should be automated. The time spent on strategic decision making is just 20% or less. It has today become critical to automate what can be automated and focus the time of the executive on decision making.
So far, automation has happened for efficiency reasons. In the years ahead, data analytics will require a lot more granularity across the value chain, with customers getting increasingly fragmented. The same applies to the supply chain as well. Another area where it will be critical is, decision making. Where to go forward to? What should businesses strategize about, and how should we go about it? Data and analytics will be used for creative and strategic decision making, and the journey has already begun.
Five stages of analytics readiness for remote working
There are five stages for analytics readiness, and we see organizations operating through one of these five stages.
Stage One: It works
This is the classic stage, where everything just moved remote. Report management is working smoothly, all dashboards available remotely, and the executive can work interactively with the data. However, what it doesn’t take into account is the changed context. This is what we can call as the base level from the analytics readiness perspective.
Stage 2: It is fast
This is the stage where we respond to the new scenario in front of us. With the increased level of uncertainty, data is required on a more granular level. What was monthly and quarterly, is now daily. The models are getting updated more frequently, and it is no longer about long-range forecasting but short-range work. This is the fast model, but we are still trying to replicate things that were there earlier. It is still trying to replicate physical offices to virtual offices, except they are trying to make it fast in many ways.
The first two stages are hence called challenge stages with organizations considering remote working as a challenge.
Stage 3: Collaborative
This is where everybody’s data is truly democratized. Everybody has their dashboards, and boardrooms have taken shape into a new form so that people can start working with each other. There is also a tremendous push on data literacy. Most executives are traditionalists, and they now need to upgrade their analytics skills. So, this is the new beginning where people and organizations are looking to use their power of remote working well.
Stage 4: Personal analyst
This is the stage where most organizations want to be at. It’s where organizations are virtually translating and giving every business user their personal line. A stage where things start getting proactive. It’s what you expect from a smart analyst. There are intelligent alerting systems, so even if the executive is not clued in, he gets notifications on the smartphone, proactively telling what he needs to know. He’s not restricted by the problem or the system. He can ask any questions about the data and get an answer. This is where many companies are trying to reach.
Stage 5: Co-pilot
A stage where the executive can let the analytic system know that these are the goals and what he wants to accomplish at the end. Each executive can have his co-pilot and analytic system. Just like we search a destination in Google maps, and it suggests the fastest route, here it navigates the data and makes sure we get there in the fastest possible way.
At the point when we are working remotely, this is a proactive way to tell us what we need to do and constantly guide and helps us in meeting those goals.
Organizations are going through one of these five stages. The biggest jump seen is between stages two and three. As organizations and executives set up and continue to function from the home office, it will become imperative for them to set up the right data and analytics infrastructure to benefit from this transformation that the pandemic has brought in front of us.