The COVID-19 pandemic has encouraged many businesses and organizations to absorb modern-day technologies in their strategies to adapt to the times. As a matter of fact, many industries have taken it upon themselves to deliver digital transformation efforts in order to develop a competitive edge in highly competitive global markets. With greater-than-ever access to rapidly converging technologies – machine learning (ML), artificial intelligence (AI), predictive analytics, high-performance and cloud computing, physics-based simulation, and digital twins, among others, companies now have a stellar chance to enhance their business and engineering practices to be designed for the future.
Being aware of today’s trends taking root in various industries, New York-based influencer and global tech leader Karolina Gujska helps the Fortune 500 thrive in the current business landscape and innovate for the future. With 15 years of experience across various industries and incredible know-how on different innovative strategies, this powerhouse woman leader helps her clients succeed every step of the way.
With her expertise and knowledge, Karolina Gujska shares her thoughts about technology and business innovation during the global health crisis in an interview with the US Reporter, first commenting, “With the environment we live in now, businesses need to do what is needed to ensure business continuity and survival… Long term, just responding and then recovering as an organization won’t be enough. We saw this in 2020. Fortune 500 and small businesses need to grow and thrive in a post-COVID world; faster digital enablement transforming into a pandemic-proof organizational model is vital.”
Keep reading below to dive further into Karolina’s knowledge of what she sees with her Fortune 500 clients.
Q: What does a company need to do to survive this day and age, and perhaps, the future?
A: In order to survive today’s landscape, companies need to adapt to the times by bringing technology into their methods. After witnessing how the pandemic has stunted the growth of the global economy, I think it is best to elevate the company strategy by adding innovative tech to one’s business. Another interesting observation from my clients is that industries have now taken a more strategic view of technology, instead of thinking of it as a mere cost driver. Currently, they are looking to technology to strategically differentiate themselves from competitors, which makes my career even more exciting in helping these companies compete.
Q: Having over a decade of experience in the world of technology, one can safely assume that you have seen it all – including the challenges in entering and dominating the Fortune 500 during a pandemic. As you recall your experiences, what have you seen as the true customer need?
A: It’s successfully turning customer data into actionable insights. Actionable insights are the glue to a successful organization. Although the absence of data has been proven fatal to the cause of entrepreneurs and enterprises, actionable insights – insights that impact the ability to decide what path to take next – have been shown to be a propeller of different businesses. Data matters, but actions are vital.
Let me explain it a little further: I work with the very best Fortune 500 brands in the world, and at the core, a brand wants to help people. So how can they create relevant engagement for their customers? They want to be engaging with people and give them the experiences they love. That calls for careful aligning of technology and data with human values and identity. That’s why long-term engagement with customers is difficult to establish, as it requires end-to-end capabilities to translate customer insights into actions that are both relevant and meaningful to the customer. The resulting experience should be human and address human values since everything you do is for a person. With digital becoming an integral part of the new normal, those brands that can elevate the human experience will be able to make a lasting emotional connection with their customers, which then becomes transformational.
Q: The projects you have worked with are quite at scale. Do you have any insights into what is needed to succeed?
A: Helping build an organization that delivers to its customers is difficult but not unattainable. I have helped many of my clients in this transformational journey, and I have seen that technology and data do not work like a wand that will magically solve all your issues. One needs to have the relevant capabilities, skills, customer-centric organization, and a technology-driven leadership team to help the delivery of these customer engagements.
Q: On retail clients, we saw how badly they were affected in 2020. How can you help them adapt to the current times?
A: This is one of my favorite topics of discussion. Retailers are doubling down on digital, and ecommerce is the way to go. Currently, 60% of customers’ interactions with retailers are online, and companies are leveraging the power of artificial intelligence and augmented reality to ramp up their investments in personalization, location, voice shopping and chatbots. Before COVID, retailers were slow to adopt into ecommerce. Technology that had been hopeful in the industry suddenly became a lifeline for survival. There are two main components to make ecommerce successful for the retail industry, and that is last mile and store fulfillment. To explain further, today’s consumers aren’t keen on excuses, especially when it comes to accessibility, affordability, and convenience. The pandemic is no longer a reasonable excuse for not delivering orders on time, so retailers are vying for limited shipping capacity in the last mile due to surges in online shopping. Even the most advanced ecommerce capabilities can’t mask the importance of fulfillment, as delivery becomes a cornerstone of the experience. As far as the stores, consumers will buy online and pick up in-store more often in the future, meaning the store as a fulfillment center can be an effective strategy. This will require systems and business units to communicate with each other to deliver on the promise. As services scale, so must retailers’ ability to deliver a consistently positive experience. So regardless of how consumer behavior changes, retailers must be prepared to continue developing stronger, deeper relationships with their customers both online and in person.
Q: What’s next for Karolina? Are you on any special projects?
A: I have a few special projects, but the most notable of them is my upcoming book about my sales prospecting journey, which teaches professionals how to sell in a post-COVID environment and ramp up my social media. I designed my sales method when I had to change my entire sales process in 2020, which has stuck and is here to stay, earning me major success. I hope to have it released in 2024. I believe young professionals and professionals with decades of experience will be able to get something out of my book to use in their own sales approaches. Additionally, I have hired a brand strategy company for my social media and am looking to put forth the content needed for empowering women into STEM and leadership roles.
Follow Karolina Gujska on Instagram to learn more about her journey in helping Fortune 500 brands and mentoring women of all ages in business.