The year 2020 was one with many challenges and opportunities, one of them being radical digital transformation as consumers and businesses moved toward digital solutions in ways they have never before.

Pavan Kochar

Certree’s Pavan Kochar and iMMUTABLE’s Robbie Ferguson, both members of YPO, joined Jason Feifer from Entrepreneur magazine for a chat about what the future holds for businesses, the new customer experience and technology’s role in 2021.

In what is shaping up to be the year of the consumer, digital transformation is top of mind for both CEOs. Pavan is a 15-year tech veteran, and Ferguson co-founded one of the highest -grossing blockchain gaming platforms in the world. Both agree that digitization not only incorporates the use of technology into a business but also a certain amount of change of leadership to promote innovations and new business models. Legacy businesses especially need to adopt it to solve their existing analogue problems, which hampers productivity and performance. It transforms the customer experience, leadership and culture, the enablement of workforce, agility of operation and the iteration of digital technology.

Where have we come in the past year and where are we going?

Robbie Ferguson

According to Kochar, “2021 definitely accelerated trends in how we work, consume content, shop, connect and more. Digital documents and legislation around this brings about the whole notion of trust. Physical documents in many industries are still the norm. As digital documents can be easily falsified, trust becomes even more important.”

She says that trust is going to become more of an identity, building trust among organizations and people. Consumers need to understand where their data is going and how it is being used. So, awareness, transparency and control of data will be really important.

Kochar continues, “This will require a buy-in from users and require a true change management system in organizations. It will be both a cultural and psychological change that has accelerated with the pandemic.”

Some of Fergusen’s predictions for tech advancements moving forward:

  • Blockchain integration within companies will become more common.
  • In the age of the consumer, privacy legislation will take center stage.
  • What is truth? What will protection laws in the age of synthetic generated AI voices look like?
  • We will experience a cultural shift in how we think about aging as a disease rather than a state.
  • Advancements will continue in Generative Pre-trained Transformer 3 (GTP-3) an autoregressive language model that uses deep learning to produce human-like text.
  • We will see computer system advancements for protein folding, which supports the research of diseases like Alzheimer’s, Huntington’s disease, cystic fibrosis and many cancers.

Catch more of the YPO Presents Ask the Experts conversation.