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Opinion

Everything is open to change

It’s the holiday season, so my wife dragged me off to Disneyland with the children. It was a great experience but, halfway through, I saw this t-shirt: “It was all started by a mouse” Now it wasn’t. It was started by Walt and his brother who became a formidable team. …

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Eyes wide open

I sat through a soul-destroying meeting the other day. The meeting was with a C-level decision maker in a bank, and we were brainstorming. Ideas were flowing and, at the end of the ideation process, we went to see the C-level person to get his view. It wasn’t good. You …

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My worst prediction ever

I was asked the other day about my worst prediction ever made. My answer may surprise some, but it was the view that intermediaries would disappear as technology takes over. I made that prediction about independent financial advisors back in the 1990s as call centres appeared. It didn’t come true. …

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Change is the only constant

As banks embrace digital transformation, there is a high level of discomfort amongst bank staff around the change. First, they hear almost every day that artificial intelligence and machine learning will automate their jobs. They fear the future. They fear losing their job. How can you reassure them that they …

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Is there any way to change the status quo?

No, I’m not talking about Francis Rossi but the issue of how to achieve sustainability. This came up during a lunch, where my lunch colleague had picked up on my discussions of sustainable finance, and started to debate how we could change things. The issue we agreed is with governments, …

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How can you be AI with DD?

No, I don’t mean Attention Deficit Disorder, which would be ADD, but I mean Artificially Intelligent with Dumb Data. Now, I know I moan on and on about fragmented legacy systems, but I honestly have no idea how a bank could ever be able to compete with an Apple or …

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Partnering in the ecosystem is not easy

Talking of partnering, many years ago, I was assigned the role of negotiating a contract with a partner for a large technology firm. The partner specialised in the insurance markets, my focus at that time, and we got into the game of contract wording. For quite a while, it was …

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Platform, marketplace, ecosystem … buzzword bingo!

I encounter lots of banter about platforms, marketplaces and ecosystems, and do wonder in the flippant way people use them interchangeably whether they really understand what they are talking about. I’m sure many do but I’m also sure some people throw them into the conversation like a buzzword bingo game. …

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What is banking in the cloud?

Over ten years ago, I started blogging about cloud computing and financial services. Many banks dismissed the idea back then as “the regulator wouldn’t allow it”. Then the regulator did allow it in some countries, but banks were confused about the regulatory position. For example, if they use cloud services …

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