Maria gets candid about Agile and Digital work culture
Last week I got a chance to interview, Maria Ebro Andreasen, Head of Change and transformation from Danske Bank where we got to hear her thoughts on digital culture agile and what part of digital transformation excites her.
Maria has a Masters Degree in Psychology and Philosophy, a coaching degree, a SAFe-, Scrum master-, CAL1- and Organizational Development Certificate in her backpack, her energy and focus lies on how transforming organizations and implementing agile ways of working is really about changing how people think and changing the culture. Understanding the psychology behind this, helps build the change strategy that truly affects and engages the employees to change.
Digital Transformation currently is a latest trend in the Banking industry. What does Digital Transformation mean to and what part of the transformation excites you?
“I actually believe digital transformation has been on the agenda for the Banking industry for the past decades – but only very few banks have succeeded in actually transforming. For us, it is a journey that is only really starting now – with great haste and a very burning platform as our starting point.
For me, it is about simplifying our solutions and optimizing our productivity, so that our developers and employees in general, can focus much more on the customers and on building the right solutions, and minimize the time they spend on manual, time-consuming tasks, that could be avoided.
I am mostly excited about building an organization and a platform that actually enables teams to be empowered and work without dependencies and waiting time on others – just imagine the thrill of actually developing and releasing something smoothly, seamlessly and easily to a customer.
“When asked about Danske bank’s roadmap to digital transformation to gkeep up with the growing customer needs, Maria said “I think we fit perfectly with these statistics. Our strategy and our roadmap is clearly speeding up as a rapid pace.”
We hear a lot of people talking about agile. What are the benefits of bringing ‘Agile’ to digital transformation?
“Well, I could answer this is several ways…the banking-employee in me would argue, that working agile in cross-functional teams eliminates dependencies and enhance productivity, thereby supporting the cost-perspective of the digital transformation.
The IT employee within me would argue, that we end up digitalizing the right solutions by focusing on the most valuable delivery at every sprint, and that we can continue growing our digitalization capabilities with the focus on continuously improving that agile brings to the table. Lastly, the Psychologist in me would argue, that agile enables the exact organizational culture for which change, transparency, collaboration and trust can grow – which amongst other benefits, supports the breaking down of siloes, that is such a huge part of succeeding with your digital transformation.” You can hear more of her thoughts about the psychology part at our London conference.
When we talk about Digital Transformation, we cannot fail to mention the role of technologies like AI, Blockchain, IoT, cloud and many more. These technologies make the banking process secure and available 24 x 7 but are a direct competition to employees. So my big question is: How banks can prepare for a cultural shift, settings aside employees fear and nurture a digital culture to work in coordination with these advance technologies?
“This is a good question. I believe it is important, that you keep this in mind, and create clear career paths for the employees, where they can see the different, natural, next job opportunities, should their role disappear in the future. This is a big job, that has to be taken on in collaboration between the leadership and HR, to continuously ensure the growing and nurturing of your talents, to enable them to lift and shift into potentially new tasks or roles.”
Editor Asst. Conference Producer
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