As the General Manager of Sales, Strategy and Planning based in Sydney, Andrew Cordwell spends his days getting very close to clients, identifying the challenges these companies face and then co-creating innovative solutions that will empower them to realise their ambitions.

He hasn’t always worked in tech, but Andrew says a common thread in his career has been helping companies understand their strengths and build on them. Andrew spent the first two decades of his career in the media and advertising industry, working with News Limited, ninemsn, PBL Media and Nine Network. In 2013 Andrew moved into technology and enterprise, consulting with several major sports organisations, including the Cronulla Sharks and Golf Australia.

Next, he worked on the launch of Telstra’s first connected stadium – going on to win a David Thodey Telstra CEO award in 2015, and the prestigious 2017 IOT Global Industry award for their ground-breaking innovations within this stadium footprint. At Telstra, he successfully ran their digital advertising media business, and was Head of Consulting for Business Technology and Services.

In mid-2018, Andrew moved to Datacom, becoming the Principal at Foundry, where he worked with clients to hold innovation workshops, looking across AI, emerging tech and VR to create a transformational roadmap. Using design thinking, Andrew and his team unlocked problems and created better outcomes, supporting businesses to create more value, more quickly.

“Essentially we help our clients design right-fit business solutions, enabled by IT,” says Andrew. “We capture customer and employee journeys and look at them end-to-end so a client can undergo a full business transformation. We find better ways to collaborate and clarify, and we bring that mindset into all the work we do.”

When he started at Datacom nearly six years ago, Andrew felt as though the business was a sleeping giant because of its massive capability versus its low profile. Although it’s no longer flying under the radar, he says Datacom retains its humble, modest and pragmatic approach to problem-solving.

“Datacom is doing great work in business transformation and innovation. We’re growing and diversifying, we hire really good people, and everyone’s very down to earth.” 

As for what he has planned next, Andrew says he and the team are booked up for the next few months and looking forward to helping customers tackle their big challenges and transform critical aspects of their business.

Five tips for business success in a tough market

With economic headwinds forecast for the next 12-18 months, Andrew shares his top five tips to help businesses set themselves up to thrive.

1. Start with the metrics

It doesn’t matter what the economy is doing, you’ll find guidance for your business by studying the data from your own operations and customers. If you can use your metrics to guide you, find common ground and build a solution that works for the end user, you will succeed in any economic environment.

2. Flexibility is essential

When you’re operating in uncertain times, being adaptable is the key to surviving and thriving. Think ahead and be ready to pivot. Ask yourself and your team: What are the right strategies for the current landscape?

3. Lean in

Andrew believes too few people really lean in at work to help their peers succeed. Everyone should be really invested in seeing their colleagues do well and supporting them to succeed, because when one person does their job well it raises the performance across the whole team. If you’re not talking to your peers and sharing what you know then you’re doing them a disservice – and you’re not helping your team or the end consumer.

4. Remember that customers are becoming more demanding

Expectations are higher than ever. Whether it’s a product, service or thing, everybody wants more when they’re making a purchase. The challenge is to hit your business objectives while also managing the mindset of consumers and their higher expectations. That means having some honest conversations.

5. Know what’s important to your team

When you consider your marketing, you often think about where customers are in their lifecycle. Taking the same approach to understanding your employees can help you build a great team. Where are my employees in their cycle of life? How can I help them get to where they want to go while delivering company results? Teams should know each other’s KPIs, their key priorities and their plan to deliver. Companies that share more of those aims and insights will do better.

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