People & Strategy Summer 2017 Vol. 40 Issue 3 - 53
People + Strategy: Artificial intelligence, the Internet of things (IoT), a
digital strategy, and other emerging
technologies are increasingly becoming part of a company's strategy.
What is happening to your strategy
and execution in this regard?
David Fairhurst: We have fundamentally changed the trajectory of our
business over the past two years. Last
month we announced our Velocity
Growth Plan, a customer-centric strategy to drive guest counts-the number of customer transactions, which
is informed by deep consumer insight
conducted across multiple markets-
through very specific targeted actions
to retain the millions of customers
that visit us every day, to regain lapsed
customers, and to convert casual customers to committed customers.
Josh Walden: At Intel, we describe
our strategy as "the virtuous cycle of
growth." At the base of that cycle is
IoT. Intel is actively driving technical
deliver a better, more cost-effective
health care experience.
ment and where we have to create new
Gerard Verweij: All of these technologies have a profound impact because
some of them are also disruptive to
almost every industry and sector out
there. We are at the next industrial revolution. It will have profound
changes on jobs and people. At PwC,
we are currently transforming and disrupting our own organization in terms
of how we need to deliver services to
our clients. In addition, we are coming
up with new services or transforming
our existing services.
Josh: In many areas, I see Intel as
market-leading in terms of driving
and commercializing solutions that
emanate from our labs. A critical element of our strategy-and something
that clearly affects our people-is our
desire and need to move quickly in
advancing research and development
into commercial-ready solutions. This
past year, we formed the New Technology Group, which includes Intel Labs,
to leverage the existing research we
are doing and accelerate technologies
that drive some of the most cutting
edge, disruptive solutions in the
Tim: I don't think there is another
business other than books and music
that has penetrated the market to
such an extent and scale the way we
have in pharmacy. We have built a
great virtual home delivery business
that is ideal for people who are taking
medicine for illnesses like diabetes
and high blood pressure-maintenance medications that you take for
The penultimate value comes when you have
the right combination of AI and humans working
together, depending on the skills and what the
goals are. That is where the real incremental
values come in.
disruptions that enable solutions from
drones and wearables to autonomous
cars and smart cities. Intelligence is
moving closer to the edge. Combine
this with artificial intelligence and decision-making and action is also moving closer to the edge. Those things
and devices are collecting massive
amounts of data, which is being fed
through connectivity up to the cloud,
driving demand for greater storage
and compute capabilities.
Tim Wentworth: Health care consumers now compare their experience in
health care to their experience watching TV, streaming movies, or ordering
music or books online. Those interactions create expectations, and in turn
guide us to evaluate opportunities to
a long time. We deliver convenience,
cost savings and quality, all of which
are accelerated by technology.
P+S: How much are you driving
change to your strategy versus facing
external disruption that is forcing a
change to your strategy?
Gerard: We are of the mindset that if
we don't disrupt, somebody else will.
We want to be ahead of the curve, so
we are looking at it broadly. We are
also looking at what the new businesses are that we should establish right
now. What are the more traditional
businesses that we might need to
make changes to? We set up a new
business venture office, and the team
is highly focused on the disruptive ele-
David: Our turnaround phase was
focused on addressing business challenges caused primarily by external
disruption, in particular where we
had failed to keep up with customer
expectations. The aim for this Velocity
Growth Plan, and our plan accelerators such as digital, is to restore McDonald's as a disruptive force in our
sector, just as we have been in the past.
P+S: Within the transformation you
just described, what role will AI,
machine learning, data mining, and
others like it play in your successful
execution of the strategy?
David: Across the whole business, the
potential impact of emerging technologies is enormous.
Josh: Everything is going to change-
from wearables, to the automation of
factories, to autonomous automobiles,
and, in the near future, flights. We
are solving real-world problems, but in
my opinion, the technology isn't ready
today. Capitalizing on things like AI,
machine learning, and data mining is
critical and key to Intel's strategy, and
it's 100 percent aligned with where we
Tim: Data without insights is noise.
We have pharmacy data on more than
80 million Americans, representing
1.4 billion prescriptions each year.
That data creates insights that power
VOLUME 40 | ISSUE 3 | SUMMER 2017