Q&A with Tara O'Sullivan, CMO at SKILLSOFT

ONDECK | March 15, 2019

Tara O’Sullivan, the CMO of Skillsoft shares her insights on the impact of digital transformation on marketers and the need to focus on slashing the wide gender pay gap. With over 25 years of experience including B2B marketing in Ireland, EMEA and the US, Tara has extensive expertise in using marketing to effect change.

Here are her thoughts on women in marketing and the changing dynamics of the profession.

MEDIA 7: Tara, how old were you when you had your first paying job?
TARA O'SULLIVAN:
14 – I worked for my Dad photocopying manuals for software training. I loved the work, I loved being in amongst the team of people who were there. There was a lot of fun with the other people who worked there, and I learnt a lot of lessons on dealing with people, working on end user manuals which were like 500 pages thick, making sure they were all collated properly, the cover looked good – all to provide a real sense of the importance of the training.

"Marketing teams are not aligned to what technology can do for them and how it can transform the business."



M7: What do you consider the biggest challenges for a CMO these days?
TS: Digital transformation. I believe the impact of digital transformation is impacting the CMO even more than other areas of the business. There are so many tools that can help the CMO get the data s/he needs, but it is figuring out which ones are the most relevant, timely and useful. I think a lot of marketing teams are not aligned to what technology can do for them and how it can transform the business.
The other major challenge is around proving to the business the benefit of marketing. As well as the funnel, and marketing sourced OI, we also need to better measure the branding impact on the business and how it supports revenue.


"Agile marketing is becoming more and more the standard, and in order to be agile, you need to be able to pivot."



M7: How important is learning and unlearning in today’s digital age of data and automation?
TS: Learning is the most important thing in my view. From figuring out what the new version of Excel can do for you (LOADS) to determining the best tech stack your marketing organization needs – we need to be learning. Agile marketing is becoming more and more the standard, and in order to be agile, you need to be able to pivot. This means that you need to be continually changing your approach in order to make the company more successful. Agile marketing is a brand new mindset for marketing people – there isn’t an annual budget, the team decides what to spend it on a quarterly basis, so sometimes you will be investing in SEO, or investing in demand generation depending on the needs of the business.


"The gender pay gap is wide and people think about it as being 80 cents on the dollar."



M7: Is Skillsoft closing the gap between the number of men and women in marketing? What are your views on gender equality in the present corporate world?
TS: Well I always thought marketing is different – I assumed that the majority of people entering marketing are women, but that’s not strictly true. Research from Axonn shows that women are only slightly more likely than men to enter the marketing world (21% vs 16%).
Marketing Week (a UK-based publication) carried out a survey and found that  female marketers earn less than male marketers in every sector and in every role, except that of marketing assistant.
Let’s remember though that the gender pay gap is wide and people think about it as being 80 cents on the dollar.  This is awful – but think about it over the lifetime of the female worker. Recent research analyzed a longitudinal dataset which shows total earnings across the most recent 15 years for all workers who worked in at least one year. The study found that women workers faced a wage gap of 51% in the 2001-2015 period. The research also found that the cost of taking time out of the labor force is exorbitant for women. For those who took just one year off from work, their annual earnings were 39% lower than women who worked all 15 years between 2001 and 2015.

ABOUT SKILLSOFT

SKILLSOFT is a global leader in corporate learning, delivering beautiful technology and engaging content that drives business impact for modern enterprises. Skillsoft comprises three award-winning systems that support learning, performance and success: Skillsoft learning content, the Percipio intelligent learning experience platform and the SumTotal suite for Human Capital Management.

Skillsoft provides a comprehensive selection of cloud-based corporate learning content, including courses, videos, books and other resources on Business and Management Skills, Leadership Development, Digital Transformation, Technology and Developer, Productivity and Collaboration Tools and Compliance. Percipio’s intuitive design engages modern learners and its consumer-led experience assists in accelerating learning. The SumTotal suite features four key components built on a unified platform: Learning Management, Talent Management, Talent Acquisition and Workforce Management.

Skillsoft is trusted by thousands of the world’s leading organizations, including 65 percent of the Fortune 500. Learn more at www.skillsoft.com.

More C-Suite on deck

Small businesses are now competing in a marketplace dominated by low-cost large enterprises, says Herby Duverne, CEO at Windwalker Group.

Media 7 | June 6, 2022

Herby Duverne, CEO of Windwalker Group, discusses the best practices for developing strategic partnerships, brand awareness strategies, the best way businesses can tackle challenges, and more. Continue reading to find out more about Human Capital Development via Corporate and Government Training.

Read More

Q&A with Andy Brown, CEO at Engage

Media 7 | May 28, 2020

Andy Brown, Chief Executive Officer at ENGAGE has worked in the research and consulting industry for 25 years. He was previously a Partner at Mercer Consulting, a Global Practice Leader at The Empower Group (the strategic consulting division of Manpower), Managing Director of YouGov Consulting and Head of Research at The Gallup Organization. Andy co-founded ENGAGE and has worked for the company since 2008 and, in 2013, co-led an MBO of the firm. He works with CEOs, boards and executive teams in FTSE 100 and Fortune 500 firms, as well as with a range of fast-growing entrepreneurial start-ups. MEDIA 7: What are you most passionate about? ANDY BROWN: I’m passionate about four key things: helping organisations improve their performance; helping leaders to be as effective as possible; helping employees to feel a sense of purpose in their work; and, of course, my family!

Read More

Q&A with Cameron Worth, CEO & Founder, SharpEnd

Media 7 | April 22, 2020

Cameron Worth, CEO & Founder of SharpEnd leads the company’s mission to help brands move closer than ever to consumers by connecting packaging, retail and experiential activity. He is a regular speaker and writer on how to build brands in a connected world. He has spoken at Cannes, the Festival of Marketing, LuxePack Monaco and New York, Ad:Week Europe and New York, DMA, the Connected Consumer Conference, Mobile World Congress and the IoT World Forum. MEDIA 7: How did the idea of “the agency of things” come to your mind? CAMERON WORTH: SharpEnd was created in 2015 as the world’s first Internet of Things focused agency, so there is a slight play on words when we say we’re the Agency of Things. I think the idea of giving things their own agency is an interesting concept, and the strapline fits our capabilities on multiple levels. M7: In what way does technology drive the association of SharpEnd with global brands? What approaches are followed to enable sustainability? CW: Our simple proposition is to help build brands in a connected world, and to do that you must always start with identified consumer needs or pain points and look at technology as just an enabler to deliver an appropriate solution (when appropriate).  Take the issue of sustainability, which is often a pain point for brands that grapple with issues such as how we can reward sustainable behaviour change. One of our approaches to this could be to look at communicating the recycling credentials of the different products. Whilst the consumer can engage with a product as part of a wider consumer experience, the same technology could also house content that could tell you whether the product is recyclable, which type of bin it goes in etc. SharpEnd’s work with Unilever is a case in point. We built a digital product that incentivised recycling through gamification but also served to educate through informing people how and where to recycle in a clear fashion. All users had to do was simply scan their packaging to have all this information at their disposal.

Read More

Small businesses are now competing in a marketplace dominated by low-cost large enterprises, says Herby Duverne, CEO at Windwalker Group.

Media 7 | June 6, 2022

Herby Duverne, CEO of Windwalker Group, discusses the best practices for developing strategic partnerships, brand awareness strategies, the best way businesses can tackle challenges, and more. Continue reading to find out more about Human Capital Development via Corporate and Government Training.

Read More

Q&A with Andy Brown, CEO at Engage

Media 7 | May 28, 2020

Andy Brown, Chief Executive Officer at ENGAGE has worked in the research and consulting industry for 25 years. He was previously a Partner at Mercer Consulting, a Global Practice Leader at The Empower Group (the strategic consulting division of Manpower), Managing Director of YouGov Consulting and Head of Research at The Gallup Organization. Andy co-founded ENGAGE and has worked for the company since 2008 and, in 2013, co-led an MBO of the firm. He works with CEOs, boards and executive teams in FTSE 100 and Fortune 500 firms, as well as with a range of fast-growing entrepreneurial start-ups. MEDIA 7: What are you most passionate about? ANDY BROWN: I’m passionate about four key things: helping organisations improve their performance; helping leaders to be as effective as possible; helping employees to feel a sense of purpose in their work; and, of course, my family!

Read More

Q&A with Cameron Worth, CEO & Founder, SharpEnd

Media 7 | April 22, 2020

Cameron Worth, CEO & Founder of SharpEnd leads the company’s mission to help brands move closer than ever to consumers by connecting packaging, retail and experiential activity. He is a regular speaker and writer on how to build brands in a connected world. He has spoken at Cannes, the Festival of Marketing, LuxePack Monaco and New York, Ad:Week Europe and New York, DMA, the Connected Consumer Conference, Mobile World Congress and the IoT World Forum. MEDIA 7: How did the idea of “the agency of things” come to your mind? CAMERON WORTH: SharpEnd was created in 2015 as the world’s first Internet of Things focused agency, so there is a slight play on words when we say we’re the Agency of Things. I think the idea of giving things their own agency is an interesting concept, and the strapline fits our capabilities on multiple levels. M7: In what way does technology drive the association of SharpEnd with global brands? What approaches are followed to enable sustainability? CW: Our simple proposition is to help build brands in a connected world, and to do that you must always start with identified consumer needs or pain points and look at technology as just an enabler to deliver an appropriate solution (when appropriate).  Take the issue of sustainability, which is often a pain point for brands that grapple with issues such as how we can reward sustainable behaviour change. One of our approaches to this could be to look at communicating the recycling credentials of the different products. Whilst the consumer can engage with a product as part of a wider consumer experience, the same technology could also house content that could tell you whether the product is recyclable, which type of bin it goes in etc. SharpEnd’s work with Unilever is a case in point. We built a digital product that incentivised recycling through gamification but also served to educate through informing people how and where to recycle in a clear fashion. All users had to do was simply scan their packaging to have all this information at their disposal.

Read More

Related News

BUSINESS STRATEGY

Priority Software Acquires Silverbyte, A Leading Provider of Property Management Software (PMS)

Priority Software Ltd | June 28, 2022

Priority Software Ltd., a leading global provider of business management solutions, announced the enhancement of its product offering with the acquisition of Silverbyte, a leading provider of property management software. The purchase agreement with Silverbyte will broaden Priority's business management suite offering to customers operating in the hospitality sector. Operating in over 30 countries, Silverbyte provides an innovative, scalable platform that allows accommodation providers of all sizes and from various hospitality industry segments to easily and intuitively manage all aspects of their property, from end-to-end in-house operations to external distribution and booking systems. Silverbyte's solution is implemented in leading hotel chains worldwide, such as Leonardo, Fattal, Crowne Plaza, and Holiday Inn. The acquisition of Silverbyte is the fifth acquisition made in the past 15 months by Priority, which continues to expand with an impressive range of solutions that give Priority a significant advantage over competitors. Silverbyte's acquisition is synergetic to the company's operation and will enable Priority to continue delivering highly advanced solutions through the integration with Priority's cloud ERP and retail solutions. By acquiring leading solution providers in multiple business sectors, Priority assumes a leading position in different market verticals, including retail, education, and hospitality. "Silverbyte's innovative solutions expand our business management offering for the hospitality industry. Combining our technology and market reach with Silverbyte's solutions will increase our capability to deliver new, innovative solutions to the global market. This acquisition is another important step in Priority's evolution and vertical expansion, positioning the company as a market leader in the fields of ERP, Retail management, HRM, Logistics, Education, and now hospitality." -Sagive Greenspan, Priority CEO. Silverbyte CEO, Einav Peleg, said: I am very pleased to join a leading technology company. Being part of Priority will allow us to offer an end-to-end solution, developed by a single company, that includes an ERP system, point of sale (POS), workforce management and Silverbyte's PMS system. The synergy between the companies will provides a unique value to the hospitality market. ABOUT PRIORITY Priority Software Ltd., a Fortissimo and TA Associates company, is a leading provider of scalable, agile, and open cloud-based business management solutions for various industries and organizations of all sizes, from global enterprises to small and growing businesses. Recognized by top industry experts and analysts for its product innovation, Priority provides real-time access to business data and insights from any desktop or mobile device, enabling organizations to increase operational efficiency, improve the customer experience, identify new opportunities, and outpace the competition. With offices in the US, UK, Belgium, and Israel and a global network of business partners, Priority empowers 75,000 customers in 40 countries with smart and intuitive business management platforms that drive accelerated organizational growth. For more information, visit www.priority-software.com.

Read More

TECHNOLOGY

The Role of Technology as Lenders Embrace Change, According to Wolters Kluwer Compliance Solutions Leader

Wolters Kluwer | June 28, 2022

Given that many financial institutions' transformation lists to adopt new technologies have grown in recent years, having a clear understanding of the ultimate purpose of that technology is critical to getting it right and embracing significant change. According to the CEO of Wolters Kluwer Compliance Solutions, in a recently published interview, the mindset required for technology teams to successfully develop—and implement—those same technologies to meet the complex challenges of financial services customers. “They’re not just creating code… (or) different architectures. It’s linking it all the way to the actual impact that it has for our end customers, in a Mortgage Professional America feature, Tech Must be Purpose-Built. It sounds like simple work, but I’ve seen a lot of organizations where you ask somebody what they’re working on and how that impacts their own community, and someone would say ‘I don’t really know.’ That’s been a major initiative for us—to further engage our entire technology organization to not only create great technology, but to know how it benefits others.” -Steve Meirink, Executive Vice President and General Manager for Wolters Kluwer Compliance Solutions He notes that purpose-built technology has led the way in many financial services arenas, from Wolters Kluwer assisting lenders in quickly accessing critical small business funding during the pandemic crisis to the development of digital assets "in all lending areas, including mortgage" that are fundamentally changing the lending industry for the better. Wolters Kluwer Compliance Solutions is a market leader and trusted provider of risk management and regulatory compliance solutions and services to insurance companies, banks and credit unions, and securities firms in the United States. The company, which is part of Wolters Kluwer's Governance, Risk & Compliance (GRC) division, assists financial institutions in efficiently managing risk and regulatory compliance obligations, as well as gaining the insights required to focus on better serving their customers and growing their business.

Read More

MANAGEMENT,TECHNOLOGY

Intuit QuickBooks Launches a Campaign to Reach Latino-Owned Small Businesses and Support Their Growth

Intuit | June 30, 2022

On July 5, Intuit QuickBooks will launch a new campaign to encourage Latino business owners to think like a "negocito" — a small business — and instead focus on the tools that will help them become a "negociote," with a big business mindset. Intuit, the global technology platform that produces QuickBooks, TurboTax, Mint, Credit Karma, and Mailchimp, will feature soccer legend Javier "Chicharito" Hernández in a new commercial. The commercial and campaign aim to reach both English- and Spanish-speaking Latino-owned small businesses, who are the fastest-growing group of entrepreneurs in the United States, having grown by 34% in the last decade. Chicharito has become a cultural icon in many Latino communities due to his achievements on the soccer field. Chicharito embodies what it means to work hard and achieve great things. Access to private funding is one of the most significant barriers that Latino small businesses face. Businesses can use QuickBooks to automate and streamline their financial processes, pay employees, get paid quickly, and gain access to capital. Almost 60% of QuickBooks Capital customers would not have qualified for a loan anywhere else. Furthermore, entrepreneurs who applied through QuickBooks Capital saw a threefold increase in approval rates. “The rapid growth of Latino-owned small businesses has accelerated our efforts to drive more awareness of our financial tools, Knowing the many challenges that they are facing on a daily basis, we believe that it’s a critical time for QuickBooks to be a partner to Latino entrepreneurs and help them prosper.” -Dan McCarthy, senior vice president and chief business officer at Intuit

Read More

BUSINESS STRATEGY

Priority Software Acquires Silverbyte, A Leading Provider of Property Management Software (PMS)

Priority Software Ltd | June 28, 2022

Priority Software Ltd., a leading global provider of business management solutions, announced the enhancement of its product offering with the acquisition of Silverbyte, a leading provider of property management software. The purchase agreement with Silverbyte will broaden Priority's business management suite offering to customers operating in the hospitality sector. Operating in over 30 countries, Silverbyte provides an innovative, scalable platform that allows accommodation providers of all sizes and from various hospitality industry segments to easily and intuitively manage all aspects of their property, from end-to-end in-house operations to external distribution and booking systems. Silverbyte's solution is implemented in leading hotel chains worldwide, such as Leonardo, Fattal, Crowne Plaza, and Holiday Inn. The acquisition of Silverbyte is the fifth acquisition made in the past 15 months by Priority, which continues to expand with an impressive range of solutions that give Priority a significant advantage over competitors. Silverbyte's acquisition is synergetic to the company's operation and will enable Priority to continue delivering highly advanced solutions through the integration with Priority's cloud ERP and retail solutions. By acquiring leading solution providers in multiple business sectors, Priority assumes a leading position in different market verticals, including retail, education, and hospitality. "Silverbyte's innovative solutions expand our business management offering for the hospitality industry. Combining our technology and market reach with Silverbyte's solutions will increase our capability to deliver new, innovative solutions to the global market. This acquisition is another important step in Priority's evolution and vertical expansion, positioning the company as a market leader in the fields of ERP, Retail management, HRM, Logistics, Education, and now hospitality." -Sagive Greenspan, Priority CEO. Silverbyte CEO, Einav Peleg, said: I am very pleased to join a leading technology company. Being part of Priority will allow us to offer an end-to-end solution, developed by a single company, that includes an ERP system, point of sale (POS), workforce management and Silverbyte's PMS system. The synergy between the companies will provides a unique value to the hospitality market. ABOUT PRIORITY Priority Software Ltd., a Fortissimo and TA Associates company, is a leading provider of scalable, agile, and open cloud-based business management solutions for various industries and organizations of all sizes, from global enterprises to small and growing businesses. Recognized by top industry experts and analysts for its product innovation, Priority provides real-time access to business data and insights from any desktop or mobile device, enabling organizations to increase operational efficiency, improve the customer experience, identify new opportunities, and outpace the competition. With offices in the US, UK, Belgium, and Israel and a global network of business partners, Priority empowers 75,000 customers in 40 countries with smart and intuitive business management platforms that drive accelerated organizational growth. For more information, visit www.priority-software.com.

Read More

TECHNOLOGY

The Role of Technology as Lenders Embrace Change, According to Wolters Kluwer Compliance Solutions Leader

Wolters Kluwer | June 28, 2022

Given that many financial institutions' transformation lists to adopt new technologies have grown in recent years, having a clear understanding of the ultimate purpose of that technology is critical to getting it right and embracing significant change. According to the CEO of Wolters Kluwer Compliance Solutions, in a recently published interview, the mindset required for technology teams to successfully develop—and implement—those same technologies to meet the complex challenges of financial services customers. “They’re not just creating code… (or) different architectures. It’s linking it all the way to the actual impact that it has for our end customers, in a Mortgage Professional America feature, Tech Must be Purpose-Built. It sounds like simple work, but I’ve seen a lot of organizations where you ask somebody what they’re working on and how that impacts their own community, and someone would say ‘I don’t really know.’ That’s been a major initiative for us—to further engage our entire technology organization to not only create great technology, but to know how it benefits others.” -Steve Meirink, Executive Vice President and General Manager for Wolters Kluwer Compliance Solutions He notes that purpose-built technology has led the way in many financial services arenas, from Wolters Kluwer assisting lenders in quickly accessing critical small business funding during the pandemic crisis to the development of digital assets "in all lending areas, including mortgage" that are fundamentally changing the lending industry for the better. Wolters Kluwer Compliance Solutions is a market leader and trusted provider of risk management and regulatory compliance solutions and services to insurance companies, banks and credit unions, and securities firms in the United States. The company, which is part of Wolters Kluwer's Governance, Risk & Compliance (GRC) division, assists financial institutions in efficiently managing risk and regulatory compliance obligations, as well as gaining the insights required to focus on better serving their customers and growing their business.

Read More

MANAGEMENT,TECHNOLOGY

Intuit QuickBooks Launches a Campaign to Reach Latino-Owned Small Businesses and Support Their Growth

Intuit | June 30, 2022

On July 5, Intuit QuickBooks will launch a new campaign to encourage Latino business owners to think like a "negocito" — a small business — and instead focus on the tools that will help them become a "negociote," with a big business mindset. Intuit, the global technology platform that produces QuickBooks, TurboTax, Mint, Credit Karma, and Mailchimp, will feature soccer legend Javier "Chicharito" Hernández in a new commercial. The commercial and campaign aim to reach both English- and Spanish-speaking Latino-owned small businesses, who are the fastest-growing group of entrepreneurs in the United States, having grown by 34% in the last decade. Chicharito has become a cultural icon in many Latino communities due to his achievements on the soccer field. Chicharito embodies what it means to work hard and achieve great things. Access to private funding is one of the most significant barriers that Latino small businesses face. Businesses can use QuickBooks to automate and streamline their financial processes, pay employees, get paid quickly, and gain access to capital. Almost 60% of QuickBooks Capital customers would not have qualified for a loan anywhere else. Furthermore, entrepreneurs who applied through QuickBooks Capital saw a threefold increase in approval rates. “The rapid growth of Latino-owned small businesses has accelerated our efforts to drive more awareness of our financial tools, Knowing the many challenges that they are facing on a daily basis, we believe that it’s a critical time for QuickBooks to be a partner to Latino entrepreneurs and help them prosper.” -Dan McCarthy, senior vice president and chief business officer at Intuit

Read More