I posted this on my LinkedIn page May 29th 2022. There have already been many changes in the financial services industry with digital transformation, but my thoughts about behavior change have not changed.
Many articles relating to digital transformations appear on my LinkedIn feed these days. My current focus is the transformation of financial services. Financial services have been slow to embrace change. But as many industries have previously transformed their services, there are lessons to be learned. One of the first transformations was the photographic industry, of which I have first hand experience.
From 1983 until 2010 my wife and I built a photography business. It started as a portrait studio and in 1985 became a one hour photo lab. We experienced the rapid digital transformation in the photography industry first hand.
For context, in 1983 I was printing black and white passport photos by hand using similar technology developed in the late 1800s.
17 years later, we were offering online digital photo printing services.
When we sold our business in 2010 we no longer processed film and the dark room had been used for storage for many years.
Digital transformation, photo industry
The photo industry digital transformation decreased the processing time and lowered the cost per photo. It increased the quality of photos and made photographs more accessible for everyone. Ironically, the result was a massive decrease in photos printed. And the demise of many companies, Kodak being one of the best known.
This transformation also resulted in more images captured and shared by more people than ever before in the history of photography. As the Kodak sign reads, Share moments. Share life.
Strategy, are we ready for change?
For the last nine years my involvement in the financial services industry has been as a director for credit unions. One of the duties of a director and the board of directors is help build a strategy to embrace change and to secure a future for the organization.
Because of my previous experience, I believe that the financial services industry is just at the beginning of the digital transformation of financial services with many disruptions and behavior changes to come.
Disruptions and Behavior change,
Digital services have already changed how we bank. The COVID pandemic has accelerated this process of change. But what I find more interesting is not the efficiency gains in time and capacity that we can now see happening, but rather the disruptions and behavior changes that new processes and services will bring in the future.
We can now see that like the photo industry and the need for printed photos disappearing, hard currency or cash, as we now use it will disappear.
But the biggest change in the photo industry may have been the behavior change of how we value photographic images. How many historic family photos will be available 50 years from now? And just as importantly, will anyone miss them if there are none?
The question that I am fixated on at this time, when money as we now know it disappears and is replaced with CBDC or some other form, and when the ease of transactions will only be a thought, and not a process, what will our behavior changes be in the financial services world?
I would love to hear your thoughts on potential behavior changes in our industry?