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Meet The Strategic Transformational Executive Who Is Making A Global Impact Charisma Glassman is a prominent figure in the realm of strategic leadership and technological innovation.

By Vaibhav Sethi

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As an Indian-American hailing from New York, Glassman has established herself as a beacon of transformational leadership within Fortune 500 companies.

Charisma Glassman is a prominent figure in the realm of strategic leadership and technological innovation. As an Indian-American hailing from New York, Glassman has established herself as a beacon of transformational leadership within Fortune 500 companies, leaving a lasting impact on the global business landscape. Currently, she serves as the Portfolio Head of Consumer Products, Luxury, and Apparel at a top tier global management consulting firm in the US, where she leads a team known for developing innovative strategies that redefine industry standards.

With over two decades of experience, Glassman has consistently propelled leading brands and banks towards unprecedented growth and success through her visionary approach to leveraging technology. In this article, she shares invaluable insights from her extensive experience, focusing on how to navigate the ever-evolving landscape of technology-driven value creation. Through her experience as a trusted C-Suite and board advisor, readers will learn four essential areas on how to effectively drive technological change to maximize value creation in corporations in any industry.

Navigating the Future: Strategic Pathways for Technology-Driven Value Creation

In today's dynamic business landscape, technology plays a pivotal role in driving growth and fostering innovation across diverse industries and corporations. However, many organizations, particularly those outside the high-tech sector, often perceive technology as a cost center rather than a revenue driver. To fully capitalize on the value of a corporate technology infrastructure, it is imperative to adopt a more comprehensive and strategic perspective. This article explores four key areas for transforming a corporation's technology infrastructure, encompassing: 1) shifting from a cost center to a revenue center mindset, 2) embracing customer-centric technology transformation, 3) driving technology change through effective leadership, and 4) recognizing the significance of technology leaders on corporate boards. Let us start by delving into the first area of customer-centric technology transformation.

Reimagining Technology Departments: From Cost Centers to Strategic Revenue Drivers

The first area of consideration pertains to the high-level perspective held by leadership. Transitioning technology departments from being cost centers to revenue centers represents a strategic imperative for modern corporations. It necessitates a fundamental shift in perspective, whereby technology is not merely viewed as a support function, but rather as a core component of the business model capable of driving growth, fostering innovation, and establishing a competitive advantage. By cultivating a culture of entrepreneurship and innovation within technology departments, organizations can unlock their full potential, harnessing their technological expertise as a significant source of revenue and market differentiation. This transformation not only enhances the value proposition of the technology department but also redefines its role as an integral player in the long-term success of the company.

Achieving this transformation begins with leadership articulating a clear strategic vision where technology is recognized as a core driver of business growth and innovation, rather than a mere support function. This vision should align with the overall corporate strategy and emphasize the pivotal role of technology in achieving business objectives. Additionally, fostering a culture of entrepreneurship and innovation within technology departments encourages risk-taking, experimentation, and collaboration, empowering employees to explore new ideas and drive continuous improvements. This is further achieved by ensuring tight alignment between technology initiatives and business goals, developing relevant performance and revenue metrics, investing in skill development, forging strategic partnerships, and implementing effective change management practices are also critical components in realizing the shift from cost centers to revenue centers.

Adopting a Customer-Centric Technology Perspective

The second core area for technology transformation is adopting a customer-centric perspective for technology. In today's competitive marketplace, the imperative for aligning technology transformations with customer needs is paramount for corporate growth and sustainability. This strategic alignment focuses on directly addressing customer demands, enhancing satisfaction, and ensuring companies remain relevant and differentiated in a crowded market. By leveraging customer feedback, corporations can foster a culture of innovation and operational efficiency, identifying and prioritizing projects that maximize ROI and adapt quickly to market changes. This customer-centric approach not only increases revenue through relevant offerings but also strengthens brand loyalty and mitigates investment risks, ensuring long-term success.

The evolving digital economy challenges the traditional view that technology departments should shift towards recognizing their potential as key drivers of business growth and innovation. By developing new digital products and services for internal and external customers, technology departments can unlock new revenue streams and align with consumer demands. The monetization of data and insights further transforms technology into a strategic asset, enabling companies to inform business strategy and capitalize on market trends.

Efficiently optimizing operations and embracing the concept of technology as a service allows for the reallocation of resources to support innovation and new business ventures. This approach, coupled with strategic investments in emerging technologies, positions companies to lead in new markets, ensuring they remain adaptable and competitive. Through these transformative perspectives, corporations can leverage technology not only as a tool for operational efficiency but as a cornerstone of their growth and innovation agenda, securing their place in the fast-paced digital landscape.

Executive Leadership: A Keystone of Technology Transformation

The third area is securing perpetual executive leadership and sponsorship for technology transformations. Continuous executive sponsorship is pivotal in steering technology transformations within organizations, ensuring these initiatives align with strategic goals and secure the necessary resources. This high-level leadership is crucial for integrating technological advancements with business objectives, effectively prioritizing projects within the company's agenda. Beyond strategic and logistical support from the technology departments, executive involvement is key to driving cultural change, setting a tone that values adaptation and innovation. Their visible and continuous backing fosters an environment ready for new technologies, guiding the organization through change with a unified approach. Thus, executive sponsorship stands as a fundamental pillar in successfully navigating the complexities of technology transformation, marking its critical role in maintaining competitive edge in the business landscape.

The Importances of Technology Expertise on Corporate Boards

The final area for driving technology based value generation is incorporating individuals with profound technology expertise into corporate boards. This is essential for navigating the rapidly evolving business landscape. These professionals offer strategic insights into technological trends and innovations, enabling companies to anticipate and adapt to shifts that could significantly impact their strategic direction, ensuring sustained competitiveness and innovation. Their expertise is invaluable in guiding digital transformations, a critical aspect for organizations seeking to align their digital strategies with overarching objectives and achieve effective implementations. Moreover, technology-savvy board members play a crucial role in overseeing technology investments, evaluating potential impacts and returns on investment to drive growth, efficiency, and competitive advantage.

Furthermore, leveraging technology to enhance customer experiences is paramount in today's digital-first world. Board members with a deep understanding of technology can advocate and guide the adoption of customer-centric technologies that improve service delivery, engagement, and satisfaction, fostering a culture of innovation within the company. They encourage exploration of new technologies, methodologies, and business models, identifying opportunities that align with strategic goals. Additionally, by serving as a bridge between technical teams and other board members, these individuals ensure that technology strategies are clearly communicated and understood, translating complex technical concepts into strategic business decisions. This alignment between technology initiatives and business objectives is critical for fostering innovation, achieving competitive differentiation, and driving the company's overall success.


Glassman suggests that shifting this mindset requires effort especially when it comes to culture and people transformation. It begins with changing the perspective from technology being a cost center to becoming strategic revenue drivers. Next, it entails the technology department adopting a customer-centric perspective guided by metrics and objectives linked to customer and revenue outcomes. Subsequently, it demands visionary leadership support to drive continuous technological change and improvements that boost revenues. Lastly, continuous technology expertise on corporate boards is essential for navigating change and sustaining competitiveness. Embracing these perspectives enables corporations to optimize operations, drive growth, and ensure long-term success in the dynamic business landscape.

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