Paul Bailo

The Infosys Global Head of Digital Strategy & Innovation – Insurance and Financial Services wins our prize for most massive title, and this 40-minute episode looks at design thinking, UX, and CX at equally massive scale.


Paul talks about several organizations in his interview. Here are links to those items of interest:  


KATIE LUKAS 0:00 So I'm here with Paul Bailo, who is the Global Head of Digital Strategy and Innovation from Infosys Financial Services and Insurance. And that is a very long title. There's a lot of words in there, hopefully I got them all right.

KATIE LUKAS 0:14 I just want to start out and ask you to give a little bit of background about your career. I looked at your LinkedIn profile. It's huge. I mean, it's a monster of a career. I don't know if you can be succinct about that. But maybe the 10,000 foot view would be terrific.

PAUL BAILO 0:28 Yeah, the 10,000 foot view is, I'm a middle class guy from Queens, New York, that's basically a guy who's sort of never left school, right. So educationally, you know, went to St. John's University, got a bachelor's degree, then went back and got a master's degree, and then never left and another master's degree in clinical research. And then - I just love learning - I like the fact of, you know, this process and keeping the edge, you know, sharp, sharp in the sense that there's so much wonderful things going out there in the world. I really just want to understand it, right. PAUL BAILO 1:03 I really thought I was done when the President of the Federal Reserve had nominated me to go to Georgetown for a degree in banking and finance. Um, but I guess I wasn't, and then I said, then, I was always teaching and the dean at Sacred Heart University said, Look, I'd really like to talk to you, you need to really great job for us, you really should be thinking about, you know, going for a PhD. I thought she was crazy, really.

KATIE LUKAS 1:26 That's a lot of a lot of degrees.

PAUL BAILO 1:27 A lot of degrees. I just literally finished two years ago with the PhD - it took me about six and a half years, I don't recommend it to anyone. It was absolutely brutal, just absolutely brutal. I love the program at the International School of Management. I traveled around the world; this faculty was unbelievable. The professors are unbelievable, Dr. Hampton saved me, he was my advisor for two and a half years. But overall, you know, something, it was painful, but it was well worth the journey, right. So just to keep your mind sharp, and other people do other things, right, that means any, you know, you have to keep it sharp, but I like to go through and have that interaction and that structure, you know, with the overall consensus of really seeing the world differently. So to my mind education really gives you a new view. And I try to parlay this into a consensus of looking at things differently.

KATIE LUKAS 2:17 I think that makes a ton of sense. It's also clearly led that angle to your whole career where it has been sort of a career of constant transformation, and constant curiosity and constant investigation just which is really interesting. So how did you come to Infosys? How did you get into this current position you have?

PAUL BAILO 2:36 Yeah, so I believe I was giving a lecture and someone somewhere heard about what I was doing at MasterCard. I was building Apple Pay, and Google while and Samsung heard about me, and I got a call and they said, they'd like to talk to me. And, you know, one thing led to another, and my boss, absolutely fantastic - Scott Sorokin he [made me his] first hire, we're developing this whole new program, this practice and Infosys and, you know, the goal here was, is really Infosys is a 200,000 employee organization that most people have never heard about. We're about $10 billion global. Infosys put in the air on the map for technology. And here is an opportunity to start an entire digital practice from the ground floor. [Wow.] So I said, Wow, this is really cool.

KATIE LUKAS 3:23 That's some good bait!

PAUL BAILO 3:24 Really good bait. Scott was absolutely great. I mean, he did a great job in the positioning it, he's a great leader. I mean, really, overall, just really, you know, fantastic opportunity to come in and start with nothing, and start building it out on basically my background, working at the Federal Reserve, and Citibank and MasterCard, American Express, you know, it just naturally made sense to fit into that financial service insurance background, right, where you could really help these organizations to look at the world very differently. So it was really it was, it was sort of like a no-brainer in my mind - here is this really cool, really exciting to start something in an incubation world and significantly ramp it up in a $10 billion company. Yeah,

KATIE LUKAS 4:03 That's huge. I mean, it really is like that startup in the monster organization - [Yes!] - It's Paul's Skunk Works.

PAUL BAILO 4:11 It's all - it's Scott, it's the team. I mean - my belief is really no one is successful by themselves. It is absolutely impossible that anyone can do anything in this world by themselves. I mean, you have to, you know, everyone says, Yeah, I did this, I did this. It's great. But how about the other 200 people will help you? Right, right. I mean, so. So this is really where it comes into play, to say, "this is really cool." What Infosys is doing and you have to also understand Infosys in their old mindset is really what we would call the "system of record" - this hardcore technology that we're running all these great systems, but the world has significantly changed, right? So we go from this System of Record to this idea of System of Engagement, where it's really about the customer. PAUL BAILO 4:57 Before, CIOs and CTOs would say, okay - of these large companies - would say, "Okay, here's the technology. Okay, Mr. And Mrs. Consumer, here's the book go read about how you play with our company, you know, press the right button and forget about it." Those days are over. Right, you have these things called the millennials, you have people who have great variation or greater opportunity to not use your company, right? So now it's shifted from this idea of a system of record - this hardcore technology - to this idea of system of engagement. What does the customer want? What are those behaviors? How do we marry up to what they want to do? And more importantly, how are they feeling at - during that engagement at each stage of the cycle?

KATIE LUKAS 5:40 Absolutely, right. Absolutely. I mean, I, everything you've just said, really resonates. It is really a sort of a transformation from that, "here's this application" to a real complete systems thinking process, where you have to take the entire ecosystem into consideration. You have to look at the customers all along with way, you have to make sure you're engaging with them all along the way. And you have to make sure that you're doing the research to back up your hypotheses all along the way, or otherwise, the risk of failure becomes catastrophic, especially at your scale.

KATIE LUKAS 6:13 So that actually leads me really nicely, thank you, [laughter] into my next set of questions which is all about design thinking, and innovation. And this is clearly you know, an area of specialty for you. So I'd love for you to talk about doing design thinking at scale, how you've introduced it to the organizations you've been working with, and the kinds of innovation focused processes that you're working with right now.

PAUL BAILO 6:35 Yeah, so a lot of times innovation and design thinking, are like the shiny object in the room, right? So I'm always very careful to see if this is the flavor of the month, or if the organization truly wants this to be part of the culture. So there's really two tangents to this, right - you're hoping that's not just another shiny object in the room. Right? Right. Because that has really a life cycle of very limited substance, right? Yeah. But you could start with that and engage [right] with the hopes that would actually be part of the culture. So it's design thinking, in my mind is really taking a new set of lenses and looking at an old problem, [yes] or getting a you know, looking at a new problem, but let's just define it this way. It's not only the process in design thinking, it's really the organization and the culture that supports that process. It's also the employees and the customers [Yeah] that support that process. And more importantly, it's how these customer's feeling during this entire process. PAUL BAILO 7:38 So when you started the conversation about my education - my masters in clinical social work is really where I go out and try to really understand these customers. Because it's all about the customers. It's, it's what is the customer thinking and feeling and wanting, and they shouldn't have to tell you, right? They shouldn't have to tell you, you should be where the customer is today, tomorrow, and tomorrow plus one, right. So when we go in, and we talk to clients in Connecticut, and globally, it's really trying to understand what they want, what they need, and what they don't understand that they need. [Right.] And to be open and honest with them to say, this is what's happening. Right, right. Right. So I like to use the example of, you know, once again, I'm a street kid from the city of New York, Queens, right? So, so that's who I am. That's what I am. This is where I grew up, right. But it's very interesting. I take the subway, right. Yeah. And I'm in New York. I live in Connecticut in Trumbull, but I take the subway right. And when I do take the subway. It's really interesting. You go to Grand Central, you had to buy a MetroCard. Yep. What's the first thing they asked you? Right? What language? What language! We're in the world of digital. So you can 8 million, you know, 8 million people a day trying to get a MetroCard and the first thing they have to click is what language? [Right] There is no language in the language of design thinking. There's no language in the design of digital, it is instructionless. That question should never happen. Now, you think like, Okay, well, it's the MTA. And you know, maybe they're a little backwards. Look at Amazon, right? If you ever buy something from Amazon, why they keep asking me for my address, city, state, and zip. If you have my zip code, you have my city and state. So you have millions of people a day, just inputting information that's really adding no value. Now, these may be my new things. But this is a poor customer experience. I mean, we're all doing this - waste of time and energy. PAUL BAILO 9:27 I mean, when I was at GE, one of the great things at GE was getting a GE certified black belt, right, right, so, so a blink of the eye that adds no value is waste. So what you really want to try and do in design thinking is remove the waste and enjoy the experience, right? Where you have the heart, mind and soul of the customer. So when we're talking to clients, it's really about what do they want? But what do they need? And what aren't they seeing. So it's really getting them comfortable to understand what design thinking is all about, right? PAUL BAILO 9:59 Seth Lively, one of my co workers at Infosys Consulting, and myself, just did a major event with Travelers, unbelievable organization, great group of leaders. I mean, absolutely fantastic, was a whole day event, specifically on design thinking. But we didn't talk about the process. We talked about the people - we talked about, what did they want? And how are they thinking about this. So there's a time where organizations said, pounding their chest and say, Here I am I wear the red cape we're the company and you're going to do what we want to do. Because we're, you know, the mothership and I, they are all great. Well, those days are over. The power's in the client, the power is with the customer. So we really try to get the minds of the customers be settled to understand what we're trying to do. PAUL BAILO 10:44 And then the big problem is, is to define the problem, right? Because a lot of times design thinking, can be used [in] many areas, one of the critical things is to peel back what the real problem is, define the problem. The clarity of the problem suggests customer acquisition, customer engagement, even just those simple interface for mobile app, but all those little clicks, all those little steps have empathy involved in every step. So we try to serve married up to clarify what the problem is, right? And then we go in deep and think about this and get the right people in a room and challenge the thinking and draw it out, you know, write it all out what's happening at every step, what's going through the mind of the customer? What is the customer feeling and not feeling at that time? Is their loyalty - are they forced to go through this? Do they have a choice? It's like, it's like going to the IRS, we have to do taxes, I don't really have much of a choice. But if you ever go to that site, oh, my goodness! That's so painful.

KATIE LUKAS 11:45 Oh, yes. And when you're in insurance or health care, or finance, there are so many of those processes. Yeah, so a couple of things that you - you mentioned there that I want to touch back on. And the first is this question of organizational change, you know, and I really feel like we're...10 miles, 10,000 miles, 100,000 miles away from what Andersen Consulting used to be, what Deloitte used to be, you know, we're, we're moving into, and those companies are coming with us, you know, in terms of Accenture and Deloitte. But, we're moving into a really different way of thinking about how we design an organization, how we think about our enterprises at the enterprise level, and there's a real variation across industries, in terms of the maturity level, and their willingness to think about that, for sure. But I definitely wanted to highlight that. And the other thing that I wanted to touch on, which I thought was really interesting is some of what you were just talking about, really combined Lean principles, you know, Toyota Production System principles, with, with design thinking, you know, with customer experience, and a lot of times - particularly at enterprise levels - those are perceived to be divergent, right, you're going to spend your money on customer experience, you're going to save your money on Lean, right. And so what you're pointing out there is that those don't have to be contrary to one another. They don't have to be mutually exclusive. You can use customer experience principles, design thinking principles, to, to locate waste, you know, to find opportunities to mitigate risk. And that's, that's a big thing for me lately is, you know, we get asked a lot, why should we pay for research? Why should we buy the services we need to talk to the customers, we can just do the thing. And I'm like, you can do the thing and, and fail. That's what you can do.

PAUL BAILO 13:47 I mean, it's a valid point, right? So, first of all, I think you need the research. I also think you need the data. So we're talking to customers, it's not just here's what the rest of the world is doing. Here's what we're thinking about, right? The fuel to this customer journey, is really looking at the data that solidifies those behaviors. And then the critical piece is really how you want to think about it. Yeah, right. I mean, there is, it's not just about money, right? It's about money, and building that loyalty, and the mental real estate in your customer's mind to always be thinking about you. It's, it has to be simple, easy, understandable, and I want to feel good about this. Right. I keep thinking of Disney World, we have friends who go like every month, right? But it's the same place. But the difference is - there's a different experience every time you go there, right? I mean, my wife and I went there for our honeymoon, we went there two or three times. But it was a different experience every time, right? But you want to make sure that your customer experience is clean, simple, easy, supported with the data, right, right, that that's critical. Or a lot of people say, Wow, this looks really cool and slick, and really nice, shiny object. But if the data doesn't prove out that it works? It makes no sense. PAUL BAILO 14:57 Now, one thing that Infosys is doing, which I'm very proud of is right here in Rhode Island. Yeah, we're having a joint venture with it. Yeah, RISD is like a golden jewel. A diamond in the rough. [Yeah, absolutely.] So we built it. We're building out 25,000 square foot innovation hub with RISD. So it's really mind boggling what we're trying to do here, right? We're you have this unbelievable design thinking workshop. You have emphasis, you have the governor of Rhode Island, you have industry leaders coming in, you have the faculty members, and then you have this unbelievable mindset of students globally coming in where we're working on very complex issues. We're looking at things not of - like, what does it mean to be loyal? Like, what's trust? Right, right? What's the future of insurance really look like? What's the future of branches and banking look like. But this is really a diamond in the rough that we have hooked up with, because of the fact that no one's ever done this before. [Absolutely.] Now, you have Infosys coming in and building this creative treasure chest that organizations could sort of hook into, yeah, um, and have a whole year with our students, and the faculty and the industry leaders to solve these big ugly, you know, tough problems, right?

KATIE LUKAS 16:16 I mean, it's almost a dimension of philosophy - right? - when you get to that level. And you when you start thinking about design, and those big problems, and what the future is going to look like, we - we start to tread into those, into the areas that have historically really been more about philosophy and social work and anthropology and ethnology, there's always been a tremendous amount of overlap, you know, with those latter fields in terms of design thinking and design and understanding the customer but I do feel like it's really starting to crystallize you know, at this point in time. And this effort that you're talking about with RISD is a really good example of exactly that, you know, how this is crystallizing in a corporate world, you, you know, with a major corporation behind it. And that's a little bit new. I mean, there's pockets of it, you know, in terms of business history, but it really is a new thing that you guys are doing. And so, having talked about the, the Rhode Island effort, I would love to hear if you have any thoughts about the technology and innovation hub that's going to come into Hartford, because that's also really exciting for us.

PAUL BAILO 17:23 Yeah, I mean, you know, Hartford is sort of the mecca of insurance, right? [Yep.] So insurance companies traditionally, you know, very regulated, right, and the doors have sort of been open but when you look at a regulated industry, what, what is your differentiating factor your competitive advantage, because so insurance is, insurance is, insurance, so you could go so far in terms of the price and the level of risk in there, but it's really going to be your customer experience. Do you understand me? [Yep] Do you understand my needs? Right? And how hard are you going to make it? [Yeah] Or how easy are going to make it for me to come in? Yeah, right. And once again, it's every thing we were talking about, how do I feel about Travelers? Do I feel comfortable? Do they love me? Do they care about me? Am I doing all the work - right? Or are you coming to me when I really need it in those moments, that I really need you. Are you giving me an offer at the right time, at the right price, with the right channel and the right graphic at that moment, where I said, Thank you. That's what I really need. I mean, it doesn't make any sense for you to send me information on car insurance - if I don't need car insurance, if I don't even have a car. I mean, that doesn't make any sense. But if you know, the next three months, I'm looking to get my first car and you could look at the data and you make it really easy for me, I'm gonna love you, right. So we have to take in this concrete data, analytic business insight component with this idea of this monolithic type of organization, and meet and exceed the customers expectation so that when they're when they need you, not when you want when you're ready to accept them, right.

KATIE LUKAS 19:03 So I think that that speaks exactly to where we are, and where, you know, I personally perceived the insurance industry to be is, you know, sort of teetering on this precipice of how, how close to an individual do we want to get, right, you know, you start out with insurance at the broadest possible level, you can buy this type of insurance, you know, there's three different types. And that's it. And now we're getting much closer to this idea of personalized insurance and insurance for me at the right time in my life, for exactly what I need, you know, and I think we're seeing some - we're seeing startups, right, we're seeing lots of startups in the space, who have plenty of good ideas and some of them are missing that background in the monolith - right? - in the red tape and the regulations law and compliance and you know, all of the baggage that comes with insurance and then on the flip side of that we see the ins- the major insurance companies who have all the baggage and are not entirely sure how close to get to that individual, that personalized level so you know, I'd love to hear your perspective on that like how how far do you push it in terms your business?

PAUL BAILO 20:14 So we go as far as the customer wants us to go. And there is a culture within the organization as a culture that you have within your client base [yeah] so I would - I like to go as close as I can to the customer without making them feel Big Brother or somebody looking over their shoulder - [creepy] - yeah but if you have that trusting, loving relationship with that organization and you're - you're not just looking to make revenue, you're looking to really say the customer is - we got to care for this customer, we got to take care of the customer, we want to do what's right for the customer [right], which Travelers and a lot of other your insurance carriers are putting that focus on? I think customers feel comfortable with it, right? PAUL BAILO 20:57 I mean, you could get the point where - so let's say hypothetically you play the violin, right? Okay. And you have a million dollar violin and you have an insurance policy on it. But you now have to go to Carnegie Hall to play tonight, but it's raining out and you're going to take the subway, you know, Metro North from Connecticut - and that increases your liability. So you may say at that moment, I really need more insurance. So if you get close enough to the customer, we could know what your - your schedule playing is at Carnegie Hall marrying up with the weather data and marrying it up with your website. Marrying up with your current policy - that you can get a quick email say would you like to increase your insurance for your multimillion dollar violin tonight? Yes or no, click. So it's real time right time insurance at that moment.

KATIE LUKAS 21:49 And you almost think of like a volume dial? Right. [Exactly.] Like, let's turn it up for this for this night. Yes. You know, I know I'm going to be taking a road trip. Let's turn it up, sir. Absolutely. Right.

PAUL BAILO 22:01 Yeah. Or you have a young driver who just got his or her license, and they're going out first time at night? Maybe - maybe at that moment. Yeah, your point, you dial it up in one click. Now. It shouldn't be - fill out all the paperwork, right. It shouldn't be. Look at this time, a moment, for the next five hours, the risk is greater, right, let's increase it and then after that period of time, the risk mitigates - let's lower it

KATIE LUKAS 22:25 And I think insurance, you know, does have a unique opportunity - and finance - too, you know, in terms of that trust level, it's, it's much harder to say, Okay, I'm ready to trust Walmart, with all of my personal Well, it's like, Yeah, all of it. Do I really want Walmart to know my schedule.

PAUL BAILO 22:41 Well, I don't know, some people would!

KATIE LUKAS 22:43 Some people! All right maybe Walmart is not the best example. But you know, there are a lot of like, retail brands or more marketing-heavy brands. Yeah, it's much harder to find the exact boundary of that creepy line. Right? Like the target example. Yeah. With the pregnant person who got the postcard. Right.

PAUL BAILO 23:01 The mother, father was flipping out. [Right, exactly.] Hold on, we apologize. Yeah, we know...

KATIE LUKAS 23:05 So that's - that line can be hard to find, that line in the sand. But with insurance. And with finance, there's already a bedrock of trust, you know, there has to be, you know, I am - I'm coming to my insurance company with the idea that when the worst possible thing happens, you are going to be there for me. With my bank, there's a whole similar model. So, you know, I do think that - that foundation of trust exists that can be built upon to a much greater extent than is really happening yet. And so much of it is about the customer experience, you know, there's, there's just so much energy and time and human capital put into the forms. The processing of the forms, the processing of the forms, and the endless forms and the endless phone calls, and it still has, it has a long way to go, you know, before I would call that an ideal customer experience There's, there's certainly a lot of fertile ground there.

KATIE LUKAS 24:00 I'm going to move into a little bit of talking about how you feel about Connecticut, how you perceive Connecticut, you know, you've talked about all of your international travel, the fact that you're, you know, out on the road a ton of the time, you're in New York a ton of the time, you live in Connecticut, you're working with insurance companies. So I'd like to hear you know, what, what you perceive as happening in Connecticut, in - in Hartford right now, and how it may be compares favorably - or not - to the rest of the country and the rest of the world. You have any thoughts on that?

PAUL BAILO 24:31 Yeah, so I mean Harford for specifically. I mean, how many people have been there? I mean, if you were there 10 years ago, you're like, Okay, there's a lot of work that has to be done here. Right? If you go there now. I mean, unbelievable. We have UConn there. You have a Front Street, you have the Coliseum even have the minor league baseball team. I mean, you know, personally, I was looking for a new suit. It's very hard to find a custom suit maker. Yeah. But you know what? Hartford has an unbelievable suit maker. I bet! Right. So it's sorta like, once again, it's almost like RISD, it's just this golden jewel that had to be shined up a little bit, but there's like a Renaissance and you have, I mean, first of all, you have unbelievable education. Right. In Connecticut. You have, you know, you have Yale, you have Sacred Heart, you have Quinnipiac, you have UConn you have - it goes on and on and on and on. Right, Fairfield [University]. I mean, So you have this not Connecticut-only base, but this international talent pool that you could pull on, right? Second, you have some unbelievable companies in Hartford? [Yeah, we do!] Right? [We sure do.] So when you have this unbelievable talent pool with these unbelievable, you know, organizations and you have this this renaissance of customer experience. I mean, this is the fuel you need to sort of ratchet up a notch in Hartford. PAUL BAILO 25:48 Now, what you want to make sure, though, is there's a lot of change that has to go on, right. There's still a lot that has to happen, right? I mean, not everyone says - I have a son who goes to University of Michigan. He's not saying yeah I want to come back and go to Hartford. Right. He's not saying that. So we also have to look at keeping these young kids here. [Yes.] Right. Everyone wants to live in New York. New Jersey. Washington. Philadelphia. Boston. [Yep.] Right? Somewhere in there as Hartford - right. But we have to make it more advantageous for the - these young kids to come in. Right? It's not that easy right now. Connecticut's expensive, right. It's not it's not you know low cost, right. Right. So you have to play this game of where can you get someone, highly talented in an insurance company, pay them well and hopefully keep them here - but also build the social component that young millennials want and build you know, this housing structure that's affordable, right? where someone you know, as they decide to get married, or not get married, or have the living capabilities, have a good life and have those external pieces, right. We also have to make sure we have enough stimulation. I mean, you know, I live in Connecticut and Trumbull, it's a great place to raise kids. But you know, My son, when he comes home, he wants to go back to University of Michigan, he loves it there - there is a lot of stimulation, there's a lot to see. I mean, so I think the good part is there's a lot of great ingredients in Hartford. Right, right. I mean, really, I mean, this is - this is just a matter of time before this huge boom happens. We still have to keep pushing, right. Still have to keep pushing, we also have to make sure our infrastructure is working correctly, right? Yeah, I mean, I take Metro North, it's packed - packed! We need better trains, we need more trains, we need to facilitate that. We need lower cost transportation. I mean, it's expensive. Yeah. So we bring all these young people together with these great companies, you bring in this idea of customer at the core. Wow, this is going to be an unbelievable story. In the next five to 10 years.

KATIE LUKAS 27:46 Yeah, I'm right there with you. You know, I think that the - we're at the very beginning of this, you know, and that that feels like a little bit daunting. There's, there's still this much left to do. But even in infrastructure, you have the Hartford Rail now, but there's so much more to do so much, so much more. You know, I mean, the good thing is that it's turning into a tremendous success story. So the likelihood is that there will be more -

PAUL BAILO 28:08 Get in now! Yeah, start buying the real estate in Hartford. Right. I mean, a renaissance is happening. I mean, it's, it's a matter of time.

KATIE LUKAS 28:15 I would agree completely. So just a couple last questions. I would love to hear - and I think we touched on this a little bit, or you touched on this a little bit - but I'd love to hear what you perceive as coming, you know, what's next for us in customer experience? What's next, either within design thinking, or what follows design thinking, you know, what, what's around the corner, and in 5 - 10 years, what are we going to be doing and talking about?

PAUL BAILO 28:41 Yeah, my personal view is the mitigation of lot of decisions that don't add any value that someone else can really do for me. Right, right. I mean, it seems right now that the customer is the stimuli to do something, right, if it's, I need extra insurance, I need to increase my, my home insurance, all of that stuff will be taken off my plate. Okay, okay, right, so, so I have a home insurance with Amica. Every year, I call them and say, let's review this. [Right] Now, I'm seeing that they're coming to me. [Okay, yeah] Okay, it looks like your home value went up, hey, we want to increase your life insurance, we want to increase your home insurance. So - so what I'm saying is, is a lot of the time we spend mental real estate on thinking about things that don't really add any value, it's going to be that the company is going to come to you and say, but, you know, we reviewed ABCD of your insurance policy. Here's a recommendation, press the button if you agree, right, right. So there's not a lot of value in me making a chocolate cake. I just want to eat the chocolate cake. Yes. Okay. Right. All that to get me to the chocolate cake. If you want to teach me how to, you know, bake the cake. And, you know, mix the dough and the batter and all that - it's a waste. Yeah. Just get me to the chocolate cake. Right. So. So what I'm seeing is with artificial intelligence, and getting closer to my mindset, and using the data to understand who Paul Bailo is, and what his needs are today, tomorrow, tomorrow, tomorrow, plus one, right? With organizations, I'll be happy if they came to me to make a recommendation. Yeah. And let me just press a button, right? I don't want to be thinking about this. It's not adding much value. Right, right. So. So there's only 24 hours in the day, there's some really cool stuff that I want to be thinking about. But if you really think about some of the stuff you have to think about, just to get through the day, yeah, it adds no value. So Customer service is really where it's going to, in my view, is going to be this - this transfer of brain knowledge, where companies will do a lot more of the thinking for me, and I'm just going to be reacting to it.

KATIE LUKAS 30:44 So this is - that was really interesting what you just said, First, I want to thank you, because Amica is one of our clients at Cronin and we love them very much. But apart from that, what - I mean, you're almost expressing the idea of using data to model an individual customer and use the corporate systems to sort of offload some of the mental labor from that customer. And that's a really intriguing, possibly slightly creepy, but really intriguing idea, you know, in terms of using AI and using machine learning in these really focused ways, you know, and I definitely think that there's a ton of future there and how that's going to play out over the next, you know, 10 years of our careers is going to be pretty interesting.

PAUL BAILO 31:30 Yeah, I think it's gonna be on autopilot. I think I have to realize we spend a lot of time thinking about things that don't add any value. Right, right. I know we have a oil guy come, and he just comes when he comes and he knows when to fill up the tank. I don't have to call him. So why can't the insurance company tell me when I need more insurance? I trust you. And I think you have my best interest. Tell me what I need. Yeah, don't let me have to be thinking about this. Why? I mean, it's - I'm not the expert in insurance. [Yeah] I mean, you know, the insurance company says, Okay, here Paul, here is what you have. This is the you, you know, you have someone who's not driving... like, it's simple, like, my son now goes off to college, right? My insurance should go lower. I shouldn't have to call. Like, why isn't the insurance company calling and say, Hey, we realize your son just graduated high school? Is he going off to college? Yes or no? Hey, by the way, we should reduce your insurance, because there's less risk? PAUL BAILO 32:17 Yeah, so a lot of that thinking - I see in the next five to 10 years going off people's plates. Yeah. And that, that is where I think what we could really be doing is using an extra mental real estate and mental capacity to think about things that really help us in the world, right? Think about things that you really want to be thinking about, that could help your family or your friends, or your children. Or your wife. Or, or your church. Right, right. Because you could use all this time, better ways. Right? Right. PAUL BAILO 32:44 The company should really be, you know, having the customers doing less of the thinking and more of the - like, I think of it as like McDonald's, right? We want - 1234 you go in, you pick a number. I don't have to think anymore. Like, I just want McDonald's breakfast or lunch or - pick a number. Right, right. But pick a number. Good. That's what - that's what I think is gonna happen. Yeah.

KATIE LUKAS 33:04 Hmm. That's really interesting. And so the last question that I have is something I'm asking of all the guests on the podcast, and there's some richness of variety in the answers. So this is why I like this one. But I'd love to hear what advice you would give to an organization of any size, you know, a small business or, you know, company on the scale of Infosys, which is the whole other end of the world. You know, what, what advice would you give them if they're seeking to mature their customer experience, if they're seeking to improve their capabilities in this area?

PAUL BAILO 33:38 Yeah, I would first just stop. And think. [Yeah] Right. Just stop and think because, because, once again, we started the conversation with this idea of shiny object, right, to stop and think and see what's really working for you, and what's really not. And really understand that design thinking, organizational change, digital transformation - are really hard. Yeah. And you really don't have that much of a choice. So you're either going to do it today, where you're going to do tomorrow, or you won't be around. It's that simple, right? There is this, this, this this runaway train that's coming, right, so you're either going to be on it, or off it, or you're going get hit by it.

KATIE LUKAS 34:11 That's a really good metaphor.

PAUL BAILO 34:14 So you really have to start thinking about is there enough pain in your system to really make this work. So I think organizations really change when there's significant pain. If you know, I say, if you're fat, dumb and happy, right? You're not really going to change, there's not enough pain in the system in order to move the needle, right, right, you're wasting my time, and you're wasting your time. Because you're really not going to make a change. However, if you see your revenues dropping, or if you see your customer base dying off, or you don't see young people coming into the system, and through new acquisition, you're going to say, okay, something's not working, right? We've been around 200 years, but something's not working. We're a little scared, right? I'm happy you're scared. Because - in a good way - because now you get to really use that brain power in the organization, say "we have a problem, we need to fix it." And you're sort of saying it's an emergency. And as a call to action, that call to action will drive a cultural shift in that organization. Right? That's when you really going to see major transformation, that's where you're going to say is, we were like A for 200 years. This is the new version, right? This is the new - digital version of the insurance company. This is a new bank, right? This is how it's going to look, this is how we're going to function. PAUL BAILO 35:26 It scares a lot of people. [Yeah, sure does] Change is very, very hard. But in my world, there are really only two constants in the world. So we have to get used to this, right. This way I teach all my students at Columbia - is there's really only two constants in the world, right? One is constant change, right? You are not the same person you were a few minutes ago, an hour ago, a day ago. We are constantly changing. And, two, the search for unconditional love. The ability to be in a group, to be in a team, to be in an organization, to be in a family, to be with friends - to be accepted. Those are the only two constants. So if you could take these two concepts and join them up. Wow, that's a powerful solution. Yes, we're going to be scared, yes, we're going to have to change this company. But we're all going to do it together as a team. Look, everything I'm saying - it's been done before. Sure, right. You just have to get the mindset that you're eligible and capable. And you want to do it. You have to have pain in the system. PAUL BAILO 36:25 So - so my take is, is just stop. Think. Make sure that you really want to go through this. Because when you're off and that train, train, leaves the station, you can't stop it. You have to be ready for what's coming. And you may not know what's coming. And the unknown scares people. That's where Infosys comes in. We've seen this, we walk hand in hand in the dark with our clients, we make sure if they fall we pick them up. Right? We're there for them. Their success is our success. It's the right thing to do. I mean, no one wants to see a 200 year old company, you know, fail. Right, right. I mean, look, no one wakes up in the morning says, I want to fail today. So, you know, we've been through this, we know what the storyline looks like. Yeah. But you have to have the wherewithal, right, you have to have the passion and the purpose and the grit to make this happen. If you don't have the, the passion and the purpose and the grit , I wouldn't do it. Right. Right. I would suggest don't do it. Because you really just going to be wasting a lot of time and money. Yeah, right. That's not going to help anyone.

KATIE LUKAS 37:24 Yeah. Everything you just said right now, I think was almost profound. I love this idea of, you know, sort of looking at the effort from a real human and humanist perspective of, you know, looking at the human being, you know, and their search for love and acceptance and their need for change. And then their fear of change and all of that. And I - I do think I wholeheartedly agree with you that that commitment and that willingness to be introspective, you know, and - about yourself, about your organization, about your team, the willingness to sort of let go of what you have always done, you know, because, obviously, you know, maybe it always worked, but all of a sudden, it's not anymore, you know, and I yeah, I think everything that you just said is, is fantastic advice. I love that advice. Just to stop and think and look around and - and commit. Because, if you're not going to commit, it's not going to work.

PAUL BAILO 38:19 It's not going to work, right? If you believe my philosophy - is always that emotion drives behavior. Yeah. Right. So, so emotion will drive the behavior. So if you're not emotionally connected to this - it's not going to happen. Right, right. I mean organization's culture, transformation, have to do with individuals. Yes, right. Even if the CEO comes in and says, we're going to do this. He has their hearts, minds and souls, right? Because if not, it's just going to flame out very quickly. Right, right. And they don't want people just coming in and go sitting at their desks and going to work and doing a thing, getting a paycheck. Those days are over, right? I mean, there. I mean, those aren't the people you want, right? Their heart, minds, and souls say, wow, this is a great organization have been around a very long time. What's working today? Hmm. Doesn't seem to be working. We really gotta move forward. Yeah, and you have this great talent pool in Connecticut, you have this great idea about digital thinking, customer experience. It's all the ingredients for your success are laid out, right. It's just a matter - are you committed? Yeah, absolutely. You have to have the passion. Do you have the purpose of the grit to do this? Yeah, absolutely.

KATIE LUKAS 39:23 So this was fantastic. Yeah, I think this was just a remarkable conversation. I'm so glad that you were able to come.

PAUL BAILO 39:30 Thanks for having me. This is good!

KATIE LUKAS 39:32 Yeah, it's a lot of fun.

KATIE LUKAS 39:32 When we present the podcast, we will include links to some of the resources that you mentioned, and of course, to Infosys and to RISD and to Hartford and, you know, all of those robust efforts that are going on. So again, thank you so much. This has been fantastic.

PAUL BAILO 39:49 Yeah, thank you very much. It's been great.

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