Stephen Zakur
Divisional CIO | Digital Transformation Leader | Turnaround Specialist


Stephen ZakurI am a global, digital technology executive with a proven, fifteen-year record of moving organizations to leadership positions by building deep partnerships with business teams, excelling at organizational development, and deploying digital technologies and business models.

My most recent experience is moving legacy businesses into the digital world. The key to building a successful digital business is to focus on the end-to-end business model. The end-to-end business model must provide customers with the ability to engage with the enterprise across channels, across products, and across platforms. Knowing which digital practices and technologies to enable is critical to accelerating digital growth.

Making progress in enabling a digital business model requires a distinct focus. First, the organization’s focus need to be honed via brutal prioritization of investment opportunities. Next, winning business models need to be identified through an iterative process of production prototyping. Finally, the winner needs to be supported with the rapid introduction of an enabling technology platform. Speed is gained by using agile methods both on the tech side as well as the business side. I have the technical, financial, and people skills to deliver these valuable outcomes, fast.

As a passionate builder of teams, I have acquired and developed top talent managing teams of 1,000+ people. I am equally energized by rolling up my sleeves and leading a product team of 25 people. It’s all about talent, build and value delivery. I am also an established financial leader having managed budgets as large as $300M and delivered margin enhancement while improving performance.

I am seeking opportunities to help organizations, old and new, build digital platforms to accelerate their growth.

If you have a challenge that fits my profile, let’s talk about how I can help you shape and deliver a winning strategy. Shoot me an email.

Expertise

Digital. Digital. Digital. Everything these days is digital. For business, the challenge is cutting through the buzzword bingo to get to something that makes sense for your business context. In order to truly be digital, you have to connect your end-to-end business model from the customer want through to value delivery. The key is to think big, but start small, and move fast. I have worked with legacy businesses to rapidly deliver value where it matters most.
Agile isn’t just for software development any more. Marketing teams, customer service squads, and contract managers can benefit from using the concepts of agile to improve responsiveness, increase quality, and reduce overhead. I’m experienced with a variety of agile methodologies including Scrum and SAFe, though I think the tribe/squad model utilized by Spotify is most broadly applicable.
Whether it’s taking a young organization and giving them the skills and structure necessary to continue growth or taking a troubled legacy organization and getting it back on the right track, I am energized by the challenge of building great teams and transforming them so they can deliver value to customers and returns for owners.
At the end of the day, you deliver value by building. While many of the organizations I’ve led are large, small teams (+/-25 people) are where value gets delivered and where I focus much of my time. As a leader I have to create a structure that makes this magic happen and then only work closely with those teams who are at the tip of the spear from a value creation perspective.
I don’t play the Ukulele. That’s humor (such as it is). If you require a Ukulele player (or a comedian) I’m probably not your guy.

Ukulele

Digital
Agile
Business Turnaround
Product Management
Ukulele