Time in the Market
               Not Timing the Market

THE ‘NEW’ CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER

Within Our Commodity Trading Community lurks a growing consensus that our prevailing operating models and ETRM systems could vastly benefit from the broader integration of blockchain applications. 

Yet, the challenge lies not in recognizing this potential but in bridging the knowledge gap. Too often, we find that key stakeholders, especially within the C-Suite, have a limited understanding of the transformative power of web3. This, combined with the intricacies of reconfiguring current models and processes, serves as a barrier to progression.

The value of automation in enhancing efficiency and accuracy is undeniable. However, it’s a truth often met with apprehension. Both from leadership who might be set in their ways, and from the workforce, particularly post-transaction.

It’s crucial for leaders to showcase that automation doesn’t replace human expertise but complements it. Automation provides data-driven outputs, but it’s our human intuition and expertise that assess, refine, and enhance these outputs. This drive, this inspiration, must emanate from the zenith. It shouldn’t be a responsibility passed down the ranks. Instead, every individual within the C-Suite should possess a foundational understanding of what the future can and ought to be.

As the wave of AI permeates trading floors, there’s an underlying fear: “Will our jobs become redundant?” This concern is most vocal among those who emphasize their roles’ significance in the grand mechanism of the supply chain. However, this fear is largely unfounded. Now, more than ever, we need those bright minds to guide us towards a future where data flows seamlessly—from execution to middle office management, risk management, transaction financing, and operations. The crux of the issue? It’s about evolving mindsets and fostering top-down comprehension.

Leaders stand at the helm of this transformative journey. Their role isn’t just to navigate but to inspire, equip, and guide every member of their team. It begins with empowering the workforce with the tools they need to rise to this new challenge. Firstly, equip them with the skills required to craft automation programs. This fosters a synergetic partnership between domain experts, statisticians, data scientists, and IT mavens.

Secondly, it’s imperative to reshape the cultural ethos around upskilling. Create an environment where curiosity thrives—an environment where questions become the bridge to understanding new systems and programs. 

Lastly, collaboration is key. By uniting teams, companies, and even industries, we can pool our experiences, insights, and case studies to charter this new terrain collectively.

Us within the C suite need not only solely rely on internal upskilling, it might be time to consider introducing an expert into our leadership. Someone who not only understands our operating models, the systems, and the inter-departmental flow of data but also sees the broader picture through the lens of web3 and blockchain expertise. This person should bring change management experience to the table and possess the finesse to liaise seamlessly with both the workforce that drives the process and their C-Suite counterparts. By making such a strategic addition to our leadership, we can truly position ourselves at the forefront of the industry’s digital transformation.

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