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Alistair Tosh

Alistair Tosh

12th Apr 2022

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This article originally appeared in the Business Post in March 2022. Download the PDF version.

Participants on the Professional Diploma in Digital Leadership explain how it has given them new perspective on their organisations’ challenges. 

The digital explosion is now upon us, requiring transformational leaders who are willing and able to leverage digital to innovate and drive value.

“Digital is becoming a bigger and bigger part of my role, and I needed a programme to bring me up to latest thinking,” said Colm Scannell, Head of IT, Chadwicks. “Digital is so much more than implementing technology: in lots of ways, that is the easy part. Digital is about changing mindsets and organisational culture. This can be the hardest part.

“As digital brings disruption to business, we need a different kind of leadership strategy. IMI’s Professional Diploma in Digital Leadership draws on the latest thinking and research. We were exposed to a diverse range of industry-leading guest speakers who helped map out what my organisation needs to do to lead our own transformation.”

Scannell says that, in his industry, digital has a wide variety of applications around machine learning and robotics. “We need to prepare for the disruption that is coming in terms of looking at the skillsets we need,
readying our workforce and bringing in new technologies to augment our own work,” he said.

“The programme work and projects help students reflect on their own organisation and highlight areas that need action. It has given me a new perspective that I wouldn’t have had otherwise.”

Recognising the rapidly developing role of digital within the strategic, operational and marketing functions of organisations, the Professional Diploma in Digital Leadership, awarded by UCC, combines the expertise
and insight of top academics and practising digital leaders.

“I am a senior manager in Bank of Ireland,” said Jonathan Kidd, Head of Digital, Operations and Robotics. “Digital transformation is very much part of our strategic objectives. As a leader in that organisation, I felt it would be very valuable to have a broader understanding of the digital landscape. I have significant expertise in particular areas of digital, but the Professional Diploma in Digital Leadership at IMI fleshed out my understanding and filled in some knowledge gaps.”

The Professional Diploma in Digital Leadership draws on the latest research and best practice to give you an integrated view on what it takes to lead. Kidd said that the programme involves a reasonable time
commitment and allows participants to find a good balance between the modules and a busy day job.

“There is a strong emphasis on the leadership element, as well as the skills, capabilities and behaviours required to succeed in the modern digital environment,” he said.

David O’Connell, Technical Support Manager – Emerging Products at VMware, said: “The material was fantastic: it was very wide-ranging. It really underlined how businesses need to have a digital mindset
when they are looking at things like building and scaling.”

O’Connell found the group assignments especially valuable. “We forged good friendships with peers. We plan on maintaining these connections once the programme finishes, professionally and personally,” he said.

For more information on the Professional Diploma in Digital Leadership, click here.

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