This leadership spotlight features experienced digital professional, Ewan Qualters!
Ewan's lengthy experience as a senior leader in digital has seen him work with various businesses around the UK. Currently, Ewan leads the digital strategy at Ann Summers as their Digital & 3rd Party Director.
His career background has also seen him work with names such as FitFlop, East Ltd, and French Connection.
In our exclusive sit-down with Ewan, he discusses his career journey to date, starting in an agency, his day-to-day as a Digital Director, successfully launching a large-scale digital transformation project, why the possibilities of AI are "endless" and his passion for property renovation!
Read our Q&A with Ewan below.
Why did you join the Digital Leaders Club?
I joined the Digital Leaders Club to connect with fellow professionals in the field and stay updated on the latest trends and innovations in digital technology. It provides a valuable platform for networking, sharing knowledge, and collaborating with like-minded people who are passionate about driving digital transformation.
What's your career journey been like to date?
My career has been focused on digital from the start. I began by obtaining a degree in Fashion Promotion & Design and then ventured into various roles within the digital industry. I started in Digital B&M, then honing my technical skills at an agency, before gradually moving into roles with more strategic and managerial responsibilities. Over the years, I gained experience in digital marketing, user experience design, and digital strategy, which eventually led me to my current position as a Digital & 3rd Party Director.
Tell us about your current position.
My role is to oversee and lead the digital strategy and operations within an organization. I work closely with cross-functional teams, including marketing, IT, design & B&M to ensure that our digital initiatives align with business objectives and deliver a seamless user experience. I am responsible for identifying opportunities for innovation, driving digital transformation initiatives, and leveraging emerging technologies to gain a competitive edge in the market.
What do you love about working in digital?
One of the things I love about working in digital is the ever-evolving nature of the industry. Digital technology constantly presents new opportunities and challenges, being in this dynamic field allows me to continuously learn and grow. I enjoy the fast-paced environment, the ability to leverage data and analytics to drive decision-making, and the opportunity to make a meaningful impact by creating innovative digital experiences for users.
Have you had any interesting moments in your career so far?
I have been fortunate to experience several interesting moments. One memorable one was when my team successfully launched a large-scale digital transformation project that significantly enhanced the organization's online presence and customer engagement. Another memorable experience was leading a cross-functional team in developing the web platform to grow it’s features and present a more user-friendly design.
Have you had any challenges in your career to date, and how did you overcome them?
Certainly, one significant challenge was managing stakeholder expectations during a complex digital transformation project. It required effective communication, stakeholder engagement, and managing competing priorities. To overcome this challenge, I adopted a transparent and collaborative approach, establishing open lines of communication with stakeholders, setting clear expectations, and providing regular progress updates. By fostering a collaborative environment and addressing concerns proactively, we were able to navigate the challenges successfully.
Tell us about your best success story.
Aside from coming out of Covid in one piece! One of my most gratifying success stories was leading a digital marketing campaign that resulted in a substantial increase in online sales and brand awareness for the company. Leveraging data-driven insights, optimizing digital advertising channels, and implementing personalized customer experiences, we achieved great results. The campaign not only exceeded revenue targets but also strengthened customer loyalty.
What's it been like transitioning to a hybrid setup over the past two years?
Over the past two years it has been both challenging and rewarding. Adapting to new ways of collaborating and managing teams, with a combination of in-person and remote work. While there were initial challenges in establishing communication channels and maintaining team moral, we embraced digital collaboration tools, refined our workflows, and implemented clear guidelines to ensure seamless collaboration regardless of physical location. The hybrid setup has provided flexibility and enabled us to tap into a wider talent pool while still fostering a sense of team.
What are your hobbies and interests outside of work?
Outside of work, I spend quite a lot of time renovating my home, and the list of things to do seems to be never-ending! I am also an avid gym goer - I spin almost every evening as I find it helps me to switch off from the day job! Aside from that, having a 3-year-old also keeps me very occupied as well!
What’s the coolest trend you’re excited about?
It’s got to be AI. The possibilities are endless and I am excited to see businesses and individuals start to explore the tech and change the direction of the industry.
What’s your plan for the future?
I plan to continue driving digital innovation and transformation within my organization. I aim to stay at the forefront of emerging technologies and industry trends, leveraging them to create exceptional digital experiences for our customers and drive business growth.
I also plan to further develop my leadership skills and expand my knowledge in areas such as artificial intelligence, data analytics, and cybersecurity to effectively navigate the evolving digital landscape.
What would you be doing (for a career) if you weren’t doing this?
If I wasn’t in the Digital space, I would probably be doing something in the property arena. Over the years I have renovated a number of properties and enjoy the process of design & change. Seeing the end result is certainly rewarding!
Connect with Ewan on LinkedIn