Tech author Erik Qualman dissects global digital transformation, disruptors

By Ram Superable Agustin

Erik Qualman — author of bestsellers such as Digital Leader and What Happens in Vegas Stays on YouTube — headlined the Philippine Digital Convention 2019 earlier this month. The two-day event that provided guests with first-hand experience solutions and innovative concepts for future enterprise use.

During an interview with members of local press, Qualman shared his views on the global digital transformation and traditional business disruptions. Aside from writing, he also spreads the innovations of technology and social media as a professional keynote speaker.

According to Qualman, with the culture in the country revolving around family and relatives, Filipinos should also not lose sight of what’s important and that’s real-world human interaction. “As I travel the world that’s the key message that I want to get across. Digital is really there for when time and distance are an issue but its not designed to replace face-to-face (conversations). All digital leaders understand that concept, that balance between the offline and the online,” he shared.

Qualman also said that online users now seem to have shorter attention spans that are “shorter than that of a goldfish.” This is partly the reason why podcasts are increasingly gaining a larger audience, most of the population in the US are trying to introduce entertainment while working or doing other activities. Qualman this scenario would be replicated in the Philippines as well.

When asked how the TikTok app is thriving as a video sharing platform, he replied: “Technology changes every second but human nature never does. We’re always going to love music.” He also noted that based on gathered data from multiple studies, the Philippines is usually spotted in the top three among countries who use social media the most. “The amount of digital usage is palpable, you can feel it here which is very exciting,” he noted.

Then again, Qualman also acknowledged that Old School preferences remain despite the ongoing global digital transformation. He pointed out, “Ninety percent of the world still prefers to read on paper. I thought everyone would just want to read on a Kindle or on their mobile device.”

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