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60 seconds with ... David Gee, Internal Consulting Group, strategic IT practice leader

by InFinance | 25 May 2016

In today’s world it’s getting increasingly difficult to stand out from the crowd. As part of this series, we’re spotlighting exceptional Finsia members who have scaled to the top of their fields. Although successful in their own right; all of them attribute their successes to people they have met or educational programmes that have shaped the way they view the world. Join us as we take a glimpse into their professional journeys.

David Gee

We've read your title, now tell us how you would describe what you ACTUALLY do to a friend at a BBQ?

I always get that question — suffice to say that I am a change agent who happens to be a CIO. Right now I’ve been doing CXO Advisory and work as a Venture Capitalist. Following my last transformation CIO role, this is always a great time to recover and get ready for the next significant executive challenge.

What's the biggest factor that's shaping your industry right now?

We all hear that financial services is facing unprecedented change and transformation. This is true — from my advisory gigs with large financial institutions it is clear that there is an agenda to be regulatory compliant and also improve the customer experience. At the same time, I working with start-ups on an advisory basis and they all want to be like the big guys. There is a natural ‘yin and yang’, here and how these two forces can find a way to be integrated as ‘lego’ blocks will determine the future winners.

What led you to pursue your career path in the first place and can you remember where and when the light bulb came on?

I was never one of those people that knew exactly what I wanted to do when I grew up. But I was very clear what I didn’t want to do — for me I wanted to take the road less travelled, never take a safe option and always look for challenge and growth. Where there is significant challenge and transformation, then there is learning and great life lessons.

To what extent have your career goals changed/remained the same?

As a young man at university I was married with a child. My career goal was to not follow my father’s entrepreneurial path and forge a career in business.  As I worked in different industries I always had a strong inner belief that I could make a significant difference wherever I worked.

What is the one thing you would have done differently in hindsight getting to where you are now? 

Not much, each and every mistake has been a great learning lesson. By the same token, every successful transformation has also been instructive. I learnt as a CIO that my greatest legacy is leaving behind footprints, while I never set out to grow other CXO leaders, that has been one of the most satisfying aspects of my career.

Who is your most influential or inspirational professional influence and why? 

I’ve had the privilege of working for some great leaders, thus this is not a single person or event. It is the culmination of working with leaders that were decisive but incredibly inclusive and others that were extremely strategic. I’ve taken pieces from each of these leaders that I admire and have adopted into my own approach.

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