Mike Harris is the founder of First Direct and Egg.
He has led companies that consistently stand out from the competition.
As founding Chief Executive of First Direct, Harris built a bank with unprecedented levels of customer loyalty.
At Mercury Communications, Mike Harris took over as CEO of a company running out of growth opportunities and desperately needing reinvention. By creating an exciting, fast-growing consumer brand he doubled profits to over £200m per annum in less than three years. Whilst at Mercury he also supervised (as Chairman) the launch of the mould-breaking mobile operator Mercury One to One.
As founding Chief Executive of Egg Plc. Britain’s first internet bank and for a number of years the biggest in the world, Mike Harris built a financial services organization that broke all growth records and moved into profit right on schedule.
As a leading authority on approaches to strategy, leadership, innovation and culture. Mike Harris is a sought after speaker and advisor for organizations and associations internationally.
He speaks regularly on innovation at mid-career MBA courses at MIT and has served on Government Committees on the transformation of public services
Mike’s approach to business is to challenge accepted beliefs and limitations and seek new ways of meeting customer needs. He has developed (and applied in many situations ) approaches to strategy, leadership, innovation and culture designed to produce what many considered, at the time, impossible breakthrough results.
Harris can speak on topics related to innovation, strategy, leadership, culture, technology and financial services and usually designs a tailored speech to meet the needs of a particular company or conference.
Speaking topics include:
Building an Innovation Habit:
With examples from his own companies and many others, Harris illustrates how almost any company can power up growth by an approach to a business model, proposition, product and service innovation based around systematic customer insight and segmentation.
Leading Breakthrough Strategies:
Almost all startups are constantly faced with producing results that are beyond the predictable. The lessons learned from successful start-ups can be applied to any organisation seeking to reinvent itself and produce breakthrough results.
Harris is uniquely qualified to speak on this topic: given five successful start-ups, his leadership of organisational reinvention at Mercury Communications and his advisory roles to public sector bodies and the Royal Bank of Scotland.
The Challenge of New Technology:
New technology is constantly challenging many industries to reinvent their approach to dealing with customers. From the demand for multi-channel strategies in Financial Services to the threats posed by the apparently converging strategies of the Internet giants (Google, Yahoo, eBay, Amazon) around a Search/Find/Obtain model nothing stands still for long.
With his experience of adopting new technologies to transform industries and his previos role at Garlik, on the leading edge of deployment of new internet technologies based on the semantic web model (with Tim Berners-Lee on his advisory board), Harris can give a wide perspective on current challenges and ways of dealing with them
Identity and Privacy in the Digital Age – the shocking truth:
Based on his experiences at Garlik and supported by work undertaken at Privacy International and by leading criminologists, Harris explains how a surprising amount of personal and sensitive information is easily available on the internet to anyone who wants to check us out or steal our identities.
Precautions most people take such as buying a shredder or installing firewalls and virus checkers are valuable in their own right but don’t help with this problem. With case studies ranging from financial fraud and people being turned down for jobs, to people being arrested for offences committed by someone who had stolen their identity Harris illustrates the problem and explains the practical steps and legal remedies available to us.
Innovating on the Edge of Reason:
A personal story of Harris’s experiences of building innovative new businesses and services. Peopled by a fascinating cast of characters including Princes, Prime Ministers and Shakespearean actors, and containing numerous sanity challenging episodes this is a light-hearted exploration of how to stay on track and keep the innovations rolling through whilst all around you seem determined to distract you.
At its heart, this presentation contains a serious message about the place a leader has to stand to make innovation happen.