Bryan Van Dyke, managing director and head of digital at Morgan Stanley, started his career in digital before there really was digital—at least the way we think of it today. In the early nineties, there was no WWW or GUI—only BBS systems, dial-up modems, and painfully long waits for text to load. In his 25 years of leading digital strategy for a host of companies, he’s ridden the ever-escalating waves of digital transformation. A few years ago, he joined financial services giant Morgan Stanley. Back then Morganstanley.com was a typical corporate website. Functional yes, but not engaging—and certainly not a driver of growth. Van Dyke knew the industry was changing rapidly and he—and the firm—had to accelerate the pace of transformation.
“There was a notion in financial services that it was okay not to be very good in digital. The attitude was always ‘Let’s be a fast follower. Let’s not blaze trails.’ But users don’t care if you’re a big bank or a startup. They just want an enjoyable experience,” says Van Dyke.1