Kristi Barrow

ADVOCACY maker
EXPERIENCE maker
value maker

Kaoru Nishinakagawa

Deepak Murthy
Head of Innovation, Qantas Loyalty
AGSM MBA (Executive) 2014

Deepak Murthy is searching for the next big wave of growth for Qantas by converting business challenges into technology solutions to grow the airline's Loyalty division.

As the Head of Innovation at Qantas Loyalty, he creates better customer experiences for the more than 12 million members who earn and use Qantas Points for dozens of products and services. These include travel, financial services, health and fitness, and even wine.

Innovating around insights

Deepak and his team are constantly building, testing and launching new business models and products – by innovating around insights.

"We have big ambitions as to how we use the assets we have to drive value for the organisation. We’re constantly trying to build more advocacy for Qantas with existing customers and more broadly in Australia."

Deepak has an engineering degree and his background in technology includes banking and consulting - and he used to code. He has evolved from a technical expert to a strategic leader, consensus builder and problem solver.

Building bridges

He says "I'm classic AGSM material in that I started off with a very focused skillset, but the MBA freed me to work and think so much wider. After taking accounting and corporate strategy, I understand the concepts of how companies operate and how we would manage finances as an organisation. You can then extrapolate that into a big company like Qantas. That unlocked whole areas for me in terms of my career."

Today Deepak sees innovation as more than just applying technology to customer pain points. It’s also about establishing commercial value and organisational capability to implement it successfully.

Creating coalitions for action

He credits his AGSM MBA with much of his success in finding and testing new ways of making more of the Qantas brand. It helped him understand and engage with diverse arms of the business and credits his AGSM experience with helping him develop coalition building skills.

"Nothing really happens here with only one person. You can't influence people unless you understand where they're coming from." It’s the relationships and coalitions his team forms across the business that powers them to actually get new ideas out the door. "Nothing’s better than when something you've been working on for a really long time sees the light of day. When you launch something, I think that's huge."

The biggest thing my AGSM MBA gave me was the opportunity to interact with people from different backgrounds, like marketing or accounting, finance or commerce. When you go through the AGSM MBA programme you get a sense of all of those different occupations. You know enough to conceive really good questions and the confidence to ask them.

Deepak Murthy
Head of Innovation, Qantas Loyalty
AGSM MBA (Executive) 2014

Kaoru Nishinakagawa

Co-Founder of Innovation Dojo
AGSM MBA 2016

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