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RETAILCRAFT RECAP: ”Unlearning, to relearn” – Greg Duce of Reckitt

The RetailCraft podcast takes a glimpse into the world behind multichannel performance, including the who, the how, the weird and the wonderful.

During the series, hosts Ian Jindal and Jamie Merrick interview special guests from the likes of Tesco, eBay and Liberty London to find out what goes on behind the scenes.

In the most recent episode, which you can listen to on Apple Musicor Spotify, they spoke to digital doyen Greg Duce, who is the Area Ecommerce Director for Europe, Australia and New Zealand at Reckitt.

We discuss everything from the company’s brands (including Dettol, Durex & Airwick) through to the realities of moving direct to consumer, embracing digital and maintaining values.

Digital Editor, Scarlette Isaac, shares some of the most interesting issues raised.

Tell us a little bit about Reckitt?

“We are Reckitt, named after our founder, Isaac Reckitt. Then we merged with the Benckiser family in 1992 which brought a lot of our healthcare brands across. Now we’ve gone back to being Reckitt.

“Our purpose is to protect, heal, and nurture in our relentless pursuit of a cleaner, healthier world.”

On Covid-19

“Covid took ecommerce from being important, to mission critical because when you look at the access to the products, there was nothing available.”

“There was nothing in the stores and then suddenly everyone’s trying to get this product [Dettol] and ecommerce was the place you could get it. Alongside that, there was this huge responsibility we had around how we ensure that healthcare practitioners get it first.

“You kind of forget the power of, when things go into an emergency level, people go back to what they trust,” Duce added.

What bits of you need to be unlearned and relearned for the next five years of the D2C journey?

“I think the first thing you do in ecom is realise that because you’re talking or living something that the majority still don’t know as well, you’re the teacher and you have to quickly become a student again, because otherwise all you do is teach all day and you realise how old it becomes.

“Black Friday, for instance, I’m just getting schooled by 21 year old interns telling me stuff I never knew. So there’s a lot to be said about whether you call it reverse mentoring or just staying on the frontline.

“The next piece, once you get that kind of executional edge, how do we stay ahead of execution? It’s the transformation part of it, which is if you like more of a strategy side and that’s learning about where we need to be.”

Final thoughts

“I think the leaders that are succeeding in the market are able to balance two things: the scale of winning today and the balance of growth and winning tomorrow. Those two things are paradoxical.”

To find out more about Duce’s digital journey, Reckitt’s D2C strategy and Durex in the metaverse – listen to the full podcast here.

The full transcript is now available to download here.

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