A few years ago I did some contract work at ad agency JWT on the Microsoft business. While there that I met Josh Shabtai. Josh had a digital title but his thing was gaming and coding. You could tell he wasn’t one of those guys you easily could put a label on or fit into a box. He was just Josh and you knew he could invent and solve problems. Fast forward a few years and lo-and-behold he is living in the NC piedmont working at Lowe’s. Didn’t see that coming.
His title is Sr. Director | Ecosystem, Lowe’s Innovation Labs at Lowe’s Companies, Inc. and yesterday I had a chance to see him online at a PSFK event (thanks Piers Fawkes) entitled Future of Retailing, something/something.
I shop at Lowes because it is closer, but I’ve always thought of it as Burger King to Home-Depot’s McDonald’s. Well, I’m not so sure anymore.
Josh and Lowe’s understand that a real opportunity zone for Lowe’s is service — for consumers and professionals. Tool geeks want to geek-out with other tool geeks. Pretenders like me want to learn without embarrassment. Tyros want their hands held. And for all DIYers, YouTube is the go-to platform. Josh sees a future in which “services are delivered through screens” and his job is to make the Lowe’s Innovation Labs ground zero. Why cede the home improvement service to YouTube? So he’s building.
The journey should be an exciting one. Watch out for it.