“In this very digital world, the greatest disruptor is the human emotion.” While modern technology can enable advanced forms of interpersonal interaction, it must be used thoughtfully to produce meaningful results.

On episode 159 of DisrupTV, our hosts Vala Afshar and R “Ray” Wang interviewed Melanie Katzman Ph.D., Author of CONNECT FIRST: 52 Simple Ways to Ignite Success, Meaning, and Joy at Work; Les Ottolenghi, EVP & CIO at Caesars Entertainment; and Brian Fanzo, Speaker & Change Evangelist. Here are a few quick takeaways from the episode:

Connect with Colleagues to Enhance Worker Productivity

Whether technology is a helper or a hindrance for workplace communication all depends on how it is used. In her new book, CONNECT FIRST, author Melanie Katzman Ph.D. emphasizes the importance of establishing meaningful connections with your coworkers and business partners. Technology can certainly assist on this front by bringing people together from all over the world; unfortunately, as more people rely on computers to communicate, they can forget to form those fundamental human-level bonds with their associates.

Melanie’s book is grounded in the idea that maintaining human connection is essential to create meaning and joy at work. If you can create a meaningful experience for your employees, the spillover benefits will be immense: people will come to work engaged and motivated to do more for the organization. Conversely, Melanie warns that disengaged employees don’t produce at the level that they could. For those seeking to create a more connected workplace, Melanie’s book has several helpful tips to read up on.

IT Development is All About Finding and Solving Business Problems

Some big changes are occurring in sin city. Les Ottolenghi has led Caesars Entertainment down the path of digital transformation by overseeing the creation of a modernized IT infrastructure and software suite for all their properties, which has allowed Caesars to implement an entirely new customer engagement model. This massive transformation initiative epitomizes the process of establishing business goals first and using technology to reach the desired outcome.

In Caesars’s case, the underlying goal of their investments was to deliver a superb and innovative customer experience. To achieve this, they first needed to reach a deeper understanding of their customers’ individual needs. Using advanced data collection and analytics technologies, they have been able to determine consumer preferences for entertainment and subsequently create the standout customer experience that they had been striving for.

Les is one of the newest members of Constellation’s BT150. Each year, Constellation Research recognizes innovative executives who are leading business transformation efforts and making an impact within their industries.

Create Content Strategically to Build Trust

As brands realize the importance of creating content to engage with their customers, Brian Fanzo says that the key to connecting with modern audiences is developing trust. Companies need to be strategic with the content they choose to produce, focusing specifically on building and scaling trust. Brian says that podcasting has emerged as the most intimate medium for digital content. Almost like reading a book, people can listen to others’ stories while applying their own vision to what they are hearing. Being able to foster this kind of personal connection to the organization’s content can make a huge difference when attempting to reach diverse audiences.

While businesses face complex macro problems, concern for technology should never supplant concern for the individual. Thoughtfully forming connections with people is a good practice that won’t go out of fashion.

This is just a small glimpse at the great insight shared during the show. Please check out the full discussions in the video replay here or the podcast.

DisrupTV Episode 159, Featuring Les Ottolenghi, Melanie Katzman, Brian Fanzo from Constellation Research on Vimeo.

DisrupTV is a weekly Web series with hosts R “Ray” Wang and Vala Afshar. The show airs live at 11:00 a.m. PT/ 2:00 p.m. ET every Friday.