Faces of Deloitte TMT is a series of articles exploring the personal histories of our practitioners, sharing the key experiences that defined their values and exploring why they do what they do. In this story, Greg talks about why he joined Deloitte Canada’s Sports Business Advisory practice.
“I joined consulting and actually travel less than I used to!” jokes Greg Douglas, a Technology, Media, & Telecommunications (TMT) manager with Deloitte Canada. Surprising as that may seem, it makes sense once you find out that, prior to joining Deloitte in 2019, Greg traveled the world as a two-time Olympic sailor, competing for Barbados at the Olympic Games Beijing 2008 and for Canada at the Olympic Games London 2012.
That said, he’s quick to point out that competition isn’t what drives him. “I’ve just always just loved sailing and loved getting better at it,” he says, “and that was way more important than the need to win.”
In fact, he considers himself a sports generalist and is a big believer in having a breadth of experience, which is why he initially joined Deloitte Canada’s Strategy practice. “I try to keep a broad range of experiences and pull from those,” he says. “It’s important to never be afraid of being bad at something and to just enjoy trying things.”
Based in Toronto, Greg is part of Deloitte Canada’s Sports Business Advisory practice, with a focus on SportsTech (see box). In addition to that, one of his key areas is safe sport, which involves keeping sport safe on both an emotional and physical level for players, coaches, officials, and fans. This has a personal element for him as his younger sister is an Olympic sailor and he’s committed to making sport safe for her and all his friends who are still athletes.
Of all the excitement he experienced in the Olympic Games London 2012, what stands out for him? He doesn’t hesitate: he was just elated to have qualified for the London 2012 team. And he was even more elated to wake up the very next morning to find the Olympic Games torch relay was just passing by his quarters and was able to have his picture taken with the torch bearer.
© 2022 - Comité International Olympique (CIO) - MORATAL, Christophe
SportsTech, Greg’s focus, provides solutions that change how we understand and consume sports, which can range from helping players with data and analytics to understanding how fans buy seats. Greg says he was always interested in the business side of sport, and while in college he was part of a sports tech incubator. So, when the Sport Business Advisory practice officially formed this year, he became one of its two founding members, along with Jeff Harris, National Practice Lead, Sports Business Advisory, Deloitte Canada.
The practice covers all things from broadcast and media companies to eSports as well as helps clients with the safe and profitable rollout of sports betting, on both the regulator and the operator sides. “I just love the breadth of what’s involved and tapping into everything,” says Greg.
His TMT client work involves what’s known as “stadium districts,” the re-purposing of traditional sports areas as live entertainment districts and enhancing fan experiences through, among other things, apps to help them get to the game, find parking, and find out how long concession and entry lines are. Through this offering the Deloitte team helps clients throughout the asset life cycle—from business case development to customer journey mapping.
“It’s exciting to help our clients think about how a stadium can become a social and cultural centerpiece for a city where people come together,” he says.