Keynote Sessions

Title:  Driving Success with a Culture of Care Speaker: Sumeet Salwan
Date and Time: Sunday, October 23 3:00-4:30 PM
Description: Sumeet Salwan joined Johnson & Johnson in July 2015 and is currently the Worldwide Vice President of Human Resources for their Consumer Family of Companies. In 1993, Salwan started his career with Unilever and went on to hold a number of positions of increasing responsibility. Most recently, he was Senior Vice President of HR for Unilever North America, a $10 billion business with a full suite of category-leading brands across the personal care, food, ice cream and beverage categories. With experience that spans the globe, Salwan spent three years in Singapore as Head of HR Unilever South East Asia and Australia New Zealand. He also spent six years in Europe in both senior regional and global roles focused on Leadership Development, Organization Effectiveness and Reward. Earlier in his career, he led the global program management office for HR, partnering with the Chief HR Officer to deliver the transformation plan for Unilever. Prior to this, Salwan held a variety of operational HR roles in areas such as factory HR and Supply Chain, with central expertise in recruitment and business partnering.

Title: Aligning Corporate and HR Strategy in the Management of CultureSpeaker: Edgar H. Schein and Melina Merino
Date and Time: Sunday, October 23, 4:45 PM-6:15 PM
Description: Ed Schein is dedicated to advancing organizational development and design through a deeper understanding of organizational culture. In this session Schein will discuss several key roles HR plays to insure that corporate strategy, HR strategy, and the management of culture are aligned with each other.  First, HR has to help the CEO and the executive team to recognize the HR implications of the business strategy.  Second, HR has to educate the CEO and the executive team on the dynamics of managing corporate culture and possible subculture alignment problems.  Third, the HR function has to become clear about its own role in culture management and to recognize that HR cannot manage culture but can help the CEO and the executive team to understand that they are the culture managers.  HR provides the critical educational function and then follows up with whatever support is needed by the CEO and the executive team.  Key to this education is to insure that the CEO and the executive team recognize that they already have a culture which may need to be evolved.

Title:  Creating the World’s Largest Hotel Company: A Cultural Legacy for Future Success Speaker: David A. Rodriguez
Date and Time: Monday, October 24, 8:30 AM-10:15 AM
Description: In 1927, newlyweds J.W. and Alice Marriott opened a nine seat root beer stand in Washington, D.C. that rose into a chain of family restaurants to its first motel in 1957.  Their son, Bill, the current executive chairman of Marriott International, served as CEO for 40 years and built one of the world’s leading hotel companies.  Along the way, Marriott also entered and grew a number of other businesses, introducing many innovations. The foundational element to the company’s historical success and to its current transformation remains rooted in the cultural philosophy of its founders:  If you take care of employees, they will take care of the customers, and in essence the business – strategy, innovation, execution, financials – will take care of itself.  This session will examine the underpinnings and actions that sustain Marriott culture and propel business success, while enabling its associates to live their best lives.    

Title:Building a High Performance Business Culture: The JetBlue Story Speaker: Daniel R. Denison and David Barger
Date and Time: Monday, October 24, 10:30 AM-12: PM
Description: This joint presentation by Dan Denison and Dave Barger provides an external and an internal perspective on how to build a high performance business culture.  Dan Denison is Founding Partner of Denison Consulting, LLC and Professor of Organization and Management at IMD Business School in Lausanne, Switzerland.  Dave Barger was CEO of JetBlue Airways from 2007 to 2015, leading one of the most successful airline start-ups in history. Denison will frame this session by outlining why corporate culture is so essential in building a successful organization and describe the approach that he and his colleagues have developed through their work with literally hundreds of organizations over the past twenty years.  But Dave Barger will provide the main act by sharing his insights on how he viewed the importance of the JetBlue culture as they built the organization from the ground up, focusing on the key points of leverage that he sees as the most critical to their success.  Dan and Dave will also do a joint Q&A session with the audience to close out this dynamic session. 

Title:  Using Culture to Drive Exceptional Fan Experiences Speaker: Paul Richardson
Date and Time: Monday, October 24, 3:15 PM-4:45 PM
Description:ESPN was founded in 1979 in the rolling hills of Bristol, CT. Revolutionary for the time, a 24-hour sports channel was launched and founded with a simple yet elegant and powerful mission: to serve sports fans. Now, 37 years later, ESPN is a preeminent brand in all of sports and is a clear leader among the world’s best media and entertainment companies. During this program, Paul Richardson, Senior Vice President, Human Resources, ESPN and Chief Diversity Officer, The Walt Disney Company, will share his thoughts on how the mission, culture and diversity of Disney and ESPN consistently deliver on its brand promise, provides exceptional fan experiences, and drives financial results.    

Title: Only Humans Need Apply: Winners and Losers in the Age of Smart Machines Presenter: Julia Kirby, Harvard University Press senior editor and business book author
Date and Time: Tuesday, October 25, 10:15 AM-11:30 AM
Description: In a new era of smart machines, automation doesn’t only displace assembly-line workers and checkout clerks. Well-educated "knowledge workers” are feeling the threat now, too. Once computers prove they’re more capable of decision-making, will there be any higher ground left for humans to claim? Hear Julia Kirby’s well-researched and powerfully optimistic perspective on how people are not only adjusting to the rise of the machines, but taking on more ambitious projects, creating more value, and enjoying their work more than they ever have before. Much depends, however, on the mindset of managers: that is, whether they aim to automate work or augment it. As the most human-oriented managers in their organizations, HR leaders have a big role to play – including, ironically, by being early adopters of some exciting (and distinctly nonhuman) cognitive technologies in their own work.

Concurrent Sessions

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