Leading Through Disruption

We are living in a world where change is the norm. Disruption is no longer a novelty, it is way of life, inside and outside of work.  The forces that drive the intense disruption create complexity that challenges even the most agile organizations. To thrive, organizations must find new ways to balance the waves of change and innovation to create coherence.  This is a world that needs speed, agility, and new models to meet the evolving needs of the business.  

As HR leaders, we must lead the biggest challenges organizations are facing today—shifting the mindset on how today’s businesses embrace disruption. From developing top-notch recruitment and attraction frameworks that meet the challenges of the talent wars, to re-tooling HR with specialty disciplines that can help manage complexity, organizations are relying increasingly on an expanding HR portfolio to meet the expectation of a consumer-grade experience, 24/7 communications, and shorter and shorter change cycles.

To remain successful, HR leaders must orchestrate all of this in ways that balance stakeholders and the business, stepping into the uncertainty to deliver outsized results that transform organizations from the inside out. At the Strategic HR Forum: Leading Through Disruption, we will explore the critical role HR leaders play in creating a competitive advantage by finding value within the disruptive layers of the business environment. 

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Brigette Mcinnis-Day
Chief HR Strategy & Digital Transformation Executive
SAP SuccessFactors

Success Factors for Business Transformation
Date and Time: TBD 

We are faced with stories daily about companies lagging in their efforts to digitally transform, causing them to lose competitive ground to newer entrants and business models that are poised to disrupt markets with innovative products and services. CHRO’s today are challenged to lead business transformation, both at the enterprise level and across their own functional area of Human Resources, while delivering a consumer grade experience for employees.

HR leaders can reduce complexity and drive growth while putting people and experiences at the heart of our organizations. In this session, SAP SuccessFactors Chief HR Strategy and Transformation Officer will discuss these trends and show companies how they can embrace the new world of business where you can exceed employee expectations and achieve business success.

Michael Arena, PhD
Chief Talent Officer 
General Motors
Positively disrupt or be disrupted. 
Date and Time: TBD

Description:  To edge out the competition in today’s disruptive environment, you need to ensure that your company is agile―that it can respond to change instantly and effectively. Because fast and furious change is the only thing you can count on in business today. Network expert Michael Arena helped enable GM’s legendary turnaround. In this session, based on his book Adaptive Space: How GM and Other Companies are Positively Disrupting Themselves and Transforming into Agile Organizations he will highlight how you can transform your own company through the concept of adaptive space. Based on hundreds of interviews and Arena’s own groundbreaking study of dozens of organizations spanning a variety of industries, you’ll learn how to position your company for today―and for the future―by enabling creativity, innovation, and novel ideas to flow freely among teams, across departments, and throughout the company.

Dean Carter
Vice President of Human Resources & Shared Services

Date and Time: TBD

Description: Patagonia and Sears may seem like diametrically different organizations, but they share one shred of DNA - question it ALL.  And at this unique moment in the HR profession - where disruption has us poised for renaissance or irrelevance - it’s the kind of jolt all HR leaders need right now.  From gender equity to the merit matrix - this session will challenge your values, rethink the most sacred of HR practices, and maybe even make you consider buying a surfboard.

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Matthew Burns
Head of HR
Driving HR Innovation When You Aren't a Fortune 1000 
Date and Time:  TBD

Description: The calls for disruption and innovation in HR are getting louder. Though with constrained budgets and shrinking resources, where do HR leaders start? In this session, Matt will share how in less than 12 months, the HR team at JYSK sourced, acquired and implemented five (5) disparate technologies to create their own (custom) enterprise platform at a fraction of the cost of traditional solutions. Their transformation automated administrative tasks, transitioned the HR department to near-paperless daily operations, and was recently recognized as the: ‘Most Innovative Use of HR Technology’ in Canada. Join Matt as he shares his key criteria for selecting technologies, the lessons learned – both positive and constructive, and the organization’s progress since implementation. 

Kristen Roby Dimlow
Corporate Vice President, Microsoft Total Rewards and HR Business Insights
Culture Journey – Top 10 Lessons Learned
Date and Time:  TBD

Description:  To continue leading digital transformation globally, Microsoft is transforming, adopting a Growth Mindset, rethinking its people processes and practices, and driving positive change across its diverse, multi-generational global workforce. In this session, Kristen Roby Dimlow will cover how Microsoft is evolving its culture to navigate the company’s own digital transformation and will share the top 10 takeaways Microsoft learned about culture change.  Kristen will also share how HR at Microsoft is enabling the company’s digital transformation, so you can directly or indirectly apply these insights to your own transformation efforts. 

Sandra Leung
EVP & General Counsel
Bristol-Myers Squibb
 Coming soon!

Sandy Leung is the Executive Vice President and General Counsel of Bristol-Myers Squibb Company. She leads the worldwide Law Department and is responsible for a wide range of legal areas including intellectual property, commercial and regulatory law, litigation, corporate governance and securities and transactions including licensing, acquisitions and divestitures. She also has responsibility for Environment, Health & Safety, Corporate Security and Corporate Philanthropy.

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Simon King
Global Head of Talent and Workforce Innovation
Bristol-Myers Squibb

 Coming soon!

Simon King is a senior HR executive with more than 25 years of experience in the Bio-pharmaceutical industry. In 2013, King joined Bristol-Myers where he is now the Global Head of Talent and Workforce Innovation, leading an integrated talent function supporting 24,000 BMS employees globally. He has worked globally throughout his career and led progressive people strategies to enable organizations to thrive and transform.

Elaine Mason
VP, People Planning,
Design and Analytics
Cisco Systems

Coming soon!

 As the Vice President of People Planning, Design and Analytics, Elaine Mason leads a transformation function at Cisco that works with senior executives on executive talent and performance management, workforce analytics and planning, organization effectiveness and design thinking. Since joining Cisco in 2016, Elaine has lead two transformation initiatives – one focused on building management capabilities focused on people planning and a second focused on reinventing the company's talent strategy.

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Christopher Kujawa
Vice President, Human Capital Capabilities
American Express

Coming soon!

Christopher Kujawa is a Senior HR Executive with 20+ years’ experience helping companies maximize the potential of their people to drive business results.  Christopher currently serves as Vice President of Human Capital Capabilities at American Express based in New York responsible for Human Capital Insights, Organization Effectiveness and HR Mergers & Acquisitions.  In this global role, Christopher brings 3 Centers of Excellence together leveraging data insights, business acumen, consulting skills, and deep SME knowledge to impact change.  

Deborah Torosian
Vice President, Organizational Effectiveness
American Express

Coming soon!

Deborah Torosian is a Vice President, Organizational Effectiveness at American Express in New York.  In this global position, she and her team partner closely with senior business and HR leaders across the company on organizational design and development, organizational agility and change leadership.  In addition, she has led multiple organizational design and change management initiatives to enable the company’s transformation.


The Strategic HR Forum provides the perfect setting for HR leaders to engage in meaningful conversations that will inspire a new way of thinking. Take advantage of these networking events to meet, reconnect and re-energize with fellow leaders.


Continue the conversation with speakers and colleagues in a small group setting. Space is limited and seats must be reserved in advance.


Enjoy this opportunity to explore in small groups hot topics and trends that are top of mind for HR leaders.


Representatives from the industry’s top firms will be on hand to discuss the latest products and services that can address even the most complex organizational challenges.


Take advantage of this unique opportunity to network with your peers from across the profession and industries.


Kick off the conference by mingling with fellow attendees, speakers, and partners. 


Take your Forum experience to the next level!

 Inspired by its iconic address that unites city, lake and sky, The Ritz-Carlton- Chicago stands a beacon in Chicago. The revitalization of the property sets the stage for a modern luxury experience, innovative dining and personalized stays. The lobbies, ballrooms and social venues have been thoughtfully designed taking cues from Chicago’s bold architecture and modern influence unveiling a true sense of place.

Let the 2018 Strategic HR Forum and the Ritz-Carlton Chicago be your gateway to everything Chicago has to offer:

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