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Think Tank Radio: Conversations in a Digital World
49 minutes | May 20, 2021
From She-cession to She-covery: Rising from the Pandemic
The Buzz [May 2020/updated January 2021]: “Women are in the bullseye of this pandemic … In leisure, hospitality, education, health care and retail — the sectors that are getting hit the hardest — women are the ones who are falling victim to the first massive waves of this economic crisis.… Women are disproportionately those who do the lowest paid jobs in our economy… women of color in particular are over-represented.” (Emily Martin, VP, National Women’s Law Center, www.cnbc.com/2020/05/14/coronavirus-job-losses-disproportionately-impact-women.html] From the 2020 start of the COVID-19 pandemic, it was apparent that the economic crisis affected women more than men – 61%, according to some reports. In this “She-cession”, the financial challenges, career-juggling burden, children’s education, and shortages of food and other necessities fell disproportionately on women. Today, as the economy opens up and we enter a “She-covery” period, some analysts project it may take at least a year for most women – up to several years for women of color – to recover. How can businesses, IT and technology use learning systems and financial guidance to help female employees, their families and local communities expedite this She-covery? We’ll ask Maryann Abbajay at SAP, Denise Malecki at PwC and Ali Wyatt at the Female Founder Collective for their insights on “From She-cession to She-covery: Rising from the Pandemic”.
53 minutes | Apr 22, 2021
What Does “Future-Proofing” Your Business Actually Mean?
The Buzz: “Future-proofing is the process of anticipating the future and developing methods of minimizing the effects of shocks and stresses of future events. In general, the term future-proof refers to the ability of something to continue to be of value into the distant future—that the item does not become obsolete. [en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Future_proof] We hear it all the time: leaders need to “future-proof” their businesses. But what does that actually mean? One thing is clear, you must start with a solid foundation and be ready to change. In the currently evolving post-pandemic world, it can be difficult to determine when you have that solid foundation. Is the same as the one you had pre-pandemic? And while the driver remains the same: achieve resilient and consistent business outcomes – and the benefit is similar: support continuous business innovation and drive profits and growth – the way this is achieved might be radically different in 2021 and beyond. It can affect all aspects of your business – what you sell, who your customers are, what their buying behavior is, and how your employees work to support those customers. We’ll ask Deloitte’s Mike Bechtel, SAP’s Thorsten Leiduck and Deloitte’s Arjun Krishnamurthy for their insights on the best way businesses can prepare for a semi-known future.
48 minutes | Apr 1, 2021
Building Supply Chain Resilience in Consumer Products and Retail
The Buzz: “Many companies did not fully prepare their supply chains to deal with the mounting impact of the coronavirus epidemic…There are steps…to make sure their supply chains can better cope with other disruptive events down the road…revisiting the design of the supply chain to ensure it is ultra-agile and responsive…to deal with future large-scale crises.” (https://hbr.org/2020/02/prepare-your-supply-chain-for-coronavirus February 27, 2020) The supply and demand foundations of the consumer product and retail (CPR) sector have been massively shaken by the COVID-19 pandemic. Take digital acceleration. Online sales in 2020 were expected to increase at their fastest rate in 12 years, accounting for 20 percent of all retail purchases. But this ecommerce spike came at a time of risk and disruption to supply, as the sector’s majors – grocery stores, pharmacies, other retail outlets – struggled to keep their supply chains intact. One example: Unilever saw huge demand for hand sanitizers but a decline in non-essential beauty products. To understand these challenges and how CPR organizations are now responding, Capgemini launched a survey of 400+ CPR executives in eleven countries, examining the impact of COVID-19 on their supply chains, and how they are rethinking to accelerate supply chain resilience. We’ll ask Capgemini’s Lindsey Mazza and Gabriel “Gabi” Ledesma and SAP’s Harris Fogel for their take on Building Supply Chain Resilience in Consumer Products and Retail.
49 minutes | Mar 11, 2021
HR Transformation: Modernize HR. Prepare for Next.
The Buzz: “Building critical skills and competencies continues to top the list of priorities for HR leaders in 2021. Also on the radar — organizational (re)design and change, and leadership…None of these goals is new to HR leaders, but all have been made more urgent by the effects of COVID-19.” [www.gartner.com] While accelerating the need for digital transformation, the new business environment is creating immediate and large-scale challenges for workforce and skills. To prepare for “next”, HR leaders need to balance growth and efficiency – delivering value now while creating a future agenda. They must combine smarter people-strategies with emerging technologies and a connected human experience to deliver a transformation that is built to last. HR cloud was never meant to be the full answer. Technology that provides the foundation to modernize HR is only as good as the leaders who identify its opportunities, the technologists who deliver it and the people who work with it every day. When you can tap into each employee’s everyday experience, to motivate, guide, and reward them in real time while keeping their priorities aligned with corporate goals, your entire organization will experience wins. We’ll ask HR leaders Greg Selke, Hope Bailey and Cyrus Salazar for their take on HR Transformation: Modernize HR. Prepare for Next.
47 minutes | Mar 4, 2021
High Hopes for 5G: Will It Breathe Life Into Our Cities?
The buzz: “5G is one piece of the puzzle to become more of a digital city that relies on connectivity more effectively. Broadband expansions, wireless networks, IoT deployments, economic development drivers…make up the overall smart city ecosystem.” [www.csbj.com/premier/businessnews/the-5g-promise-smart-cities-smart-businesses-smarter-medicine/article_15a650b7-ec34-5241-9f93-ba4b1c6675f3.html] The year 2020 saw some of the world’s most vibrant and populated cities become deserted, with Covid-19 pandemic lockdowns that forced the closure of offices, hospitality, retailers, schools and more. Some observers and business analysts have suggested cities will never return to pre-pandemic activity. Why? Too many people have seized the opportunity to move away from overcrowded, expensive cities to live in quieter suburbs and countryside. With the future uncertain, can 5G technology help to breathe life back into our cities? If yes, how and when will 5G help attract and grow businesses and improve city life? We’ll ask Deloitte’s Robert Kasegrande and SAP’s Frank Wilde and Michaella Munyuzangabo for their take on High Hopes for 5G: Will It Breathe Life Into Our Cities?
50 minutes | Feb 4, 2021
Boosting Employee Engagement: Human Experience Management – HXM
The buzz: “I’ve always been surprised by CEOs who don’t take the results of employee engagement scores seriously…Companies need to accept that employee engagement scores are paramount…either companies improve or people will leave.” (Ron Thomas, Strategy Focused Group, the-future-of-commerce.com) More than business tools and technologies, your employees’ talent and drive keep your company moving forward. Managing their experience requires continuous listening, quick responses, and support including new ways of learning, better mentoring and engaging, stronger focus on health and well-being, and a recommitment to diversity and inclusion. A holistic Human Experience Management HXM approach has emerged: new school vs. traditional HR, the organization’s needs vs. the employee’s, and the future of the employee experience. We’ll ask Penny Stoker and Maya Smallwood at EY and Emily Wilson at SAP for their take on Boosting Employee Engagement: Human Experience Management.
50 minutes | Dec 23, 2020
Welcome to The Work from Home Revolution!
The buzz: “Despite all the positive press about working remote, some studies suggest it’s not what it’s cracked up to be.…WFH burnout and the virus itself have combined to shock the health and well-being of workers worldwide.” forbes.com The COVID-19 pandemic started a work from home revolution in early 2020. Now nine months later, this “grand experiment” has sparked serious questions in search of answers. The downsides of WFH? A Twingate study of 1000+ workers found remote employment is causing a loss of a sense of work/life balance during the pandemic, and other issues. How can employers support seasoned remote workers vs younger employees who require in-person guidance? What does WFH mean long-term for businesses paying for empty office space, storefront retailers without walk-in traffic, and urban residential overcrowding? We’ll ask Jonathan Pearce at Deloitte and Dr. Autumn Krauss and Dimitar Niklev at SAP SuccessFactors for their take on The Work from Home Revolution.
53 minutes | Nov 19, 2020
Agile Commerce: Buzzword or Critical Business Need?
The buzz: “Innovating the business model is a skill that every company needs from time to time but changing the model near-instantly and perhaps radically is something else. Whether tweaking the model or transforming it, virtually all companies have had to make changes during the pandemic.” [fortune.com] COVID-19’s rapid spread has redesigned the business landscape, with many organizations rethinking their sales model for B2B and B2C transactions. They require integrated digital commerce systems for order and product management, delivery tracking, and account management to deliver a personalized customer experience. In March 2020, consumers urgently demanded contact-free, curbside pickup for groceries and more. Retailers who responded gained customers and loyalty; laggards lost both. We’ll ask PwC’s Brandon Lee and Munish Gupta, and SAP’s Blaine Trainor about the meaning and strategies of agile commerce and why it is becoming a major business driver in the COVID-19 era.
50 minutes | Nov 12, 2020
The Empowered Patient: Implications for Healthcare Delivery
The buzz: “Seamlessly integrated technology platforms helped healthcare organisations react swiftly to the coronavirus pandemic, ensuring safe and secure patient care after the world shut down. That same technology is changing the way doctors and patients interact.” [healthcareitnews.com] Pre-Covid-19, patients met in-person with doctors and tests were performed in hospitals. Now, many avoid medical facilities and physicians deliver diagnoses by phone and Zoom. A recent Capgemini survey asked people how their attitudes towards healthcare have changed in 2020. The results: “The empowered patient” will have a profound impact for pharmaceutical companies, payers, healthcare providers, medical devices manufacturers, technology companies, regulators, and of course, the patient themselves. [capgemini.com/research] We’ll ask Capgemini’s Eliza Silvester, SAP’s John Murray and Capgemini’s Marisa Slatter for their take on The Empowered Patient: Implications for Healthcare Delivery.
47 minutes | Nov 5, 2020
Can Entrepreneurship Be Taught? Three Authors Say Yes!
The buzz: “Like saplings, many startups fail to grow – many die 1 – 3 years after launch. While there are many factors leading to the failure of a startup, one of the main reasons is the lack of expert startup advice founders receive.…Experience of a seasoned entrepreneur is precious – and no matter how many theoretical models you study, you simply can’t replace the experience they’ve gained through actually doing the work, failing, and succeeding.” (blog.hubspot.com) Entrepreneurship has many faces today – standalone start-ups as well as corporate incubators. How does an individual succeed as an entrepreneur? Can it be taught in schools? Is everyone born with the 'entrepreneur DNA'? We’ll ask three authors who approach entrepreneurship from distinct angles: Kyle Garman, author of The Entrepreneurial Mindset. Bryan Pearce, author of Daring to Compete. Brad Borkan, author of When Your Life Depends on It. Tune in for Entrepreneurship Hits the Books: Can It Be Taught?
49 minutes | Oct 29, 2020
ESG Environmental, Social, and Governance – A Growing Corporate Trend?
The buzz: “ENVIRONMENTAL do-goodism. Customers can't buy it. Shareholders can't invest in it. But a growing list of big-name companies appear to be spending ever-bigger chunks of their advertising budgets to promote it.” nytimes.com/2005 Climate change is real. Ice caps are melting. Once-frigid Siberia’s summer temperatures are far above normal. Extreme weather is fueling forest fires, tornadoes, hurricanes. Corporations are seizing the initiative and using technology to help them take meaningful action. For example, PwC, a leading consulting firm, committed to cut its total greenhouse gas emissions by 50% in absolute terms by 2030 by switching to 100% renewable electricity at all sites, making energy efficiency improvements in offices, and halving its business travel and accommodations emissions. We’ll ask Intel’s Mark Christian, PwC’s Viviana Voorwald and SAP’s Toby Croucher for their take on ESG Environmental, Social, and Governance – A Growing Corporate Trend?
50 minutes | Oct 15, 2020
Your Future Workforce: Teaching the Entrepreneurial Mindset
The buzz: “In the unknowable future, all leaders will need to be entrepreneurs: visionaries that can imagine, adapt, and act nimbly to address whatever challenges come their way.” (hbr.org/2020/08) With the business landscape shifting dramatically due to Covid-19 and other global disruptions, companies need to hire confident problem-solvers who can turn obstacles into positive outcomes to improve results. Such employees must be self-reliant yet collaborative communicators who are creative and innovative. But where to find them? Since 1987, NYCity-based nonprofit Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE) has taught project-based entrepreneurship to 500,000+ under-resourced students, with programs now in 18 U.S. states and 10 countries. We’ll ask EY’s Mike Kacsmar and SAP’s Kyle Garman and Dr. Malcolm Woodfield for their take on how entrepreneurial-focused education can benefit businesses in the 21st century economy on Your Future Workforce: Teaching the Entrepreneurial Mindset.
52 minutes | Sep 23, 2020
The Urgent Case for Agile Supply Chains
The buzz: “There have been, and will continue to be, many hard lessons learned in the world of supply chain management from COVID-19. One of those lessons is a sharp reminder that agility, adaptability and alignment win the day re: Triple-A Supply Chains concept by Stanford’s Hau Le in 2004.)” news.ncsu.edu The COVID-19 virus continues to wreak havoc on business operations around the world, impacting organizations of all sizes. Working in a highly manual “situation-room” mode, many companies are trying to match demand to available supply through tight spend controls bounded by CFO-defined cash flow and liquidity management mandates. Some are modeling recovery scenarios and creating alternate supply chain action plans and playbooks to prepare for optimal ramping-up. We’ll ask PwC’s Jacob Cunningham and Ashish Punjabi, and SAP’s Richard Howells to discuss what they observe as organizations try to navigate supply chain resiliency and to share new strategies for agile supply chains.
51 minutes | Sep 15, 2020
The Role of Futurists: Helping Organizations Plan a Path Forward
The buzz: “Futurology is concerned with ‘three P's and a W’, i.e. ‘possible, probable, and preferable’ futures, plus ‘wildcards’, which are low-probability, high-impact events, should they occur In The Left Hand of Darkness, Ursula K. Le Guin distinguished futurology – the business of prophets, clairvoyants, and futurists – from novelists, whose ‘business is lying.’” en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Futurist From 2000 to January 2020, the business world was changing rapidly. Then Covid-19 hit and the rate intensified. Uncertainty soared and continues. Some companies were prepared for disruption. Others may never recover. Forward-thinking companies engaged futurists to predict and assess trends. What do futurists really do for business organizations? Once the pandemic hit, how well did they predict its impact? Can they help companies protect themselves for the future? We’ll ask futurists Mike Bechtel at Deloitte, and Timo Elliott and Tom Raftery at SAP to explain their role and share insights.
48 minutes | Aug 26, 2020
The “Shecession”: Can Technology Help Working Women In The Covid Era?
The buzz: “In the Great Recession, men lost twice as many jobs as women. But from Feb. to May, 11.5 million women lost their jobs compared with 9 million men because of business closures intended to stop the spread of Covid-19. By the end of April, women’s job losses had erased a decade of employment gains. The staggering figures have underlined the changing nature of the workforce and brought into focus the overlooked issues attached to that shift. Women…are more vulnerable to sudden losses of income because of the gender pay gap and are more dependent on childcare and school to be able to work.” This Aug. 4 Guardian story raises big questions. Can IT and technology help businesses create a more equitable economy for individuals, families and communities? Can video conferencing, new learning technology, time management, AI and IoT add value right now – or how fast? We’ll ask Dina Patel at PwC, Margot C. Goodson and Kim Lessley at SAP for their insights on Tech and The Shecession.
50 minutes | Aug 5, 2020
Healthcare and IT: Managing a Pandemic on the Frontline
No industry has been impacted more in recent months than Healthcare. Healthcare providers have had to adjust on the fly to the uncertain demands of a highly contagious virus on critical care beds, resources, and new treatment protocols tested in a real-time clinical trial. Agility and speed in data capture and analysis have become a crucial need for healthcare executives in command centers around the world to manage COVID-19. Our panelists will discuss how organizations like Parkland Health and Hospital System in Dallas, Texas, partnered with IT vendors to extend their Intelligence platform to meet their enterprise-wide needs for real-time critical care capacity. The needs are urgent. The timescales are challenging. The question is, “How can IT, vendors and healthcare organizations work together for the greater good?” We’ll ask Amy Doescher at Intel, Karthik Vishwa at Fusion Consulting, and Walt Ellenberger at SAP about Healthcare and IT: Managing a Pandemic on the Frontline.
48 minutes | Jul 28, 2020
Welcome to Think Tank: Our World Is Shifting!
Our world is shifting, changing, and digitalizing at a faster pace than ever before. COVID is impacting the way we live and work and, for business leaders, there are still many more questions than answers. What is coming next and how can you and your organization prepare to thrive in an uncertain future? Our panelists, from leading IT companies, will be discussing the latest perspectives on topics spanning IT, innovation, and more. What are the organizations that are leading doing differently from others? How will businesses attract new customers, while keeping existing customers? What role can technology play? What is the human impact on employees and executives? We will cover strategic approaches – and the technologies that power them – that can transform your organization and set it up for success in the months to come. We’ll ask Vishal Sanghvi at Intel, Sue Hartford at Microsoft, and Paul Clark at SAP for their insights on “Welcome to Think Tank: Our World Is Shifting!”
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