University St. Thomas Spring Seminar

 

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Understanding the new frontiers in corporate strategy and innovation was a key theme University St. Thomas Spring Seminar focusing on Risk Leadership.  The event was hosted April 25, 2018 on the UST campus located in downtown Minneapolis Minnesota.  The event featured keynote speakers and several breakout tracks focusing on Risk Leadership and Risk Managment.   The attendees were primarily senior practitioners from twin cities corporations, as well as, SMEs from consulting firms and university students are in the UST Risk Management programs.

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Arizona’s Cybersecurity Taskforce

United-States-Map-2The state of Arizona is increasing its focus on enterprise-level security controls with the creation of a cybersecurity task force.
First year Governor Doug Ducey signed an Executive Order creating Arizona Cybersecurity Team, “ACT.”
The overall plan is to create a collaborative structure across the 22 members of executive branch-level officials .  It will also bring in representatives from the legislature, higher educations, local government, the private sector and other state agencies.  The goal is to protect Arizona from a cyberattack.
The team’s responsibilities include developing recommendations and advising the governor on cybersecurity issues; offering advice on federal resources available to fight cyberthreats; promoting public awareness of threats; fostering collaboration between government, the private and education sectors, law enforcement and others; and driving cybersecurity and IT workforce development and training at the higher education level.
Source: govtech

Elements Group Speaking at MACC

IMG_5162.jpgI was a speaker at the 2017 Midwest Architecture Community Collaboration this November held at the Double Tree Hotel.  A large community of architects, technologists, and strategists convened for both presentations and workshops.  My presentation covered top challenges that business and technology leaders will face as the speed of business and technology increases.

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Key topic areas included:

  1. The Nature of Competition is changing:   In this section, I talked about how last century there were around eight clearly defined business strategies in markets and how since 2000+ over 30 strategies are now active and many are more complex requiring new internal capabilities, external partnership,s and new value systems.  Most companies today lack the business intelligence and strategic planning process required to map these new strategies and map their ecosystems effectively, including cross-sector threats.  Many companies ignore these options and keep on doing what they have always done giving time to the competition, but regardless of being proactive with offensive strategies, companies will be forced into developing defensive strategies as their competitor’s differentiators start to disrupt their business.
  2. Regional Competitive Advantage:   All around the world, leading cities are developing regional development plans with industry to create more competitive business environments.   This is creating entirely new playing fields where companies can’t afford to not be active in these regions given the advantages in industry clusters, investment, government policy, workforce development, education, and entrepreneurship are all integrated and operating a significantly higher level of acceleration.    Business need to explore the global landscape to see how these regions are developing and how they can get involved.   For cities and companies that don’t develop their own regions may find themselves at a great disadvantage in the coming years and workforce, investment and companies are forced to leave atrophying regions in search of more competitive advantages.  While foreign cities are leading the way, establishing best practice, several USA cities have taken very proactive steps and have easily a 6-8 year head start.  Many USA cities are pretty complacent,  but they fail to see that are in a declining state vying to be the next Detriot.
  3. New Role:  Lastly,  I spoke about new roles that are needed in corporate leadership and in regional leadership.   These represent huge career paths and opportunities for today’s business, technology and government leadership.

See more pictures of the event in the photo gallery

UST: Risk Leadership at PWC

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With Elements Group holding a board position on the UST Risk Leadership Team,  we enjoyed attending the first fall forum and panel discussion.   On stage, were several risk leaders from companies in the twin cities area and PWC practitioners.  The interaction with the audience was very open and it created a nice atmosphere of discussion.   Also, each panelist was asked to comment on each question, so we were able to get insights from different perspectives and environments.   This is the 1st of an ongoing series and I’m looking forward to the spring event.  The overall tone of the first meeting was pretty much in the trenches risk management, but the overall theme of risk leadership also moves into areas about the risk of not acting and innovating for organizations.   Hopefully, this more proactive role will come into focus as the series progresses.

After the panel discussion, food was served and the attendees enjoyed the rooftop PWC patio overlooking the MSP downtown.  There practitioners and students were able to network, discuss the learnings from the panel and begin to form a community that will be involved in future events.  The overall tone of the first meeting was pretty much in the trenches risk management, but the overall theme of risk leadership also moves into areas about the risk of not acting and innovating for organizations.   Hopefully, this more proactive role will come into focus as the series progresses.

See more pictures of the event in the photo gallery

You can learn more about this initiative at the UST Risk Leadership site

Kansas City Living Lab

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I attended the overview of the Kansas City Living Lab.   This is an impressive initiative centered developing solutions for smart cities.   The city has been declared “open” for entrepreneurs in IOT to develop and live test their solutions with the partnership of the city and economic development organizations.   They are developing a strong brand as a leading smart city and IOT hub.   It is attracting companies and start-ups to the region and the real world results are creating proven case studies of solutions.  I look forward to visiting the city in the next year to see how this story evolves.

 

Soft Launch – Elements

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November marks the design and development of a new company and brand.

The focus of the new organization is the culmination of the past tens years of studying corporate innovation centers and the past four years looking at the development of regional innovation ecosystems across cities around the world.   The work is ongoing documenting frameworks, patterns, and best practices that are being used.   Decision support trees that highlight interdependencies and trade-off between approach options.  While this information has resulted in methodologies for corporations and regions to incrementally develop new capabilities in the innovation realm,  the internal focus has been on the collection of data and development of several book series that will explore in depth the approaches, trends, and nuances that have shaped the direction of approaches due to varying competitive conditions around the world.

Stay tuned for a 1st quarter 2018 launch of the new brand.