As some of you may know, last year I shared with the North America Retail Forum attendees my white water rafting experience. There is something deeply satisfying about successfully navigating the river’s currents, rocks, and waves as well as enjoying moments of calm to catch your breath. Nature’s power offers a good metaphor for what we try to deal with in the business world. So, I wasn’t surprised that in a recent conversation, SAP co-CEO Jim Hagemann Snabe compared sailing and yacht racing to business (also see video). There are similarities between what happens on the deck of a racing yacht and in the c-suites. Plans based on projected wind speed and direction, currents, your crew’s skills and capabilities, and competitive moves and behaviors all come together to guide the team’s execution during the actual race. One needs to prepare well for the race and once it starts, the team must communicate and have the right set of tools to assess and adapt in real-time to the changing conditions. To compete one needs to have a plan – a strategy – and be ready to adapt once the execution starts. Preparation is an important step whether you’re racing yachts or selling widgets to consumers.
Upcoming Retail Forum, Dallas, Texas (October 1-3)
Similarly, the 2012 North America Retail Forum is an amazing venue for you and your company to prepare, read the currents, and arm your teams with the tools and concepts necessary as you build the right strategy and tactics to win your specific race. The benefits of getting retailers and experts together in an offsite are real and can help generate a lot of good ideas to craft your path to success. This action-packed Retail Forum brings immediate value as it offers you ideas to maintain or change your tack, consider making some minor tweaks or take on major corrections. Not only will you connect with some of the best thought leaders and practitioners in retail today, but you’ll have the opportunity to explore many topics in depth and breadth within a single venue dedicated to retail. Take a look at the Retail Forum agenda and create your own customized calendar from the 34 sessions! Make sure to reserve your place TODAY (register here) so you can collaborate with retail peers, partners and experts, and take back something concrete to get started with when you return to your office.
What should you expect?
- World-class keynotes to challenge your current thinking about business and retail
- Innovative retailers share their experiences: Nieman Marcus, Fossil, Luxottica, BJ’s Wholesale, Lowe’s, Loblaw and many others
- Store tours: PetSmart, Office Max, ILORI, Brookshire Grocery, Oakley, and Fossil
- Numerous demos in the Innovation Pavilion and take away concrete steps to move your business along a growth trajectory – these include latest releases such as SAP Planning for Retail, SAP Precision Retailing, SAP Promotions Management, SAP Forecasting & Replenishment, SAP Social Customer Engagement, and many others.
- Many timely and retail relevant microforum sessions designed to help you transform your business and take control of your future
- Exclusive “Meet Our Customer Lounge” to discuss topics of interest to your retail company with an existing SAP customer
And as I mentioned in my last blog, you will have the opportunity to join me and others on Monday on the packing line as we prepare those nutritious boxes in support of the Food for Orphans outreach program. What a great way to bring professional and business activities together with such a wonderfully meaningful and humane initiative. Don’t forget to register TODAY!
I’ll see you there!