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Breakout Sessions

The Mid-Market Convention is designed to have experts leading discussions of the other experts in the room.  It is not a typical “speakers address an audience” environment.  In fact, there are no presentations and lectures. Everything is interactive.

Panels and workshops are configured differently to deliver ideas and tools with short and long-term application and impact.

Panels allow 1/3 of the time for panelists to present their ideas, 1/3 of the time for open discussion and debate across the room, and 1/3 of the time to create a shared vision to present to the world with specific actionable ideas to report.

Workshops are facilitated sessions in which CEOs and experts in the room help each other strengthen knowledge and skills. Learnings and ideas are shared with the community via notes, slides, and takeaways.


State of the Mid-Market

Discuss how and where things are going for the Mid-Market as a whole.

Jay Dearborn, WEX

Bio Pending

Joe Adams. RSM US LLC

Bio Pending

Tony Miller, Bind

Bio Pending

Craig Circosta, Ballard Spahr

Bio Pending

Big Data: Know Your Customer; Accelerate Growth

How can you leverage data to gain a sustainable competitive advantage?

This session will explore:

  • Collecting data – the do’s and don’ts
  • Analyzing data – how to uncover insights
  • Actioning data – how to make the data work for you

Healthcare: Recruit, Retain and Protect Your People

How can we keep our people healthy without breaking the bank?

This session will explore:

  • A mid-market bundling program to create a more cost-effective health insurance program
  • The ACA and mid-market companies’ benefit strategies
  • Creative alternatives and options
  • Preventative care initiatives
  • Wellness programs/Promoting work-life balance
  • Progress report from the CEOC Health Care Committee
Doug Robinson, Chairperson of the CEOC Healthcare Committee

Doug Robinson, Chairperson of the CEO Connection Healthcare Committee, is a results oriented executive driven by strong financial and operational experience.  He has a proven track record in large, mid-size and small organizations, public and private, with progressive responsibility building organizations.  He has successfully built senior management teams and reshaped Board of Director groups that drive shareholder value.  Mr. Robinson has held executive level positions with organizations such as United Health Group, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Deloitte Consulting, WorkWell Systems and LifeVantage Corporation.  Further, he has served in various advisory capacities with many large corporations as well as Director positions with various Boards.  Mr. Robinson received a B.A. in Marketing, Public Relations and Speech Communications from Gonzaga University where he continues to guest lecture on health care economics to its graduate and undergraduate schools.  Mr. Robinson has been married to his wife Mary for 18 years, and together they are the parents of a blended family of six adult children who are scattered throughout the United States.  They now have five grandchildren.

Risk Management & Cyber Security:

What You Don’t Know Can Kill You

How can companies anticipate and mitigate the inherent risks of doing business? How can you best mitigate losses in the event of an attack?

This session will explore:

  • Regulatory risks
  • Financial risks
  • Social risks
  • Country risks
  • The ever-evolving hacker environment
  • Core principles of cyber-security
  • Specific actions you can take to mitigate risk

Talent Management:

Recruit, Educate; and Retain the Best People

How can we best acquire, develop, and keep talent?

The session will explore:

  • What it takes to be a “best place to work”
  • What it takes to be a “best place to work for millennials”
  • Creative channels to find talent
  • Developing stars
  • Motivating talent
  • Progress report from the CEOC Talent Management Committee Projects
  • Update on the CEOC CHRO Forum
Joe Hart, Dale Carnegie

Bio Pending

Innovation Connections:

Find & Integrate M&A Opportunities

How to source, evaluate, fund and integrate acquisitions

The session will explore:

  • Major challenges to M&A success
  • Agents for success
  • Identifying and assessing opportunities
  • Access to Capital
  • OnBoarding the acquisitions
  • Preventing culture clashes
  • Ensuring alignment
  • Progress report from the CEOC Innovation Connection Network
Adam Breslawsky, Oberon Securities

Bio Pending

Ollen Douglass, Motley Fool

Bio Pending

Tax Policy: Here We Go Again

How do the current tax policy changes affect the way you do business?

This session will explore:

  • Minimize taxes
  • The best ways to manage your corporate balance sheets, P&L statements, and cash flows domestically and across borders
  • Legal responsibilities and liabilities… including personal
  • What to do what not to do and when do you do or not do it
  • The CEOC Tax Checklist powered by RSM

Performance & Cultural Alignment Workshop:

Working Together Accelerates Growth

How to make your organization more predictable and profitable?

Find out how companies have achieved this through:

  • Removing organizational drag
  • Aligning the company’s core values to how the business is actually managed
  • “Running the numbers” – a unique perspective
Mark Follows, Carpedia

Bio Pending

Andrew Rush, Carpedia

Bio Pending

Jacques Gauthier, Carpedia

Bio Pending

Boards: Can’t Live with them; Can’t Live Without Them

How can you effectively “manage” your Board of Directors and recruit strong board members?

This session will explore:

  • Defining and identifying strong candidates for your board
  • Best practices in engaging in discussions with potential board members
  • Clarifying the difference between approval, accountability and advice
  • Best practices in managing board’s strategic, organizational and operational processes
  • Where to find board members (and where not to look)
  • How to compensate board members
  • Diversity is critical to success

Education: Leverage the Mid-Market Internship Program

How can mid-market companies partner with universities so everybody wins?

This session will explore:

  • The Mid-Market College Internship Program
  • How to compete with larger companies for talent on campus
  • Business skills needed to work in the Mid-Market
  • Opportunities to partner with universities
  • Relationships with community colleges
  • Progress report from the CEOC Education Committee

Customer Centricity: Focus on your Customer; Really Accelerate Growth

How can companies gain a competitive advantage by refocusing on the customer?

Dimensions to be addressed include:

  • Understanding what Customer Centricity is and what it isn’t
  • Building stronger customer relationships
  • Understanding and anticipating their behaviors
  • Applying Customer Centricity to government
Peter Fader, Wharton School

Bio Pending

Gender Diversity: Key to Excellent Results

How can we enhance the diversity in the C-Suite and on the board?

This session will explore:

  • The programs to help mid-market companies include more women in senior management
  • How does your company look to potential women executives
  • Building a pipeline of diversified talent
  • Providing support and education
  • Progress report from the CEOC Most Influential Women of the Mid-Market Advisory Board
Karyn Schoenbart, The NPD Group

Bio Pending

Dr. Kathryn Ritchie, Ignition Institute

Bio Pending

Strategic Planning: Where Innovation Meets Scale

How can mid-market companies compete with more nimble smaller companies and large companies with significantly more resources?

This session will explore:

  • Best practices in tackling industry giants
  • Convergence tactics
  • Divergent tactics
  • Integrated business planning

Protecting your Trade Secrets: The CEO Primer

So you think you have protection… how can you best keep your trade secrets and what is your exposure? 

This session will explore:

  • Trade secrets are not just the secret formula for Coca-Cola. They are some of your most valuable assets;
  • Your biggest threat: employees – not hacking;
  • What you need to know to protect your secrets from the insider threat;
  • Difficulties created by doing business across states and country lines.
Russell Beck, Beck, Reed, Riden LLC

Bio Pending

Personal Branding Workshop

How can you best manage your own brand as a CEO to drive growth for you and your company?

This session will explore:

  • A BRAVE approach to personal branding (Behaviors, Relationships, Attitude, Values, Environment)
  • Context and purpose
  • Strategy
  • Messaging and implementation, including media choices

Technology: Digital Transformation How and Why

How can the Mid-Market work together to close the digital divide developing in today’s economy?

This session will explore:

  • Leadership: The ability to see changes in the ecosystem and create a DX vision
  • Omni-Experience: Blend digital and physical experiences to garner customer allegiance
  • Information: Turn information into a competitive advantage
  • Operating Model: Create new digital revenue streams from connected systems
  • Worksource: Leverage technology to win the war for talent

Government Contracts: Regulations lead to Opportunities

How to develop partnerships with minority businesses to win Government contracts?

This session will explore:

  • Partner with Small Minority Businesses: Access + Scale = Sales
  • Where to find partners
  • How to create a win/win
  • Business opportunities, services and resources being offered by government agencies that benefit mid-market companies
  • Connecting with government agencies and participate in their programs
  • Progress report from the CEOC Government Partnership Committee
Paul Decker, Mathematica Policy Research

Bio Pending