From leadership via corporate culture to artificial intelligence

Leadership, innovation, corporate culture, customer demands rising faster than ever before and the new challenges posed by new technologies, particularly from the field of artificial intelligence: these were the topics that characterised the first day of the 7th Global DIY Summit in Dublin. In this sense, John Venhuizen, president and CEO of Ace Hardware, as first speaker from the industry, emphasised, in a very emotional contribution, the importance of corporate and personnel management - with a healthy heart. The day ended in a similar tone: Greg Hicks spoke about what really makes happy people happy and what that means for corporate management. The podium discussion, which was led by Steve Collinge for the second time, this year on the topic of innovation, didn't have quite the pace as it did last year. In this context, Obi-boss Sergio Giroldi also pointed out the importance of a (new) corporate culture, but hardly divulged any details about the work of the new Obi Next department.
He explicitly declared his support of the stationary trade business model which, of course, has to be connected to a cross channel model. Erwin Van Osta, from the Belgian Hubo chain, implored the necessity of moving from confrontation to cooperation. The podium, on which Hartmut Jenner from Kärcher and Vincen Legros from Bostik were also sitting, were in agreement on the fact that the speed in which innovations arrive on the market needs to increase. Insights into the customer-focussed way of working by Amazon were given, inter alia, by Nancy Rademaker. A thoughtful note was also struck by Stéphane Mallard who spoke about artificial intelligence and its future influence on our lives and ultimately posed the question of free will.
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