By Glenn Jeffers
The Kellogg School of Management convened its inaugural Kellogg on Growth forum on Nov. 10, bringing together some of the world’s most influential thought leaders to discuss their approach to driving and studying growth at the enterprise, macroeconomic and personal level.
More than 1,400 attended the one-of-a-kind event, which featured nearly 60 speakers — including Kellogg faculty, alumni and prominent business leaders — delivering fresh ideas and new perspectives on taking organizations to the next level via growth and scaling, a fundamental challenge that most businesses face. PricewaterhouseCoopers was a presenting sponsor for the event.
In opening the event, Dean Sally Blount ’92 highlighted the dual meaning of the word growth as a matter of increasing both economic value and self-knowledge. Balancing that understanding of size and scale with clarity and insight is an essential tool that future leaders must master, she said.
“We have a driving need to understand how we can survive and thrive in this new economic, political and social order,” Blount said.
Opportunities for growth
The one-day conference included thought-provoking sessions and interactive engagement opportunities that covered four distinct programming tracks, each one examining the factors that can lead to long-term growth:
- Markets, Values and Growth explored the opportunities and challenges of public-private partnerships and sustainable impact investing. Participants heard from policy-makers and private sector leaders on how innovative partnerships will enable economic growth.
- Networks and Disruption included leaders in human-machine learning networks, disruptive startups and innovative corporations examining core concepts that will enable transformative growth in these spaces.
- Customer-Driven Growth shared ideas on creating a customer-focused culture, aligning it with growth strategy, building organizational muscle in data analytics, and discussing cross-border growth and how different customers inform an organization’s business model in the region where it operates.
- Scaling and Financing Growth delved into how organizations can successfully achieve profitable growth through the lenses of culture and human capital, strategy and finance.