A SEAT at THE TABLE: Leadership, Innovation & Vision for a New Era

Jane Singer

Top international business leaders, entrepreneurs, innovators and authors share their experience, insights and outlook on how to drive business growth, build better companies, new fast growing technologies and where the next big opportunities are.

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What We Can Learn from SuperApps that Could Make Any Business More Competitive
Today
What We Can Learn from SuperApps that Could Make Any Business More Competitive
For many people who’ve turned into this podcast, you might be wondering “what is a super app?” And “if I’m not a tech developer, why is this relevant to my business?”I was thinking the same thing.But it turns out that the things that make these apps so attractive to so many people - and keeps them loyal - can be applied to almost any business.In this episode I’m speaking with Kevin Shimota, a leading expert on digital technology in China, a former senior executive at WeChat and then Director of Platform Strategy for Accenture.He’s also the author of “The First Superapp: Inside China’s WeChat and the New Digital Revolution”.The First Superapp tells the inside story of how the phenomenon of superapps began in China's unique internet market. It explores WeChat's creation and its climb to become the first superapp, and explains the fundamentals of these new apps and how they could be reproduced beyond China.Today Kevin will be talking about:What differentiates China’s super apps from anything that exists in the West.Why user value is the biggest moat that any brand can build around its business.The massive benefits of heavy investment in customer goodwill.Why KPIs tend to measure the wrong things - and can lead companies away from long term success.USEFUL LINKS:Connect with Kevin Shimota:  www.kevinshimota.comKevin’s podcast:   www.greatfirechat.com“The First Superapp: Inside China’s WeChat and the New Digital Revolution” : www.amazon.com/dp/B0B2DKXW2W/Learn about The Current Situation in Sourcing:  Seat at The Table website:
What We Can Learn from SuperApps that Could Make Any Business More Competitive
Today
What We Can Learn from SuperApps that Could Make Any Business More Competitive
For many people who’ve turned into this podcast, you might be wondering “what is a super app?” And “if I’m not a tech developer, why is this relevant to my business?”I was thinking the same thing.But it turns out that the things that make these apps so attractive to so many people - and keeps them loyal - can be applied to almost any business.In this episode I’m speaking with Kevin Shimota, a leading expert on digital technology in China, a former senior executive at WeChat and then Director of Platform Strategy for Accenture.He’s also the author of “The First Superapp: Inside China’s WeChat and the New Digital Revolution”.The First Superapp tells the inside story of how the phenomenon of superapps began in China's unique internet market. It explores WeChat's creation and its climb to become the first superapp, and explains the fundamentals of these new apps and how they could be reproduced beyond China.Today Kevin will be talking about:What differentiates China’s super apps from anything that exists in the West.Why user value is the biggest moat that any brand can build around its business.The massive benefits of heavy investment in customer goodwill.Why KPIs tend to measure the wrong things - and can lead companies away from long term success.USEFUL LINKS:Connect with Kevin Shimota:  www.kevinshimota.comKevin’s podcast:   www.greatfirechat.com“The First Superapp: Inside China’s WeChat and the New Digital Revolution” : www.amazon.com/dp/B0B2DKXW2W/Learn about The Current Situation in Sourcing:  Seat at The Table website:
A Mindset Shift that Will Help Every Team Member Find Greater Fulfillment
3d ago
A Mindset Shift that Will Help Every Team Member Find Greater Fulfillment
A lot of conversations around leadership tend to focus on corporate culture.  While culture is important, it tends to be a bit ‘big picture’ and not particularly relatable to the entire hierarchy of team members.This is where ‘purpose’ can play an important role in helping support both individual team members to find more fulfilment in their work, as well as creating a greater sense of direction for teams.If you’re wondering how a company can inspire people to change the world, then this is the podcast for you.In this episode I’m talking with Dr. Ahktar Badshah, creator of Purpose Mindset Workshops, and author of Purpose Mindset: How Microsoft Inspires Employees and Alumni to Change the World Dr. Badshah is  a seasoned executive with over 30 years of experience in international development, managing a corporate philanthropic program and co-founding a global nonprofit for social enterprise. He led Microsoft’s philanthropic efforts for ten years, where he administered the company's community investment and employee contributions. In this episode of A Seat at The Table, Dr. Badshah will be discussing:The game changing value of focusing on who you want to serve as opposed to who you want to be.How your values and mission combine to create your purpose.Purpose Accountability: Why being transparent with your purpose is crucial.Why we should prioritise being effective over being efficient.Why doing things the right way might not be as rewarding as doing the right thing.USEFUL LINKSDr. Akhtar Badshah’s websites:  www.purpose-mindset.org   www.restart.usLearn more about The Current Situation in Sourcing: Seat at The Table: A road map to landing guest spots on podcasts Seat at The Table podcast website:
The Game Changing Business Benefits of Process Documentation
Sep 21 2022
The Game Changing Business Benefits of Process Documentation
Most companies don’t realise how many processes are part of their day to day business.  That is until we need to onboard a new team member or even do a task or operation that we haven’t done for awhile.Then we face that massive speed bump in trying to figure out what needs to be done - not just generally, but the actual steps we need to take.   That could in completing a process or using software or hardware that we haven’t used before - or haven’t used for some time.The solution is documenting each process.  The challenge is actually getting team members to do this - not just once, but to continually up date the documentation so that it is current and accurate.In this episode we’re going to hear from Owen McGab Enaohwo, CEO & Co-Founder of SweetProcess, a company that enables leadership and team members to more easily document processes so that they can scale their business.What You'll Learn:- How to make process documentation ongoing - without interrupting your workflow.- Why a collaborative approach to documentation can improve both documentation and the processes themselves.- How prioritising process documentation can help companies build much greater efficiency - without having to invest a lot of time or money.USEFUL LINKSConnect with Owen McGab Enaohwo:   more about SweetProcess: more about The Current Situation in Sourcing:   Seat at The Table: A road map to landing guest spots on podcasts:  Seat at The Table podcast website:
Designing a Workplace Culture that Accelerates Team & Individual Performance
Sep 18 2022
Designing a Workplace Culture that Accelerates Team & Individual Performance
As leaders try to navigate their businesses through a more complicated market environment, their Human Resources can be their most valuable resources - if they can keep them focused and engaged in the tasks at hand.This has led to increasing conversations about the importance of corporate culture.Many leaders think that this means creating a lofty vision expressed in flowery language.  However culture only works when it is practical and actionable.  But how do we do that in the face of distracted team members and hybrid work?Today I’m speaking with Gustavo Razzetti, CEO and founder of Fearless Culture, a culture design consultancy that  has helped leaders from Fortune 500s, startups, nonprofits, and everything in between on every continent but Antartica. He created the Culture Design Canvas, a framework used by thousands of teams and organizations across the world to map, assess, and design their culture.Guvstavo is the author of four books, the most recent being “Remote, Not Distant: Design a Company Culture That Can Help You Thrive in a Hybrid Workplace”In this episode of A Seat at The Table, Gustavo talks about:1. Can workplace culture be designed - and how we can do this.2. How to make our company culture easier for employees to understand - and more actionable for leaders.3. How leadership can overcome the challenges of a hybrid work model.4. What he’s learned working with a wide range of companies - from the best to the worst.USEFUL LINKSGustavo’s LinkedIn profile. :  Culture company website: download of Culture Design Canvas: your copy of “Remote, Not Distant”:  about The Current Situation in Sourcing:  Seat at The Table website:
A Faster, More Successful Way to Recruit Top Talent
Sep 14 2022
A Faster, More Successful Way to Recruit Top Talent
Whether you are running a huge organisation or a small business, one of the challenges everyone faces is finding the right talent.  This can be especially daunting if you are looking for senior people with more specialised skill sets.  It’s not just finding the right person.  It’s about finding the right person with the right skills - and who is the right fit for your company.  And doing it in the shortest amount of time.For many businesses, especially in the tech sector - but not exclusively - this has led to a global outreach where companies need to be able to recruit and evaluate candidates from multicultural backgrounds.But is there an efficient and effective way to vet a large pool of candidates - and determine with any level of accuracy who might be the best person for a specific job?In this episode I’m speaking with Alex Svinov, CEO & Co-Founder of Insquad, a company that helps tech startups  find developers 4X faster and build remote-first teams.  Insquad has developed a method that shortens the recruitment process and saves time screening hundreds of CVs or resumes.His company has an impressive 80%+ interview-to-hire rate and has worked with over 300 tech startups.The methodology he’s developed at Insquad could be applied to any industry - not just the tech sector.There’s a lot we can learn from Alex’s experience, including:1. A faster, more efficient way to find the right talent.2. Why a candidate’s mindset is as important as their skill set.3. How remote working can enable companies to tap into rich talent pools around the world.USEFUL LINKSConnect with Alex Svinov:  website:  more about The Current Situation in Sourcing:   Seat at The Table: A road map to landing guest spots on podcasts:  Seat at The Table podcast website:
How to Build - and Retain - a Team of A-Listers
Sep 11 2022
How to Build - and Retain - a Team of A-Listers
Employee retention is one of the most talked about topics these days.  Even heading into what looks like an economic slowdown, many companies are struggling to find and retain top talent.As much as technology has moved into the workplace, thanks to new developments in AI, bots and digitization - there’s still a need for people who are innovative, have leadership skills, technical knowledge and can build relationships with customers.Good people usually what differentiate the top companies in any field from their competitors.However, finding those individuals who can help move our companies forward has many leaders shaking their heads in frustration.Today I’m speaking with Marc Reifenrath, CEO & Co-founder of Spinutech, a full-service digital marketing agency with 150+ team members across the U.S.Over the past 22 years, Marc has helped Spinutech grow from a college start-up to one of the premier full-service digital marketing agencies in the country. The secret ingredient? Company values that include “Get Better Every Day”.The proof?  In its first 10 years Spinutech had zero staff turnover.In this episode of A Seat at The Table, Marc talks about:1. Why the first 100 days are so critical for a new employee.2. How the having the right core values attracts A-Players from diverse backgrounds.3. Why people are a company’s key competitive advantage - even in a digitally-driven world.USEFUL LINKSConnect with Marc Reifenrath:  Spinutech’s website:  www.spinutech.comLearn about The Current Situation in Sourcing:  Seat at The Table website:
Website Speed Could be Why Your Online Store is Losing Sales
Sep 7 2022
Website Speed Could be Why Your Online Store is Losing Sales
When we think about ways to improve online sales, we typically don’t think about website speed.  However  site speed can play a critical role in driving sales - or driving  customers away.We know that today’s shopper waits for no one - and alternatives are a mere mouse click away.But can a site that loads slowly really be part of the reason why online stores lose sales?  And if so, then what kind of boosts to traffic or revenue can we achieve by optimising our site’s performance?In this episode I’m talking with Shawn O’Neill, founder of SpeedSense, a boutique consultancy and SaaS toolset company that helps enterprise brands lift revenue, improve customer satisfaction, and cut costs by running a faster website.SpeedSense has helped a client increase organic traffic by 35% simply by speeding up their website.They’ve also help a client raise annual e-commerce revenue by over $5 million in a few months through site speed.There’s a lot we can learn from Shawn including:1. Why it’s so difficult for e-commerce brands to run a fast website.2. What you need to prioritise so that your site is not only fast - but also engaging.3. How reducing your back-end server pool can help reduce CO2 emissions and your carbon footprint.USEFUL LINKSConnect with Shawn O’Neill:   SpeedSense website: more about The Current Situation in Sourcing:    Seat at The Table: A road map to landing guest spots on podcasts:  Seat at The Table podcast website:
Low Cost B2B Marketing That Builds Brands and Drives Sales
Aug 31 2022
Low Cost B2B Marketing That Builds Brands and Drives Sales
B2B marketing has been something that most companies either did randomly or not at all.While those targeting the consumer market understand that marketing is a must - the companies selling to other businesses see promotion or advertising as, basically, a waste of time and money.The entire burden of driving sales falls squarely on the sales department, who rely on labor intensive efforts that are not efficient - and do little to build up the company’s brand image.Putting lots of posts on social media doesn’t cost money, but it doesn’t differentiate your products from your competitor’s either.So what are those leading B2B marketers doing that helps them win sales, stand out in a crowded market - and doesn’t break the bank?In this episode I’m talking with Donna Peterson, CEO of World Innovators, a B2B Growth Strategist helping companies grow by building relationships that foster trust. By understanding each company’s mission, she is able to create smart goals and a cohesive marketing plan to help them to achieve results that exceed expectations.    World Innovators has spent over 42 years working closely with B2B companies.  From this she knows what works - and what doesn’t - and what marketers need to do differently when facing more challenging economic times.In this podcast Donna talks about:The most cost-effective promotion for B2B marketers.The power of combining content creation with brand advertisements.What successful marketing has shifted to quality over quantity.USEFUL LINKSConnect with Donna Peterson:  Innovators website:  www.worldinnovators.com Learn more about The Current Situation in Sourcing:    Seat at The Table: A road map to landing guest spots on podcasts:  Seat at The Table podcast website:
How to Make Team Training More Engaging & Productive
Aug 28 2022
How to Make Team Training More Engaging & Productive
Well trained teams are one of the foundations of a successful business.  That can be a challenge, especially in businesses where front line teams have to keep up to date on a vast amount of new products.   Or in companies where team members need to be knowledgeable about products or services that are complex or very technical.In  the old days companies would send people to training sessions or courses - some of which last days or even weeks.That’s no longer a viable option for most companies.  Fortunately, this is being replaced by innovations in online learning, the most recent and user-friendly being learning apps - that enable team members to study anywhere - and at any time.Today I’m speaking with Darren  Winterford, CEO and founder of EdApp, a learning app that’s helping B2C and B2B companies empower their teams through easy to use training interfaces.He’s a pioneer in the microlearning space,  and with the current focus on the democratization of learning, EdApp, together with the United Nations, have launched Educate All: An initiative to increase access to free, high-quality and impactful education around the world.In this episode of A Seat at The Table, Darren talks about:1. How mobile apps are an easy to use driver of more educated teams.2. Using micro learning to keep colleagues up to date - in real time.3.  How to use learning apps to make training easier and more engaging.USEFUL LINKSEdapp website:   https:// edapp.comConnect with Darren Winterford:   linkedin.com/in/darrenwinterfordLinkedIn page:  linkedin.com/in/edapp-micro-learningDarrent’s Twitter: twitter.com/thisisedappLearn about The Current Situation in Sourcing:  Seat at The Table website:
Billion Dollar Retail Opportunities that Everyone is Overlooking
Aug 21 2022
Billion Dollar Retail Opportunities that Everyone is Overlooking
These days when we talk about retail the conversation quickly turns to e-commerce.In a tech centric era, the pandemic was the perfect storm that convinced everyone that the future of retail was online.Industry advisors and media proclaimed “Go digital or die”. Companies threw every possible resource at building or enhancing their e-commerce channels.  Massive amounts of capital was poured into technology-based digital solutions - oftentimes at the expense of everything else.Everyone wanted to ‘replicate’  what Amazon was doing, with the hope of capturing some it the marketplace giant’s success. As we found out ‘learning from’ and ‘replicating’ are two different things.With the pandemic behind us - and inflation ahead of us - is the future of retail still going to be heavily dependent upon e-commerce?And if not, what could the next successful business model look like?In this episode Walter Holbrook, a retail consultant with over 50 years of experience in senior management roles at retail chains including Kmart, Kids Outlet, Turner Home, and Rugged Warehouse, shares what he sees as the multi-billion dollar overlooked opportunities in retail.  In this episode he’ll be discussing:Why retail needs to refocus on driving profits rather than chasing sales.How grass roots retailer chains are cashing in - without e-commerce or heavy investments in technology.What successful retailers are getting right - and how its helping them win even in highly competitive markets.USEFUL LINKS:Connect with Walter Holbrook:   more about The Current Situation in Sourcing:   Seat at The Table: A road map to landing guest spots on podcasts:  Seat at The Table podcast website: