Panel - Lessons Learned in Fostering a Culture of Innovation

Enlightening Exchange with

Hanna Phan, Michael McCathren & Hao Dinh

Head of Innovation Culture & Comms Strategy at vmware | Sr Principal, Enterprise Innovation at Chick-fil-A, Inc | Vice President of Technology at Enpro

March 17, 20:00 CET/3pm EDT/12pm PDT

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About the session

Culture is one of those words used left and right in lofty mission statements, recruitment ads and team charters. It seems every company now has or wants to have a "culture of innovation". We've tried to de-mystify and de-buzzwordify (if that's a word) what that actually means during this event so far.

In this session, we'll hear from cross-industry innovators how they have been fostering a culture of innovation (long before it became popular). It will be a conversation, so do bring your tips and tops as well as any challenges and questions.

About the speaker

Hanna is a creative systems-thinker, a visual storyteller, and most of all, an agent of change. She helps organizations build a culture of creativity and innovation by designing human-centered, thoughtful experiences that challenge everyday thinking. Today, Hanna is an intrapreneur at VMware as Head of Innovation Culture and Communications Strategy within the Office of the CTO. She brings a culture-driven approach to marcom — crafting intentional brand narratives and sharing stories of the innovator’s journey. She also re-imagines large-scale innovation programs that connect people and ideas to cultivate an innovative global community that generates disruptive products and services. Growing up in a family business selling electronics and repairing Sony Walkmans as a hobby, Hanna followed her passion in technology, achieving bachelor’s degrees in Computer Science and Economics. She then also completed her master’s degree in Biomedical Engineering. Hanna is currently a mentor at Project Invent as a Pitch Coach for young, aspiring entrepreneurs.

Born in Vietnam and currently residing in the United States, Hao is an experience junkie. He has worked across the United States, Europe and Southeast Asia in the retail, financial services sector, energy segment, extreme sports arena and entertainment industry performing various roles such as an innovation evangelist, financial auditor, product owner and his favorite job, as a professional skateboarder. Currently Hao is passionate about nurturing his creative confidence and utilizing innovation to solve complex issues. He is spearheading initiatives to transform traditional organizations into innovation powerhouses. Additionally, Hao started two non-profits focused on helping students and non-techies nurture their creative skills, spark their innovative fire and prepare them for the digital economy.

Michael McCathren is a 30-year restaurant veteran whose experience includes Operations, Supply Chain, Finance and Marketing responsibilities in the quick casual and fast-food segments. He has worked and consulted for companies including la Madeleine French Bakery & Cafes, Kmart, Applebee's, Genghis Grill, Huber Industries and Operation Mobilization. Michael joined Chick-fil-A eighteen years ago as a regional marketing consultant, then later in 2008, established the company’s Interactive Digital Marketing group. In that role, Michael was responsible for all consumer-facing digital communications, websites, social media strategies, online customer relationships, mobile strategies, retail gift card program as well as local and market-level digital marketing consulting services available to Chick-fil-A franchisees.

In 2015, Michael was selected to lead one of three long-term business priorities for Chick-fil-A – growing the breakfast daypart. In this role, he brought a brand management approach to cross functional collaboration in order to align craveable menu offerings with convenience strategies, as well as media and messaging tactics designed to triple unaided awareness by 2020. Michael currently leads Enterprise Innovation in the Innovation & New Ventures group at Chick-fil-A where he and his team are responsible for helping the organization transform its ideas into business value. He has created an innovation ecosystem in a decentralized environment that includes identifying external disruptions and opportunities, providing internal consulting services, and overseeing a 37,000 sq ft innovation center.

In addition, Michael is an adjunct professor in the Terry College of Business, University of Georgia, teaching Innovation Management in the Professional MBA program, holds a Master of Science degree in Innovation from Northeastern University in Boston, and is the author of 6Ps of Essential Innovation: Creating the Culture and Capabilities of a Resilient Innovation Organization, available Summer 2022.

Would you like to join this session?

You can get your Innov8rs Connect pass here, or apply to become a member of Innov8rs Community here. Contact us for any help.