Featured Speakers


Hosted by Managing Director Global Professional Development, Michael Phillips, the Stage-Gate Innovation Summit is packed with engaging keynotes and provocative discussions from a special team of Senior Business Leaders. This year’s high-powered roster of speakers includes:

Dr. Ron Adner

Dr. Ron Adner

Tuck School of Business - Dartmouth College | Professor of Strategy and Entrepreneurship

Innovation is a key priority in every company today. But there is a big difference between investing in innovation and achieving successful innovation. And this gap has grown wider over the past decade.

As strategies have shifted towards leveraging collaboration – both within and across firms – to drive new profitable growth, they have simultaneously raised a new set of challenges that come from increasing interdependence across projects, promises, and investments. For this reason, beyond commitment to innovation, it is critical that everyone across the organization has a clear understanding of how they fit into the bigger picture.

In this session, I will introduce the “Wide Lens” approach to seeing the bigger picture. This new perspective will change how you prioritize opportunities, commit resources, and manage our organizations. You will see and learn how to build strategies that are tailored to the challenges of your specific ecosystem and dramatically improve your odds of success.

Wide Lens in Practice: Implementing Ecosystem Strategy

This session will explore what it really means to develop and implement a holistic approach to innovation strategy in complex organizations. A distinguished panel of executives will share their own experiences in leading Wide Lens transformations within their companies, focusing on process, alignment, and outcomes. A key theme will be how to prepare the internal corporate ecosystem for implementing strategies that reshape the external commercial ecosystem.

Ron Adner is The David T. McLaughlin Chaired Professor and Professor of Strategy and Entrepreneurship at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College. Prior to joining Tuck, he was the Akzo-Nobel Fellow of Strategic Management at INSEAD, where he served on the faculty for ten years.

Dr. Adner’s award winning research introduces a new perspective on the relationship between firms, customers, and the broader ‘innovation ecosystems’ in which they interact to create value.

His book, The Wide Lens: What Successful Innovators See that Others Miss, has been heralded as a path-breaking guide to successful innovation in an interdependent world. Among other honors, it was named a Best Business Book of the Year by Strategy+Business, and selected as finalist for the prestigious Terry Book Award by the Academy of Management.

Dr. Adner’s work is a rare convergence of rigorous academic research, profound managerial insights, and practical, powerful frameworks. Applied, tested, and validated in some of the world’s leading companies, his ‘Wide Lens’ approach to seeing the bigger strategy picture has been transformative in driving effective innovation in both the corporate and social sectors.

He is the founder and CEO of the Strategy Insight Group. He is a keynote speaker, consultant, and advisor to companies around the world. His engagements have transformed strategy at Fortune 500 firms as well as at entrepreneurial startups He is an accomplished teacher and a six-time recipient of the annual, student-determined, Award for Teaching Excellence at both Tuck and INSEAD.

Dr. Adner’s research has been published in leading academic journals including Management Science, Organization Science, Strategic Management Journal, Rand Journal of Economics, Academy of Management Review, and in edited book chapters. His managerial articles have been published in numerous outlets including the Harvard Business Review, MIT/Sloan Management Review, The Atlantic, Fast Company, Forbes, Wired, The Financial Times, and the Wall Street Journal.

He holds a PhD and an MA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, as well as master's and bachelor's degrees in mechanical engineering from the Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art.

Eric Quint

Eric Quint

3M | Chief Design Officer

Across businesses, communities, and technologies, one aspect remains constant in our connected world: change is ever-present. We know design can deliver competitive advantage, but how can we harness collaborative creativity to take this one step further, driving value, stimulating growth, and enhancing customer experiences?

Global enterprises are often large and complex and recognize the role of creativity and design as an opportunity to become more relevant, build audience engagement and drive transformation into the future. Eric Quint, Chief Design Officer of 3M Company, will share thoughts on how design can create competitive advantage and positive change; and will lend valuable insights into the challenges that we all face as strategists, creative professionals, and change-makers, as we work to drive innovation and enhance brand experiences…by design.

Eric Quint joined 3M in 2013 as Chief Design Officer to lead the design function as a vital competitive platform for the company. With more than 25 years of global design experience including a distinguished career at Royal Philips, Eric brings extensive design leadership in building and managing multi-disciplinary creative teams to drive brand and innovation forward. As a recognized design industry leader and passionate about design thinking and the opportunity to make positive impact on the future of 3M, its business partners and customers, Eric’s focus on bringing design to the heart of the company remains his top priority. Since joining 3M, he initiated and successfully implemented a new corporate brand identity, designed and realized a state-of-the-art design center at the company headquarters and received over 75 international design awards with the global 3M Design team.

Eric studied industrial design at the Design Academy Eindhoven in the Netherlands and holds a degree in mechanical/industrial engineering. He is on the Advisory Board of the Design Management Institute, is a member of the Industrial Designers Society of America and a fellow of the World 50 Innovation. Eric can often be found speaking and lecturing at international events for design, business and academia on a variety of topics related to design thinking, innovation, branding and design management.

Company Description:

3M is a global science company that never stops inventing. Using 46 technology platforms, our integrated team of scientists and researchers works with customers to create breakthroughs. Our inventions have improved daily life for hundreds of millions of people all over the world. With $30 billion in sales, our 90,000 employees connect with customers all around the world. Scientists, researchers and marketers work across countries and across subjects to solve challenges big and small.

Trevor Smith

Trevor Smith

Commscope | Vice President of Global Strategy and Business Development

Wide Lens in Practice: Implementing Ecosystem Strategy

This session will explore what it really means to develop and implement a holistic approach to innovation strategy in complex organizations. A distinguished panel of executives will share their own experiences in leading Wide Lens transformations within their companies, focusing on process, alignment, and outcomes. A key theme will be how to prepare the internal corporate ecosystem for implementing strategies that reshape the external commercial ecosystem.

Trevor Smith is the Vice President, Global Strategy and Business Development for Commscope, and is part of the Office of the CTO.    Trevor and his team are responsible for establishing and driving the Commscope strategic plan collaboratively across the organization, and for developing processes that individual businesses can use to formulate their strategies.  Trevor and team work closely with Customers and Industry Partners to assess current and future industry trends, and drive Commscope and the industry towards solutions that enable a connected lifestyle by transforming networks to optimize network performance and deployment speed. 

Trevor is passionate about fiber and wireless technologies and holds over 100 patents relating to fiber optics and fiber optic networks.  He has spent time in various R&D, Product Management, Marketing, and Business Development Roles.  Most recently, Trevor and his team have been working on solutions for FTTH and Wireless Networks, driving convergence and speed of deployment up, while also working to lower both capex and opex costs for Commscope customers. 

In addition to his role at Commscope, Trevor serves on the Board of Directors of Telecommunications Industry Association.  Trevor has a BSME and an MBA to go along with over twenty-four years of experience in the Telecom industry and has spent time leading customer teams focused in Spain, Australia, South America, and in the US market.

Jim Euchner

Jim Euchner

Former Vice President of Global Innovation, Goodyear

Successful innovation starts with the customer. Meeting the needs of the customer, however, may lead you to business models that don't match the dominant model of your company. The choice is critical: the business model you choose can dramatically influence the value capture you realize for your innovation. In this talk, I will share a gated process for moving from customer insight to launched business for innovation that creates new revenue streams and new business models. The process is designed to encourage rapid iteration and experimentation within a phase, but to converge on distinct deliverables. I will focus, in particular, on the use of disciplined business experiments to understand and reduce risk. As part of this, I will discuss the risk of working with new ecosystem partners – what Ron Adner calls co-innovation partners and adoption chain partners.

Wide Lens in Practice: Implementing Ecosystem Strategy

This session will explore what it really means to develop and implement a holistic approach to innovation strategy in complex organizations. A distinguished panel of executives will share their own experiences in leading Wide Lens transformations within their companies, focusing on process, alignment, and outcomes. A key theme will be how to prepare the internal corporate ecosystem for implementing strategies that reshape the external commercial ecosystem.

Jim Euchner is Honorary Professor at Aston Business School (UK) and Editor in Chief of Research-Technology Management, a peer-reviewed journal for practitioners of innovation, technology and research management. He was previously Vice President of Global Innovation at Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company, where he led the development of new businesses and helped launch five businesses on three continents. Prior to his work at Goodyear, Jim held positions as Vice President of Growth Strategy and Innovation at Pitney Bowes, Inc. and Vice President, Network Systems Advanced Technology at Bell Atlantic. He is particularly interested in the use of lean startup approaches in large organizations and the challenges manufacturers confront in moving to services-led business models.

Jim is industry co-chair of the Aston Advanced Services Partnership and a member of the Scientific Advisory Council for the Nissan Autonomous Vehicle program. He is also a co-founder of the MIT Innovation Laboratory, a consortium to nurture innovation in organizations. Jim has published and spoken extensively on innovation and technology management.

Jim received his Bachelor of Science degree from Cornell University in mechanical and aerospace engineering and his Masters from Princeton University, where he was a Guggenheim Fellow. He also holds an MBA from Southern Methodist University.

Company Description

Goodyear is one of the world’s largest tire companies. It employs approximately 65,000 people and manufactures its products in 47 facilities in 21 countries around the world. Its two Innovation Centers in Akron, Ohio and Colmar-Berg, Luxembourg strive to develop state-of-the-art products and services that set the technology and performance standard for the industry.

Stanley Roberts

Stanley Roberts

Former Vice President of Engineering Excellence, Project Management, Ingersoll Rand

Standard work and processes are important factors in enabling flawless execution. However, repeatable innovation can only be obtained and sustained through an organization's people. Culture is the key differentiator between companies that develop the ability to continuously deliver on their promises to their customers.

But how do you implement standard work and processes that enable a culture change that influences every employee to stay aligned to the business strategy for growth? The X-Factor: discipline!!!

Key areas to be covered in this presentation include:

  • The Strategic Project Management Office
  • How to build Project and Portfolio Management Capability
  • Making data driven strategic decisions
  • Results

Stan Roberts has over 20 years successfully managing people, new product development, programs and projects, transforming organizations, and capturing and maintaining multimillion-dollar business wins that added value to companies across a broad array of industries. Previous roles:

  • VP, Engineering Excellence and Project Management – Ingersoll Rand
  • GM, Government and Commercial Systems Programs - Rockwell Collins
  • GM, Line and Hangar Maintenance Operations – United Airlines

Stan was the recipient of Diversity Inc. Top 100 Under 50 Emerging Leaders in 2015 and Awarded Patriotic Employer from the Office of the Navy in 2016. Stan's early career highlights include aircraft master maintenance mechanic, FAA engine shop repair and overhaul, Teleflex Manufacturing and avionics engineer.

About Stan's use of Stage-Gate®

Stan Roberts has spent the last 15 years implementing Stage-Gate as the preferred method for managing projects and building project management capability at multiple companies. Culture change and continuous improvement start with the baseline of standard work and builds the ability to make data driven decisions to manage a portfolio of projects. This ability creates an environment where employees stay aligned to a growth strategy and innovation becomes repeatable.

Company Bio:

Ingersoll Rand (NYSE:IR) advances the quality of life by creating comfortable, sustainable and efficient environments. Our people and our family of brands—including Club Car®, Ingersoll Rand®, Thermo King® and Trane®—work together to enhance the quality and comfort of air in homes and buildings; transport and protect food and perishables; and increase industrial productivity and efficiency. We are a $13 billion global business committed to a world of sustainable progress and enduring results.

Guruprasad P. Bandekar

Guruprasad P. Bandekar

JLG Industries | Vice President, Global Engineering, Product Development and Management

Wide Lens in Practice: Implementing Ecosystem Strategy

This session will explore what it really means to develop and implement a holistic approach to innovation strategy in complex organizations. A distinguished panel of executives will share their own experiences in leading Wide Lens transformations within their companies, focusing on process, alignment, and outcomes. A key theme will be how to prepare the internal corporate ecosystem for implementing strategies that reshape the external commercial ecosystem.

Guruprasad P. Bandekar works for Oshkosh’s Access Equipment segment, JLG Industries, Inc.  Mr. Bandekar is the Vice President, Global Engineering, Product Development and Management.  Mr. Bandekar has responsibility for all aspects of global engineering, product development and management areas. Most recently, Mr. Bandekar served as Vice President, Global Procurement and Supply Chain at JLG industries, and Vice President, Engineering for McNeilus.

Prior to joining Oshkosh’s team, Mr. Bandekar worked at Boston Scientific Corporation, a leading medical device company in various engineering and finance roles.

Mr. Bandekar received his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from B.A. Technological University in India, and a master’s degree in Industrial and Mechanical engineering from the University of Toledo and an MBA in Finance from the University of Minnesota.

Company Description

JLG Industries, Inc. has been earning customer confidence and trust through innovation since 1969. Our customers are our greatest priority, and we remain steadfast in our commitment to understanding their challenges.

As the world’s leading designer and manufacturer of access equipment, JLG products and personnel can be found all over the world, going above and beyond to support customers. We deliver the powerful, versatile equipment they need along with unsurpassed training and service, because we have a responsibility to be more than a manufacturing company. We are a partner in our customer’s success, reaching out worldwide to enable performance, boost productivity, ensure uptime and support forward progress.

Raquel Melo

Raquel Melo

Land O’Lakes Inc. | Vice President of Innovation and New Business Development

Land O'Lakes dared to do what many firms resist, and what Jim Collins noted was key to growth and sustainability, and that was to recognize that good is the enemy of great. Land O'Lakes had all the pieces that typically underpin success-- a dedicated innovation team, a well designed and implemented Stage-Gate process, clear innovation strategy and a culture that supported innovation. But while results were good, leadership knew there was an opportunity to achieve even better outcomes. So, began an innovation journey that would enable a good organization to become an even better one.

What Raquel Melo and her team learned on their journey was that using an innovation ecosystem approach, built on a foundation of strategy, with checks and balances in place to ensure and safeguard alignment, a much higher level of performance could be achieved. Land O'Lakes is now achieving more with less and if you review the firm's portfolio you see why. Where as in the past many smaller, less exciting and profitable projects made up much of the portfolio, now the firm is focused on evaluating, validating and commercializing far fewer but much larger projects. This has resulted in greater decision making efficiency and effectiveness thanks to a new Stage-Gate and Portfolio Management approach and paradigm. Clearly a good to a great story that needs to be told and that will have delegates leaving with the following four key takeaways and learnings.

  • Start with a clear understanding and alignment on strategy and portfolio roles
  • Require clarity on goals, hurdles, deliverables and decisions makers
  • Have streamlined and efficient tools and process for managing individual projects and a portfolio of projects
  • Have metrics to ensure making progress towards your goals

Raquel Melo is Vice President of Innovation and New Business Development at Land O’Lakes Inc., a $14B farmer-owned agri-business cooperative based in Arden Hills, Minnesota in the United States, where she is responsible for driving growth strategy, innovation, and new business development efforts including acquisition growth strategies.

Raquel has held Director of Marketing and Director of Innovation roles with Kemps LLC, HP Hood, and Dairy Farmers of America (DFA). She began her Marketing Career at General Mills, Inc.

She is currently the Vice-Chair of The Brand Lab, a non-profit organization dedicated to expanding access to marketing careers for under-privileged young people.

Raquel holds an MBA from Harvard Business School. A native Spanish speaker, she was born in The Dominican Republic and grew up in New York City.

Company Description

Land O'Lakes, Inc., one of America's premier agribusiness and food companies, is a member-owned cooperative with industry-leading operations that span the spectrum from agricultural production to consumer foods. With 2016 annual sales of $13 billion, Land O'Lakes is one of the nation's largest cooperatives, ranking 209 on the Fortune 500. Building on a legacy of more than 96 years of operation, Land O'Lakes today operates some of the most respected brands in agribusiness and food production including LAND O LAKES® Dairy Foods, Purina Animal Nutrition, WinField United and Land O’Lakes SUSTAIN. The company does business in all 50 states and more than 60 countries. Land O'Lakes, Inc. corporate headquarters are located in Arden Hills, Minn.

Laura Marino

Laura Marino

MOVE Guides | Vice President of Product Management

Whether you are part of a young, fast-growing company or lead a group responsible for developing new products within a large organization, a key challenge, after initial success, is how to maintain innovation while ensuring sustainable growth. Strategies that helped achieve initial success will not get you to the next stage.

Deriving lessons from actual experience with young and established B2B companies, this session discusses how to position product organizations to successfully scale up. It looks at the natural evolution of the products and the product/engineering teams in a startup, the risks as the number of customers and product complexity increase, and how to incorporate the right level of process while preserving the culture of innovation. It also discusses the similarities and differences between the challenges faced by young, stand-alone companies and new product development groups within large organizations.

A senior product executive with extensive experience in product management, M&A analysis, and definition of corporate strategies, Laura is passionate about leading product organizations in their successful transition from the start-up stage to the next, high-growth stage. Prior to her current position as VP of Product Management at VC-backed Move Guides, Laura led product teams in small and large organizations including Intapp, Nuance, Tellme Networks (Microsoft subsidiary) and SAP Labs.

In addition to being a regular guest speaker at the Stanford Technology Ventures Program, Laura is a member of the extended teaching team in the Stanford Management Science and Engineering Department, lecturing on entrepreneurship and product management. She serves on the board of Leading Women in Technology a non-profit that unlocks the potential of professionals who advise technology businesses. She is also a member of Hipower.org, which focuses on accelerating women's leadership roles from professional success to wide-ranging significance

Laura earned two Master of Science degrees from Stanford University where she was the recipient of the "Outstanding Academic Performance at the Graduate Level" award.

Company Description:

MOVE Guides powers global business with the first cloud-based software platform designed for the growing mobile workforce. Industry leading companies rely on our Talent Mobility Cloud to deliver their global mobility programs across more than 190 countries with increased operational efficiencies, trusted compliance, and engaging employee experiences. Founded in 2012, MOVE Guides has quickly disrupted the category of global relocation, which was previously known for high fees and a lack of innovation.

MOVE Guides' philanthropic initiative -- Mobility4All -- provides opportunities to those fleeing poverty and conflict by moving to new locations. MOVE Guides has offices in the Americas, EMEA and APAC, and is backed by New Enterprise Associates and Notion Capital.

Sarah Hadfield

Sarah M. Hatfield

OnProcess Technology | Vice President of Product Management & Client Solutions

Launching bold and breakthrough innovations begins with having a collective wisdom and vision to anticipate, evaluate, and validate expected future needs. In a world dealing with the impact of ever accelerating change the challenge is how to stay relevant by developing and launching products that others need and want – yet may not know they need and want – in an ever tightening timeframe.

Successful innovation doesn’t stop there, however. Having ideation teams and product developers who truly understand market drivers, and have the discipline to focus attention on solutions for problems still incubating, and not yet being faced, is critical. It also requires those same teams to assess and have a deep, and authentic understanding of their own organization’s readiness for change. How do you know if your breakthrough product requires an internal cultural transformation in order to be successful when launched?

Knowing what your potential clients may need tomorrow demands truly understanding their ecosystems and the forces that will impact the growth and sustainability of their businesses. This also holds true for your employees and corporate culture. Having this knowledge is critical; yet mostly meaningless if the firm cannot communicate and translate it deep within its product development function, and all the way down to its frontline employees.

Join Sarah Hatfield as she shares her experience and learnings leading product development and product management teams, and the work she is doing to formulate, manage, and transfer innovation strategy into tangible actions to accelerate ideation, evaluation, and validation during the critical front end stages of innovation.

Sarah directs OnProcess' strategy for core service offerings and client solutions, including the OPTvision℠ platform. She brings more than 15 years of leadership expertise from previous roles in supply chain, product and program management for Comcast, Asurion and ADT. Most recently, her focus has been in new product development for managed services with a focus on IoT driven solutions.

Sarah's early career includes active duty service with 25th Infantry Division, US Army. She is a veteran of foreign wars, and recipient of multiple military awards, including the Combat Action Badge.

Company Description

OnProcess Technology is a managed services provider specializing in complex, global service supply chain operations – the flow of people, parts and services following the sale of a product. The company's unique combination of supply chain expertise, technology-driven delivery and continual analytics-based process improvement, enables clients to quickly optimize efficiencies, scale operations, grow revenue and profitability, and deliver superior customer experiences. With particular expertise in technology, broadband, medical, logistics, manufacturing and mobile verticals, OnProcess is relied upon by many of the world's leading companies. OnProcess provides services in 23 languages and operates out of eight global facilities.

Hakan Kostepen

Hakan Kostepen

Panasonic Automotive Systems Company of America | Executive Director – Product Planning Strategy & Innovation

Panasonic Corporation of North America is a leading technology partner, integrator and disruptor to businesses, government agencies and consumers across the region. However, Panasonic still deals with many of the same challenges other companies face – regardless of industry – when it comes to innovation and product development. In a nutshell, it is how to effectively balance being a disruptor while managing disruptions at an ever-increasing speed of change. No easy feat for those leading and executing within the world of innovation and product development…

Plan to join Hakan Kostepen, Executive Director of Product Planning Strategy & Innovation at Panasonic Automotive Systems of Company of America, as he explores with delegates the work he and his team have been doing to confront and take charge of this new reality. Hakan’s presentation will cover the following areas:

  1. Trends,  Disruptions and Speed of Change
  2. Panasonic Silicon Valley Center & Mobilit
  3. Panasonic Silicon Valley Center & 6Ps (People, Process, Product, Platform, Partnerships, Pace)
  4. Challenges & Moving Together

Hakan Kostepen is an Executive Director at Panasonic Silicon Valley Center in Cupertino, CA and responsible for Product Planning Strategy and Innovation for Panasonic Automotive Systems Company of America. Panasonic Automotive Global Product Planning Strategy and Innovation group leads Panasonic Connected LifeStyle Strategy and Innovation Concepts around Panasonic B2B2C touch points around Internet of Things – Connected Car. 

Mr. Kostepen has broad Systems and Software Engineering and Advanced Product Development experience with Panasonic, Ford Motor Company, Visteon, EDS, and US Air Force along with various Automotive Real Time Embedded Systems Applications  and Advanced Automotive Infotainment Systems and Software Development around connected devices.

Gary Gray

Gary Gray

Polaris Industries | Vice President of Product Management

Rapid growth at Polaris Industries through the 1980's and 90's presented many new opportunities, but, also challenges for the firm in its efforts to sustain expansion. Recognizing that innovation was the surest way to achieve its ambitious growth goals, leadership reflected on the approach being followed to bring new products to market and concluded that it lacked the discipline, consistency and conformity necessary to support a company-wide robust and comprehensive product development strategy.

In response, a Stage-Gate idea-to-launch process was designed, implemented and rolled out across the firms different business units in the early 2000's. Continually updated, since, to meet changing innovation ecosystem needs; it has now been in place for almost 15 years and has enabled the firm to not only stay ahead of its competitors but, also to advance and launch "new to firm" and new to world" bold and breakthrough innovations. Most recently it facilitated the evaluation, validation and launch of the firm's game-changing autocycle – The Slingshot. The Slingshot is an open-air 3 wheel motorcycle that is equipped for use on all public roads and has been turning heads and shaking up the industry since its debut in 2014. It has also exceeded well beyond expectations sales forecasts.

Gary Gray was involved with Polaris's initial Stage-Gate design and implementation efforts and since its roll out has been directly involved leading efforts to sustain and update the process as required. He also lead the team charged with taking from concept to evaluation, validation and launch the game changing autocycle – The Slingshot. Drawing upon a case study review of the Slingshot, Gary will share with delegates the unique way that Polaris incubates ideas and then takes them through its Stage-Gate process. It is clear that Polaris has found a very effective way to utilize innovation framework execution best practices. From innovation strategy through to a Stage & Gate approach to concept evaluation and validation, idea nurturing and risk mitigation are carefully managed at Polaris. Gary's presentation will include discussion on the below questions to afford delegates the opportunity to reflect on what changes, and why, they might consider for their NPD frameworks to better facilitate the incubation, evaluation and validation of bold and breakthrough innovations:

  • What were the key factors behind Polaris Industries designing and implementing a Stage-Gate Idea-to-launch process in the early 2000's?
  • How did the firms Stage-Gate process facilitate evaluating, validating and nurturing project Slingshot?
  • How does Polaris know it's time to move an idea from incubation to a more comprehensive Stage-Gate evaluation and validation review?
  • What did the Slingshot project reinforce to Polaris about their approach to pursuing bold and breakthrough innovation?

Gary Gray is the Vice President of Product Management for Polaris Industries, a global powersports company. Gary started at Polaris in Manufacturing Engineering employing lean practices at their largest manufacturing facility. He then joined the newly formed Victory Motorcycle team and designed the Victory V92C, the first production motorcycle for Polaris. After 10 years in Victory Engineering he moved to the Product Manager role for Motorcycles. He started the Slingshot project in 2009 which is an innovative new way to enjoy powersports. Gary was a key member of the Indian Motorcycle acquisition team that acquired the brand in 2011. In 2017 Gary was promoted to Vice President of Motorcycle Product for Indian Motorcycle and Slingshot. He has a Bachelor’s Degree in Engineering from St. Cloud State University and an MBA from the University of St. Thomas.

Company Description

For millions of people around the world, Polaris has become synonymous with adventure and passion, in both work and play. For more than 60 years, we’ve been making high-quality, breakthrough products—whether it’s launching the snowmobile industry, reinventing ATV categories year after year, developing the first purpose-built military vehicles or introducing a radical 3-wheel moto-roadster.

From our entrepreneurial roots as a mechanical shop, we’ve grown into one of the world’s largest Powersports companies. And in recent years, we’ve expanded beyond Powersports into adjacent markets, like commercial and military vehicles, where we can add value. Today, Polaris offers a diverse portfolio of best-in-class brands.

Stephan M. Liozu

Stephan M. Liozu

Thales Group | Chief Value Officer

The pipelines of most organizations are filled with a variety of product types; from cost reductions to “new to you” and/or “new to world” innovations. Each has an important role to play to support the firm’s overall innovation and business strategy. While very different in terms of complexity and risk, each shares a common denominator that pertains to customer value perception. Products that achieve their commercialization objectives do so because they first and foremost meet a customer need and want. In short, they are deemed to be of value . . . based on some unique and very specific value measure that is applied. A measure that is not yours, but, is the property of the value chain member involved. Try as you may to position a new product in its most positive light, if you do not satisfy the different value measures in play, the odds of failure increase substantially.

Few, if any new products, go directly from their point of origination to the user. Most touch other hands along their journey, with each touch point, you need to establish clearly what value they offer the player involved. This raises four very important questions that product developers need to ask and build into their idea-to-launch process. Doing so will ensure that with each new idea that enters the pipeline, a comprehensive CUSTOMER value assessment can be undertaken . . . and EVALUATED early! When innovators fail to ask these questions or execute poorly around their investigation, the opportunity to properly evaluate and POSITION a potential new product or service is lost. When Innovators ask these questions too late in their process, it is all but certain that SCOPE CREEP will arise, REVENUE TARGETS will be missed, and products or services that should never have reached development, will in fact, be launched.

Plan to join Dr. Stephan Liozu as he draws upon years of research and practical experience leading the innovation efforts of some of the globe’s most successful businesses to discuss this topic in greater detail. Stephan’s presentation will enable participants to explore the key concepts of customer value, value-based innovation, quantification of DIFFERENTIATION, value management and to leave with practical tools/techniques to facilitate and address each. If your Stage-Gate or NPD process does not focus your attantion on these concepts, Stephan’s session promises to be of most benefit . . . and value to you!

Stephan M. Liozu is Chief Value Officer of the Thales Group (www.thalesgroup.com) and Chief Marketing Officer of Thales Inc. in the USA. He is also an Adjunct Professor and Research Fellow at the Case Western Research University Weatherhead School of Management. Stephan holds a Ph.D. in Management from Case Western Reserve University (2013), an MS in Innovation Management from Toulouse School of Management (2005), and an MBA in Marketing from Cleveland States University (1991). He is a Certified Pricing Professional (CPP), a Prosci® certified Change Manager, and a Strategyzer Business Model Innovation Coach. Over the past few years, Stephan published academic articles in the Journal of Revenue and Pricing Management, Business Horizons, MIT Sloan Management Review, and Industrial Marketing Management. He has also written several articles on strategic pricing issues for the Journal of Professional Pricing and is a regular presenter at Professional Pricing Society conferences in Europe and North America as well as the Strategic Account Management Association conferences. He authored four books, Value Mindset, (2017), Dollarizing Differentiation Value (2016), The Pricing Journey (2015) and Pricing and Human Capital (2015). He also co-edited three books, Innovation in Pricing – Contemporary Theories and Best Practices (2012) and The ROI of Pricing (2014), and Pricing and the Salesforce (2015).

Company Description

Thales – a global technology leader for the Aerospace, Transport, Defense and Security markets – has over 100 years in the U.S. designing and deploying equipment, systems and services wherever safety and security matter – we deliver.  Together with our U.S. customers we make a difference in the critical environments we serve.

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This event was one of the highest value summits I've ever attended.

- Scott Brown, High Liner Foods Inc.