2020 Executive Talk Guest Speakers’ Business Advice

2020 brought us challenging times which made us transform the way business education is delivered and how the business community got together for sharing experiences and know-how. More than ever, we need to become skilled in creative problem-solving. Being guided by our mission, we share with you the insights from the 14 guest speakers we had this year, during our Executive Talks sessions and webinars, as a way of giving something back and connecting the business community with global ideas. Check out the link for each talk to find details on the speaker and the main ideas of the talk.


Executive Talk - The Marketing Mindset: 10 principles to Understand the Fundamental Role of Marketing in Business. Special guest: Doru Şupeală

“In a fast-changing labor market that drives value from creativity, the corporate employer brand becomes a strategic element in attracting and retaining talent and thus in reaching a higher business performance. To attract top talent, companies need to reach the status of Employer of Choice, a status built on a modern and inclusive culture that draws on collaboration, empathy, democratization, increasing level of freedom for employees and commitment to sustainable development.” - Doru Şupeală, Managing Partner at Scoala SPOR & alumnus EMBA University of Hull.

If you want to read more about this, we recommend one of Doru Şupeală’s recent articles: "Inspire to hire and win the war for talents " published in Marketing - from Information to Decision Journal, DeGruyter, Berlin. 


Executive Talk: Systemic Factors Influencing the Life of an Innovative Organisation. Special Guest: Ligia Cremene 

We talked about the life of organisations, the way they live and die, just like people. We analyzed a few epics fails and looked at the difference between deterministic and complex systems, and how we need to shift our mindset to make decisions in the new interconnected paradigm.
"Companies have a life of their own. They live and they die, just like people. Sometimes they thrive, other times they merely survive. You can tell the state of an organization by looking at the symptoms: delays, conflicts, burnout, lack of direction, not achieving goals, running in circles, avoiding growth, etc. 
Systemic leaders know how to look at the symptoms and how to listen to the organization they are part of, even before the symptoms manifest. They recognize that today’s problems are yesterday’s solutions and constantly grow and develop from that in full contact with reality.
Systemic leadership builds organizational fitness.
The systemic leader knows how to:
- look at systems: systems thinking, systemic perception, interconnectedness
- balance the need for short-term performance with the imperative of long-term strategic planning to transform their business – dynamic strategy
- reinvent/make the little bets that can change the course of an organization/ how to survive or when to die?
- to be in contact with reality and with the market forces/focus on context
- zoom in, zoom out, use design thinking, flexible mindset 
- what to include what to exclude and when/ is pro-active." - Ligia Cremene, Organisational Development Consultant, Transformational Coach & Therapist.
Check out the presentation on our youtube channel.  

Hull University Special Webinars - Mergers and Acquisitions

“Economic crises are putting pressure on companies willing to engage in mergers and acquisitions. These pressures can often push them to act based on reactive rather proactive strategies. In this respect, the art of strategic planning consisting in formulating strategies, implementing and evaluating their impact often leads to better results than reactive strategies based on following the best market timing.” - Special guest: Aurel Bernat, CEO of BT Asset Management and alumnus of the EMBA University of Hull.


Executive Talk on Performances are built with People

“Before putting anything first, companies should build healthy working environments. A company that aims to create prosperity for its customers and the wider society should also be able to create prosperity for its employees. The prosperity which is no longer measurable through material rewards but with an overarching sense of purpose, security, and wellbeing.” - Antoneta Galeş, Solution-focused Coach, art-therapist Phronetik and Mental Health Facilitator Trainer. If you want to know more about this, you can follow Antoneta’s work on https://www.antonetagales.ro/


Executive Talk on Complex Infrastructure Management

“Complex systems thinking is crucial in understanding the impact of large road infrastructure on the welfare and wellbeing of local communities and how quality infrastructure can contribute to a better living environment and sustainable development.” – Prof. Terri Harrington, the Sponsorship Director for the Complex Infrastructure Programme, Highways EnglandFind more on Terri’s work here: www.bettergovprojects.com.


Executive Talk on Managing Change in Cross-Cultural Settings

Throughout the two meetings, Diana AU Yeung (HR consultant in the banking and retail sector across the Asia-Pacific region and alumni of Hull University Executive MBA delivered in Hong Kong) walked us through her experience as the head of talent development and training initiatives for companies such as Peninsula Hotels and Hugo Boss in the APAC region, illustrating how developing a culture of shared values and mission can lead to the development of strong and committed teams even in a diverse cultural setting and a fast-evolving environment such as the luxury brands market. Diana Au Yeung has over 19 years of HR management, talent development, regional training, and consultancy experience across sectors in banking, hospitality, luxury retail, energy, construction, and property industries. She lives in Hong Kong and worked in Beijing and Shanghai.

Read more about Diana Au Yeung’s Executive Talks here:

Managing Change Peninsula Hotels

Managing Change Hugo Boss


Executive Talk on Entrepreneurial Municipalities

“In the upcoming decade, the entrepreneurial municipality of Cluj-Napoca should not only be actively supporting the creation of a research and development ecosystem which connects the academic and the IT & C sector but should also be contributing the development of mechanisms and instruments that would enable the community to become resilient and adaptive in front of the climate changes that will change the world as we know it.” - Cornel Ban, Associate Professor of International Political Economy at the Copenhagen Business School. For more information about entrepreneurial municipalities read Cornel Ban’s article on dependent development


Executive Talk on Storytelling

In this talk David Collins, Professor in Management at the University of Northumbria, Newcastle and the founder and Managing Director of Gain Insight Ltd, argues that the accounts of organizational culture prepared for managers offer a limited appreciation of the ways in which people think, feel and act, and suggests storytelling as a means of redeeming our understanding of all cultural matters. His most recent publication - The Organizational Storytelling Workbook will enrich managers and professionals with interactive features to walk practically through the process of improving their storytelling skills, including practical exercises, contemplative questions, and space to respond creatively to the state-of-the art ideas of storytelling. This Executive Talk has been a start to anyone who wants to practice and learn these skills and this workbook is the perfect companion to any executive or postgraduate course in storytelling as well as a useful and enjoyable companion to any individual manager that wishes to improve their ability and capacity for meaningful storytelling.

For more information watch the recording of the Executive Talk on our youtube channel.


Executive Talk on Talent Acquisition in the Digital Age

“Automation and digitalization already have an impact on the HR industry and the Talent Acquisition processes. Algorithms are transforming the recruitment processes through personality and ability tests, social media screening, gamification incorporated in various assessments, and AI tools – indicating the trends and the processes that will become the new norm in this domain.” - Radu Panait, Group HR Director @E-INFRA. For more information about the Talent Acquisition in the Digital Age watch the recording of the Executive Talk on youtube.


Executive Talk on DAC6

“DAC6 will have a significant impact on the field of taxation in the EU member countries and their economic partners. Romania makes no exception and will have to adapt its legislation and norms to this new directive which regulates the mandatory automatic exchange of information in the field of taxation in relation to reportable cross-border arrangements.” - Andrada Goriță, Tax Manager within the Financial Services department, and Ionuț Măstăcăneanu, the leader of the Financial Services Team within the Tax department at KPMG. For more information about DAC6 watch the recording of the Executive Talk on youtube. 


Executive Talk on Charisma

“Charisma can function as a great force for good, but it also possesses a dark side. Companies led by charismatic CEO's consistently underperformed those that are led by their non-charismatic counterparts. Applying theory to current business scenarios and encouraging employees to evaluate the presence and value of the charismatic forces that surround them can prevent companies from downslide towards a destructive corporate culture.” – Elesa Zehndorfer, PhD., Research Officer for British Mensa and writer.

For more information about the typologies of charisma and the tools employed to analyse it watch the recording of the Executive Talk on our youtube channel. 


Executive Talk on Improving Business Performance – Operations and Supply Chain Drivers

“Efficiency and productivity should not be driven simply out of cost reduction and maximizing output but rather from intelligently and carefully designed operations and supply chain processes. In this sense, the adoption of 4.0 industry features can help companies build a safer and more inspiring working environment, attain productivity growth, develop a more flexible and environmentally friendly production process, and achieve better business performances. These changes and transformations should not be seen as threats but rather as opportunities. And Romania can drive enormous benefits from automation and digitization that would change the way businesses capture and produce value and the position where Romanian companies sit in the global business architecture.” - Bogdan Sterescu, QHSE Director FCV Europe, at Emerson and Executive MBA University of Hull alumnus.

The recording of the presentation is available on our youtube channel.