As chronicled here on MNB, I had the opportunity last week to participate in a special Retail Tomorrow "immersion" that was sponsored by the California Grocers Association (CGA) as part of a meeting of its board of directors. It was a terrific day - filled with thought-provoking, out-of-the-box sessions that were curated by Mark Ciccone, the former Procter & Gamble executive who has been spearheading the Retail Tomorrow initiative since its founding.
Our view of tomorrow encompassed a number of experiences. We visited a vertical farm. Spent time discussing supply chain issues at the Port of Oakland. Got relevant retail lessons from Dave Kaval, the former president of the San Jose Earthquakes and current president of the Oakland Athletics. (Kudos to CGA and its members for taking the time and making the effort to embark on a day of illumination and provocation.)
We wrapped up the day on the campus of Santa Clara University, where I engaged in a discussion of "The Workforce of the Future" with Kyle Mayer, chair of the Management & Organization Department at the University of Southern California (USC). Our conversation was wide ranging - we chatted about the best ways in which to find and retain employees … the unique bifurcated nature of retail workforces, divided between headquarters and stores … the need for greater entrepreneurialism at retail … how the workforce of the future may require a new c-suite of the future … and how cultures of caring will carry the day in future organizations.
The good news is that we recorded it as an audio podcast, which you can listen to by clicking below, and also can download it to whatever platform you use access the podcast universe. I hope you enjoy our conversation, and that it sparks discussions within your organization.