“From Surviving to Thriving” was the theme of the fourth and final British Chamber of Commerce for Luxembourg breakfast workshop in 2018 run by the chamber’s People & Leadership group, and facilitated by Donald Venkatapen and Sarah Battey at the premises of Badenoch & Clark on Wednesday.
Joanna Denton, chair of the British Chamber of Commerce, introduced the session with warm words of welcome, and a festive seasonal spirit was ensured with mince pies and Christmas guitar music.
The BCC then welcomed Bob Kneip, founder and chairman of Kneip, as their guest speaker, giving the participants valuable insights into his experience with managing change at his organisation.
Bob described key challenges that he and his business faced with the advent of digitalisation, which he humorously described as “not cool” for his business at the time.
Participants were then invited to put themselves in the CEO’s shoes and brainstorm ideas for strategically addressing the issues as well as considering practical implementation questions.
After a lively discussion and sharing of participants’ ideas, Bob explained how he had proceeded, taking some difficult decisions and challenging his own perspective along the way with “disrupt yourself” being a key success factor.
Other valuable advice included listening to the customer at all times as “they will tell you what you need to know” and really caring about their needs. Hiring talent with digitalisation expertise and engaging the existing team were further measures that were crucial to his business transformation. Last but not least, introducing an “agile” and short-term approach to problem-solving enabled Bob, his team and his business to thrive in the new environment.
Participants said they appreciated the open and honest conversation and left the session with plenty of insights into how leaders can manage change successfully in challenging times.