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20 May, Monday
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The library of essays of Proakatemia

Nordic Business Forum 2023 Day 1



Kirjoittanut: Flóra Lang - tiimistä SYNTRE.

Esseen tyyppi: Yksilöessee / 2 esseepistettä.
Esseen arvioitu lukuaika on 5 minuuttia.

(NBF= Nordic Business Forum)

Introduction

Nordic Business Forum 2023 has come and gone, leaving us with new thoughts, questions, and knowledge. I had the privilege to not only watch the speakers but to watch them live, although just from the stream. I was also lucky enough to watch all of them within the days of the event, except for one (Amy Webb), who I re-watched after the forum had ended. In the following lines, I am going to share my thoughts and opinions about each keynote.

 

  1. Patrick Lencioni

Patrick Lencioni is an entrepreneur and author. One of his most popular books should be The Five Dysfunctions of a Team and his most recent one is titled The 6 Types of Working Genius. In his speech, he included elements from both books while adding real-life examples using his experience and knowledge of the topics. His speech first focused on individuals and he then reflected on teams and teamwork in general.

I personally learned to like his style along the way of listening. The topic was easy to follow as it easily translated to the life of Proakatemia’s fundamental methods and practices, however, Lencioni as a speaker had a very different style from what is considered ordinary in Finland. He was very open and verbal with his views and beliefs and spoke fast and loudly. Overall, as the speech was going on and I got used to his style, I got to enjoy him more and more both as a speaker and a professional.

The biggest take-away from his speech was that I really need to read his books (at least those 2) and that however much you think you know about teamwork, there is something new to be learned every day.

  1. Jos de Blok

Jos de Blok is a Dutch nurse, entrepreneur, and CEO of an organization called Buurtzorg. At Buurtzorg they provide at-home healthcare on community levels. His organization is known for the team’s self-organized work, where there are no managers and an almost non-existent hierarchy to get rid of as many layers and with that bureaucracy, as possible. In his speech, he implemented elements of his organization and went deep into some topics such as how self-organized teams work.

His talk was interesting and especially thought-provoking as it came right after Lencioni’s, who although is considered to be a teamwork guru, represents a more conventional ideal on teams. However, somehow I was missing something. To me to better understand de Blok’s speech and the way his firm works I needed some more background information than what he provided during the forum. This is why I decided to look more into it by watching a TedxTalk he gave in 2015 and became fonder of him and his courage to try something atypical. Having a second look at his presentation and speaking style created this bridge in my head between the 2 talks.

The biggest learning from his talk was a reminder of trust and how we can manage ourselves on a bigger scale. I also took note of how a similar system could be converted onto different fields and industries.

  1. Rebecca Henderson

Rebecca Henderson is an author, economist, and professor at Harvard Business School. Her most popular book, on which her keynote was also based on is called Reimagining Capitalism in a World on Fire. In my mind, her speech was well built up into 2 parts, between which the audience had a couple of minutes to discuss. The first part provided facts and it was a bit frightening, looking at climate change and the economy connected to climate change. The second part was more hopeful, bringing up inventions, companies, and governments that are already doing something huge. The talk, as her background was lecture-like. It had a substantial number of examples and theories but it was also empowering to listen and think about how individuals can take part in such a big topic. I liked how clearly, she was talking, using synonyms and a more universal accent. Just like many speakers during NBF, her speech, and her topic were good enough for the introduction of her book for me to want to read it.

A takeaway from her speech was hope and staying hopeful and positive while working for a better tomorrow.

  1. Maryna Saprykina

Maryna Saprykina was the winner of the Speaker Contest 2023 of NBF. She is a Ukrainian businessperson with past experiences in sustainability and most recently the founder of Ukrainian Women Entrepreneurs Hub, an organization set out the support women to start working as entrepreneurs. Her speech was about resilience, reflecting on her life during the Russian attack on Ukraine. She brought up a lot of examples from her homeland pointing towards the resilience of the people. Saprykina introduced the Resilient Train to Victory, a 5-element model, using a train as a metaphor. The carts were representing

I found her speech easy to follow and understand. Although her topics weren’t as complicated and scientific, there was a lot of passion that made her and what she was talking about interesting and likable.

I really enjoyed the train model and thinking of my own reactions in case of an emergency. I was also encouraged by her to look into some statistics on the changes in Ukrainian entrepreneurship and business life since the war started.

  1. Mo Gawdat

Mo Gawdat is a serial entrepreneur and author. He has worked at IBM, Microsoft, and Google X amongst many. He came to Helsinki to talk about AI from a very basic point of view, building it up from a scientific into a social topic. Personally, his speech was one of my favorites and I highly recommend it to everyone who wants to learn about both the threats and the opportunities that AI poses. He talked very clearly and understandably while explaining difficult topics with relative ease.

Although it came up more in the later speeches, he was the one who first introduced to me, the imminent need for regulation that should come with AI.

  1. Scott Galloway

Scott Galloway is a professor at NYU, entrepreneur, and author, his most recent book Adrift: America in the 100 Charts has made it to the New York Time best-seller list. His talk was about AI relative to the economy, economic trends, and technological trends. This speech was also one of my favorites. It was dynamic, and fast-paced but still clear if one has basic knowledge of economics and world news in general.

I specifically found interesting his relative comparison of corporate tax rates to innovation.

 

Conclusion

Day 1 of NBF was great in my opinion, including all other interviews and discussions that I didn’t mention. I believe this was a very good first day for Nordic Business Forum 2023. I have added a lot of new books to my to-read list and learned new things about teamwork, leadership, and AI. In my next essay, I review day 2 of the forum.

 

References:

de Blok, J. 2015. Healthcare: Humanity Above Bureaucracy. Key-note presentation. TEDxGeneva. Uploaded on 22.5.2015. Geneva

de Blok, J. 2023. How to Create a Striving Organization Without Administrative Burden. Key-note presentation. Nordic Business Forum on 27.-28.9.2023. Seminar. Helsinki

Galloway, S. 2023. Unpacking the AI Burst and Current Market Conditions. Key-note presentation. Nordic Business Forum on 27.-28.9.2023. Seminar. Helsinki

Gawdat, M. 2023. AI Today, Tomorrow and How You Can Save Our World. Key-note speaker. Nordic Business Forum on 27.-28.9.2023. Seminar. Helsinki

Henderson, R. 2023. Reimagining Capitalism in a World on Fire. Key-note presentation. Nordic Business Forum on 27.-28.9.2023. Seminar. Helsinki.

Lencioni, P. 2023. Teamwork Simplified. Key-note presentation. Nordic Business Forum on 27.-28.9.2023. Seminar. Helsinki

Saprykina, M. 2023. Ukrainian Grit: Empowering Global Business with Extreme Resilience. Key-note presentation. Nordic Business Forum on 27.-28.9.2023. Seminar. Helsinki

nbforum.com/nbf2023

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