Workshop Speakers

In addition to the prepared keynote and breakout presentations, this year’s conference will feature all-new interactive workshops led by industry experts for attendees to get ‘hands-on’ with data, shopper insights, shelving, and more. These immersive workshops will allow practitioners to work through real case studies with actual data and insights and have an interactive discussion with their peers. Each 1.5-hour workshop will include an expert facilitator, breakout work time, and collaborative presentation.

Space Planning workshop icon

Space Planning for Non-Space Professionals

The culmination of your category plans converge into “tactics.” But sometimes that just feels like meeting the demands of the planogramming team. This session will provide you with new tools for collaborating with your space planning resources. Whether internal or external, gain new skills to show up ready to achieve your category goals with partnership and buy in. Learn how to create the 2-way street where you get as much as you give.  

Activating an Omnichannel CDT

This session will explore how CDTs (Category Decision Trees) are used today particularly in an omnichannel environment where decisions can be made very differently in brick and mortar stores vs. online for any given category. Participants will work through some mock CDTs and apply the findings to real-life retail scenarios. Leave feeling well equipped to approach future CDT projects and refreshed on what value they bring to the category management process.

Storytelling with Data

If you’re like most category managers, you’re probably challenged with navigating and presenting huge volumes of complex and disorganized data about products, retailers, shoppers, consumers, and more. With limited time and no shortage of information to share, how can you distill your ideas and data into actionable recommendations? In this session participants will learn how to use a storytelling framework to organize ideas and data that drive action, flex your story for different audiences and common business scenarios, and more. Kraft Heinz will supply their perspective and share real-category examples in this interactive workshop.  

Shopper Mythbusting

Shoppers have shorter attention spans than goldfish – fact or myth? Retail marketing based on faulty psychology can lead to costly missteps. Creating breakthrough retail strategies for tomorrow starts with an honest assessment of the knowledge and insights that fuel them today. Join this thought-provoking workshop with Dr. Chris Gray to challenge your assumptions and update your understanding of shoppers and their behavior in today’s retail environment. Leave this session with new perspectives and practical next steps for applying a myth-busting mindset to prevent misinformation and biases from sabotaging the success of your retail initiatives.

Securing the right talent icon

Securing Top Talent Through Consistency, Communication, and the Candidate Experience

Hiring is one of the biggest challenges businesses are facing today. How do you attract top candidates? Are you positioned to keep them engaged so you can build out a world-class team? Join this workshop with expert recruiters from SAY Group to learn the ins and outs of creating an exceptional hiring experience, both internally and for candidates. In this hands-on session, you’ll collaborate with colleagues, dive into real examples from your company’s current process, and receive best practices from SAY Group experts so that you walk away with clear steps for making positive changes to secure top talent.

Speakers

Flora Delaney speaker

Flora Delaney

President

DELANEY CONSULTING

Space Planning for Non-Space Professionals

As president of Delaney Consulting, Flora Delaney works with large and small retailers around the world, helping them to rediscover what makes them successful. Flora also facilitates ARC’s Retail Space Planning Charter, specifically for retailers to tackle research, build formal and informal networking and mentorships, create a common language, and more. Before founding Delaney Consulting, Flora held officer positions in Visual Merchandising and Buying at Best Buy. She has also worked at organizations such as Ahold USA, Kraft and Unilever. Flora is the author of the book “RETAIL: The Second-Oldest Profession.”

Russ Onish Vista Grande speaker

Russ Onish

President

VISTA GRANDE

Activating an Omnichannel CDT

Russ Onish is President of Vista Grande, a shopper insights consultancy he started 5 years ago. Vista Grande has delivered over 50 Decision Trees around the globe over the last few years using its proprietary Category Choice Architecture® approach and analytic framework. Russ was an active participant at the dawn of category management in the mid-1990s working with Brian Harris and executive leadership at Safeway. He has delivered many Market Structures during his 15 year career with IRI and as General Manager at Decision Insights. He has been a client of leading Decision Tree service providers during his tenure leading Category Management and Shopper Insights functional teams at Nestle USA and Campbell Soup Company.

Janine Kurnoff

Co-founder and Chief Innovation Officer

THE PRESENTATION COMPANY

Storytelling with Data

Janine Kurnoff is the Co-founder and Chief Innovation Officer of The Presentation Company (TPC). As the visionary behind TPC’s award-winning storytelling and data visualization workshops, Janine is passionate about helping talented businesspeople bring clarity and meaning to their ideas and data in a way that influences decisions and drives business forward. For over 20 years, she has partnered with Fortune 500 companies – including Meta, T-Mobile, Medtronic, and top CPG brands Kraft Heinz, Colgate-Palmolive, and Nestlé – to transform teams into strategic and influential visual communicators.

Hasan Issa

Advisor, Category Leadership

KRAFT HEINZ

Storytelling with Data

Since 2021 Hasan has been a Category Leadership Advisor where storytelling is critical. In this role, he’s built relationships with Customer Teams to ensure that Kraft Heinz grows through mutually beneficial strategies by understanding consumers, market, shelving, and assortment opportunities. Outside of business responsibilities, Hasan has helped drive a culture of storytelling by hosting several workshops to help his peers develop this crucial skill.

Jessica Keenan

Associate Director, Category Leadership

KRAFT HEINZ

Storytelling with Data

Jessica began her career with Kraft Heinz in 2018, in roles of increasing responsibility on the Target Category Leadership team. She and her team leveraged storytelling to execute shopper-centric initiatives that resulted in category growth and an elevated partnership with Target. In 2022, Jessica assumed the role of Associate Director, Category Leadership for the Albertsons business, where effective storytelling continues to play a critical role in building trusting relationships, translating data into actionable insights, and influencing long-term strategies. Beyond her business responsibilities, Jessica leads a Learning & Development initiative for KHC’s Customer Development Organization. She is also the Learning & Development Co-Lead for KHC’s Women’s Business Resource Group.

Chris Gray headshot

Chris Gray

Founder

THE BUYCOLOGIST

Shopper Mythbusting

Dr. Chris Gray is a formally trained psychologist who has been a pioneering expert in consumer psychology and purchase behavior for more than two decades. In that time, he has interviewed, observed, and shopped along with thousands of consumers to discover the underlying factors that govern purchase decisions and motivate buying behavior across a wide range of product categories —from dish soap to diamonds. Chris’s formal training, retail background, and real-world experience render him uniquely able to translate complex psychological concepts into actionable insights and useful, business-building strategies. Chris is an experienced, engaging, and enthusiastic speaker, trainer, coach, and facilitator. His spirited workshops and training programs have inspired clients and conferences around the world on topics related to consumer psychology, buying behavior, customer engagement, innovation, and selling strategy.

Stacey Penn headshot

Stacey Penn

President

SAY GROUP

Securing Top Talent Through Consistency, Communication, and the Candidate Experience

In her 25 years of recruiting, Stacey has learned the talent acquisition business from every angle. She began her career in the high-energy, fast-paced environment of contingency recruiting and later transferred to a role overseeing the US recruiting operations for three divisions of sales at Armstrong World Industries. Stacey believes recruiting is most successful when done with a high-value, strategic mentality delivered by people that deeply understand how it all fits together. Wanting to focus on this better way of recruiting led her to open SAY Group in 2005, where she serves a variety of clients across industries as well as runs workshops, bootcamps, and presents at various events.