Smart Manufacturing Summit


Ford’s Fight For The Future  

Debbie Manzano, Director of Manufacturing, Current Model Electric Vehicle (EV), Ford Motor Company

As America’s most iconic industrial company undergoes its most dramatic reinvention since its inception, you’ll meet with Debbie Manzano, Director of Manufacturing, to understand how a transformational wave of electric vehicles, automation, new labor deals, design, engineering and software could come together to change nearly everything about manufacturing in the years to come. The future starts now—with boundless opportunities for those who are able to take advantage. We’ll help you get ready in this exclusive Chief Executive live case study. 

Winning at Automation ASAP 

Tom Kelly, Executive Director and CEO, Automation Alley

Rapid technology changes and soaring labor costs are driving manufacturers to challenge the way products are made. But digital transformation mistakes are costly and scaling is filled with pitfalls and potential disasters, which can be especially painful—or even catastrophic—for mid-sized firms. Automation Alley, one of the most experienced automation advisory organizations in the world, will share the hard-won lessons gleaned from helping dozens of small and mid-sized firms add technology to their operations, giving you a chance to learn from the mistakes of others—and lap rivals in the years to come. 

How Webasto is Winning the Talent War Now

Corey Stowell, Vice President, Human Resources, Webasto Americas

When it comes to building a cohesive and engaged team, this is the most difficult, complex time in a generation. The CHRO at Webasto Americas, one of the most forward-thinking mid-market manufacturing outfits in the country, will detail how his team successfully transformed their culture and people strategy—just in time to see it challenged by the Great Resignation. He’ll share how they’re retooling their people-first model to build resilience—and growth—in the face of enormous headwinds, with pragmatic to-dos and takeaways for everyone.

Lean Truth: Just-in-Time to Tackle Today’s Supply Chain Crisis  

Jeff Liker, Bestselling Author of The Toyota Way; renowned global expert on Lean Manufacturing and Just-In-Time

The Covid pandemic, unending production glitches, global political unrest and a world of logistics bottlenecks seemed to write the obituary for the age of just-in-time. But one of the world’s foremost experts on the subject argues that following the mainstream media’s ill-formed narratives—and advice—could create an even bigger disaster. In this brand-new presentation created exclusively for the Smart Manufacturing Summit, Liker will dig into his decades of experience, research and industry connections to showcase how the smartest manufacturing veterans are fusing lean principles with resiliency goals and adapting their business models to respond to today’s supply chain pressures and win in the years ahead—and how you can too.

Smarter Design, Smarter Marketing

Shannon Washburn, Chief Executive Officer, Shinola

Whether you’re selling B2C or B2B, in the age of Amazon your customers now demand a whole new kind of frictionless buying experience, one requiring unprecedented, continuous engagement between design, sales, supply chain, marketing, manufacturing and distribution. How do you make it all work? And how do you keep the customer at the center of it all? We’ll discuss the challenges and help you find the opportunities with the folks at Shinola, a master at crafting great, U.S.-made products—and brands—and even greater customer experiences.


Strategic Planning Workshop

1:00 - 5:00 pm

Over 70% of Executives Surveyed Agree: Many Strategic Planning Efforts Lack Systematic Approach Tips for Enhancing Your Strategic Planning Process

Executives expressed frustration with their current strategic planning process. Issues include:

  1. Lack of systematic approach (70%)
  2. Laundry lists without prioritization (68%)
  3. Decisions based on personalities rather than facts and information (65%)


Steve Rutan and Denise Harrison have put together an afternoon workshop that will provide the tools you need to address these concerns.  They have worked with hundreds of executives to develop a systematic approach that will enable your team to make better decisions during strategic planning.  Steve and Denise will walk you through exercises for prioritizing your lists and steps that will reset and reinvigorate your process.  This will be a hands-on workshop that will enable you to think about your business as you use the tools that are being presented.  If you are ready for a Strategic Planning tune-up, select this workshop in your registration form.  The additional fee of $695 will be added to your total.

To sign up, select this option in your registration form. Additional fee of $695 will be added to your total.

New York, NY: ​​​Chief Executive's Corporate Citizenship Awards 2017

Women in Leadership Seminar and Peer Discussion

2:00 - 5:00 pm

Female leaders face the same issues all leaders do, but they often face additional challenges too. In this peer session, we will facilitate a discussion of best practices and how to overcome common barriers to help women leaders be more effective within and outside their organizations. 

Limited space available.

To sign up, select this option in your registration form. Additional fee of $495 will be added to your total.

Golf Outing

10:30 - 5:00 pm
General’s Retreat at Hermitage Golf Course
Sponsored by UBS

General’s Retreat, built in 1986 with architect Gary Roger Baird, has been voted the “Best Golf Course in Nashville” and is a “must play” when visiting the Nashville, Tennessee area. With the beautiful setting along the Cumberland River, golfers of all capabilities will thoroughly enjoy the golf, scenery and hospitality.

The golf outing fee includes transportation to and from the hotel, greens/cart fees, use of practice facilities, and boxed lunch. The bus will leave the hotel at 10:30 am for a noon shotgun start and return to the hotel after the cocktail reception following the completion of the round.

To sign up, select this option in your registration form. Additional fee of $295 will be added to your total.