kelly holmes workfront
June 7, 2019

Leap London Highlights: Keynotes from Dame Kelly Holmes, Phill Nosworthy, Alex Shootman, and More

As our global Leap conferences draw to a close for this year with our Leap London event, we have welcomed more than 2,400 work management leaders and hosted more than 250 sessions, led by over 200 presenters including authors, technologists, and of course our customers.

Delegates from enterprise organisations around the world, across multiple sectors - from retail to financial services, manufacturing to healthcare and pharmaceuticals - converged on Leap London to share their experiences and knowledge of the realities of modern work management.  As well as participating in a mix of expert-led workshops and networking events, Leap London offered keynotes from influencers from the world stage.

Special thanks must go out to all the sponsors who have made Leap London possible, including Ethos, Adobe, WNDYR, Bluprint, Ensemble, Smartworks, Allocadia, IO Integration, Acensys, LeapPoint, Milestone Management, AtAppStore, Agency 415, and Zee Jay Digital.

Here we share some of the highlights from three insightful, inspiring, and entertaining days in London.

Masters of Modern Work

Jada Balster, Vice President EMEA Marketing at Workfront opened the conference with some technological nostalgia inspired by the 50th anniversary of the moon landings on 6th June, which was the catalyst for so many technological innovations we take for granted today. In fact, 2019 is the year that marks many major milestones in the world’s technological evolution — from the Macintosh personal computer (35 years) to the internet (30 years), and even Facebook and Gmail (15 years). All have revolutionised how we communicate, collaborate, share information, and how we get work done.

With a brief glimpse into the past, the focus of the event turned to the future, specifically the future of work and how to master modern work. Throughout the conference, delegates were introduced to enterprise brands who are reimagining work within their organisations and the individuals who are pioneering modern work management and driving change.

Leap London audience

Career propelling: In his keynote, Workfront CEO Alex Shootman discussed how modern work is rapidly evolving and why the future will belong to companies that embrace change and empower their employees to innovate. He predicted a near-future c-suite role, the Chief Work Officer, and called out individual modern work management pioneers including Dea Mijakovac, Ian Reddy, Erica Gunn, Rob Mason, and Max Cheprasov — all of whom are shifting the way that work and management are viewed and prioritised within organisations, and whose careers are on a steep upwards trajectory as a result.

What does work look like today, in the modern age of digital transformation? Workfront customers Google Cloud, JLL, Refinitiv, Atlas Copco, Santander, and many others either hosted sessions or took to the main stage to answer this question from their own perspectives. They explained how they’re using Workfront to plan and execute work across teams, departments, geographies, and in many cases across the entire enterprise as the Operational System of Record (OSR).

google cloud workfront

Rose Hayes, VP Program Manager at JLL, who flew in from Hawaii for the occasion, joined Workfront Chief Customer Officer, Sue Fellows for a fireside chat where she offered up this advice to her peers: “Digital transformation is here to stay whether you like it or not. Start small, let people see the success, and allow people to be the champions.”

Day one of Leap London featured a rousing keynote speech from executive coach Phill Nosworthy, who talked about his theory of convergence, imploring the audience to close the gap (or converge) their skill with substance, their knowledge with application, intention with action, identity with reputation, and confidence with courage. There were many quotables from Phill’s speech, but these stood out: “Your impact is not defined by what you know” and “knowledge acquisition without application is procrastination.”

Empathy was the theme for the Women of Workfront lunch hosted by Workfront CMO Heidi Melin and special guest, workforce innovation specialist Sophie Wade who called for a mindset shift with these wise words: “Empathy is called a soft skill, but it’s not soft, it gives us strength.”

The final keynote at Leap London — the one that made us laugh, made us cry, and was outright awe-inspiring — was delivered by Dame Kelly Holmes, the only female British runner to win two gold medals in middle distance running at an Olympic games.

kelly holmes

Kelly shared her journey to Olympic glory with a packed main hall, retelling how she overcame multiple injuries, mental health problems, and doubters to win a double gold at Athens in 2004 (achieving her dream of winning the 1,500m and taking the 800m as well). She emphasised the importance of bringing your individual qualities to your team, saying that for her, “there is an I in team.” But she emphasised the importance of trusting in one’s team, building resilience through hard work, and never overlooking the minute details, because, for her, the small details are often the difference between being good and being excellent.

The drive and passion of the ever-growing Workfront community shone through more than ever during this year’s Leap and we’re already excited for Leap 2020!  Mark your calendars for June 2-3, 2020.

Stay Tuned for More!

In the coming months we’ll be adapting key thought leadership presentations from Leap into blog posts so readers can peruse insights and practical advice at their own pace. Subscribe to the blog below, and you won’t miss a thing.

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