FMI Unveils Final Details of New Format 'Future Connect' Event

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FMI Unveils Final Details of New Format 'Future Connect' Event

More than 1,300 people have registered to attend the Food Marketing Institute's (FMI) new Future Connect event, which is being billed as "the first industrywide leadership education event."
Set to take place May 4-6, 2009 at the Hyatt Regency in Dallas, Future Connect's ambitious agenda aims to educate high-potential associates from all levels of retailer, wholesaler, and supplier companies to direct teams, focus skills and talents and achieve high-profit sales.

Also on the agenda are interactive education sessions and group roundtables that will endeavor to help associates understand the landscape of issues facing the industry, including current business and consumer trends, developments in media and communications, and managing an increasingly diverse workforce.

Some of the speakers that will focus on major challenges, ethics and teambuilding:
- Dr. Stephen R. Covey, author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.
- Knight Kiplinger, editor in chief of Kiplinger's Personal Finance magazine, and the Kiplinger Letter.
- Pat Summitt, Tennessee Lady Vols basketball coach with an NCAA record 983 wins.
Kevin Sneader and Tim McGuire, directors of McKinsey & Co.

Among the speakers that will focus on critical leadership skills and keeping pace with changing consumers:
- Bob Whitman, chairman/c.e.o., FranklinCovey.
- Rob Bell, president of Focus Consulting
- Thomas Blischok, president of Global Retail Information Resources, Inc.
- Tamara Erickson, workforce futurist and co-author of the award-winning Workforce Crisis: How to Beat the Coming Shortage of Skills and Talent
- Todd Hale, s.v.p./consumer and shopper insights, The Nielsen Co.
- Mel Kleiman, expert on hiring and retaining the best workers, and author of five books, including the bestseller Hire Tough, Manage Easy
- Peg Neuhauser, president of PCN Associates, and author Tribal Warfare in Organizations.

Among the panelists/facilitators that will share tips on how they reached the executive suite:
- Beverly A. Grant, chief channel officer of The Procter & Gamble Co.'s U.S. CBD Grocery Channel.
- Richard N. Jurgens, chairman/c.e.o./president of Hy-Vee, Inc.
- Don Knauss, chairman/c.e.o. of The Clorox Co.
- Steven C. Smith, president/c.e.o. of K-VA-T Food Stores, Inc. and FMI board chair.
- Tres Lund, chairman/c.e.o., Lund Food Holdings, Inc.
- Janel Haugarth, e.v.p./c.o.o., supply chain, Supervalu Inc.
- Don McGeorge, president/c.o.o, The Kroger Co.

Future Connect will also feature a special program for CPG suppliers covering skills and strategies to increase center store sales, including presentations on topics such as sales calls, better communication and collaboration with retailers, and how trading partners can integrate their marketing strategies based on changing consumer lifestyles and demands.

FMI's Marketechnics 2009 conference will begin when Future Connect ends on Wednesday, May 6, an overlap that will give attendees of the technology show an opportunity to learn from the final speakers at Future Connect. The session will feature presentations on leadership and technology, such as communicating through new media in the Internet age by Nielson's Todd Hale and a presentation by Catalina Marketing Corp.'s president, Ed Kuehnle, on aligning consumer definitions to increase sales.

Marketechnics will then move to the Dallas Convention Center, where the exhibit hall will open at 2 p.m. on May 6. This conference will run through May 8 at the convention center.  Registrants for Future Connect will receive a $50 discount on Marketechnics registration.

For more information and/or to register for Future Connect, visit