- Product Innovation Development - https://www.frost.com/events/product-innovation-development -

Agenda – Workshop/MIT


Inspiration and Practical Realities

For further information or to register, call Adam Geiger at 1-305-450-1099, or email him at events.us@frost.com [1]

Schedule-at-a-Glance is continuously updated as additional information becomes available.


8:30 AM

Registration and Continental Breakfast

9:00 AM

Participant Meet ‘n’ Greet

This end-user/practitioner networking activity is your opportunity to identify – right out of the gate – those peers who share challenges similar to your own. It’s a great way to find participants who have thought leadership you can benefit from and to facilitate later dialogues throughout the event.

9:30 AM

Welcome and Headliner – Growth Portfolio Strategies for Rapidly Changing Industries

Joe Batista, Chief Creatologist Business Innovation & Strategy, Dell Technologies

The latest growth challenges focus on transformations, digital, and company pivots. These are all rooted in some important growth vectors and mindsets. Let’s explore some of the important vectors, their direction, as well as their magnitude and impact on strategies for building Growth Portfolios. Joe will share his framework and unique point of view by featuring a selection of rich case studies from his research and real world client engagements, highlighting actionable takeaways for your organization.

Key Take-Aways:

  • A framework to reimage your business for growth. Is it time to rethink and can you?
  • An understanding of competitive vs. durable advantage in your growth agenda
  • Strategies to leverage your most important resource and probably your largest SG&A cost


Joe Batista
Chief Creatologist Business Innovation & Strategy
Dell Technologies

Why You Should Listen to Joe:
Joe has been referred to as a business Sherpa living at the unique intersection of technology business who actively collaborates with clients to develop path-forward strategies that compress the distance between ideas and results. A globally recognized technology leader, he has managed billions in client portfolios, co-authored several publications, and been featured in several books and media outlets. His incredible passion for growth strategies and agendas that focus on creating alignment of interest, exposing an company’s “assets and currencies” creating meaningful client dialogues, and using powerful frameworks in over one hundred case studies that professionals walk away with actionable plans.

10:15 AM

Networking and Refreshment Break

10:35 AM

Executive Insight – Strategically Align Resources with Your Product Innovation Portfolio

Jeffrey Liggett, Vice President of Product Development, UnitedHealth Group

Innovative products are the lifeblood of every company. But ensuring that your organization allocates enough resources to focus on innovation while at the same time meeting the shorter-term demands of the marketplace isn’t easy. This presentation will show you how.

Key Take-Aways:

  • Best practices for ensuring you have the right resources in your organization to build innovative products
  • Techniques for building and maintaining “sticky teams” who can deliver innovative products
  • Lessons learned on how to measure the success of innovative products so that your organization can keep growing

Rockstar Insights:

Jeffrey Liggett
Vice President of Product Development
UnitedHealth Group

Why You Should Listen to Jeffrey:
Jeff has been successfully building, selling, and delivering innovative products for more than two decades. His experience in a broad range of industries with a wide variety of products gives him a unique perspective on what it takes to ensure that your company’s product portfolio becomes – and remains – innovative.

11:00 AM

Case History – Portfolio Agility: Balancing Breakthrough and Iterative Innovation

Sean McDowell, Senior Vice President Global Product Creation, Sperry

Many companies focus on protecting their core business.  However, if you’re not bringing new ideas to the table most businesses will slowly decline over time. The best companies have a balanced portfolio of core products, iterations and revolutionary products.  Using consumer insights we can plan for all three. Then using lifecycle management we can plan for new introductions when older products begin to fade. 

Key Take-Aways:

  • Insight on how to create a balanced portfolio with core, iterative and innovative platforms “The pyramid framework”
  • Steps on how to plan lifecycle management of your products
  • Best practices for finding white space in a crowded marketplace.

Rockstar Insights:

Sean McDowell
Senior Vice President Global Product Creation

Why You Should Listen to Sean:
Sean is an American Industrial designer and innovator. He is best known for his 20 year career at Nike – where he was creative director of the Olympics and Nike Running. Sean is known for solving complex problems with beautifully elegant solutions.

11:25 AM

The Fix – Crowdsourcing Tactical Solutions to Our Most Vexing Challenges

Share your smarts! Crowdsource solutions to the most vexing challenges facing product innovation executives today. These are fifteen minute rapid fire sessions with two rotations. Each brainstorm group will build upon the other to develop a list of readily operationalized ideas to these common challenges.

The Fix on Go-to-Market Strategy

Asia Stewart, Senior Product Manager, American Express
Derek Mauk, Innovation Leader | Former Senior Vice President, Strategy, Innovation and New Business, Anheuser-Busch InBev

Hosted By:

Asia Stewart
Senior Product Manager
American Express

Why You Should Listen to Asia:
Asia has been a product manager for eight plus years across various industries: high growth startups, beauty, and fintech. She’s a professional problem solver who specializes in creating efficient Go-To-Market launch strategies and powerful customer feedback channels to drive continual product improvement.

Derek Mauk
Innovation Leader | Former Senior Vice President, Strategy, Innovation and New Business
Anheuser-Busch InBev

Why You Should Listen to Derek:
Derek has been an award-winning innovation leader for over a decade at both Procter & Gamble and AB InBev. His experience with nearly 20 different consumer product categories, including durables + consumables business models, DTC and Distributor-led Go-To-Market, and multinational experiences gives Derek a unique vantage to share.

The Fix on Accelerating Cross-Discipline Decision Cycles

Benjamin Karas, Digital Product Manager, Grainger

Hosted By:

Benjamin Karas
Digital Product Manager

Why You Should Listen to Benjamin:
Ben is part of Grainger’s Technology Group and is currently modernizing experiences for 16 million + customers focused around Post Order eCommerce services. He has worked across all functional teams within Grainger to build the roadmap, own strategy, and partner with stakeholders from the North American branches.

The Fix on Embedding the Value of Data in an Overall Solution

Natalia Andreyeva, Senior Manager, Product Management, Carrier

Hosted By:

Natalia Andreyeva
Senior Manager, Product Management

Why You Should Listen to Natalia:
Natalia is a highly passionate innovator, product leader, and problem solver. She has 10+ years of experience in product strategy and digital business model innovation across a number of business verticals including Life & Science, Education, and Technology. She is currently leading the development of new, disruptive data-driven solutions in supply chain risk management. Natalia is fully committed to the belief that access to data is key to unlocking real global transformation and better business outcomes for everyone.

12:00 PM

Networking Luncheon

1:00 PM

Executive Bulletin – Building Innovation Infrastructure: MIT iHQ, Innovation Ecosystems, and the Future of MIT

Tim Miano, Executive Director, MIT Office of InnovationHQ

Rockstar Insights:

Tim Miano
Executive Director
MIT Office of InnovationHQ

Why You Should Listen to Tim:
An innovation professional, serial entrepreneur, startup mentor, and lecturer with a background in law, economics, and the sciences, Tim’s work focuses on leading the design and implementation of next-generation innovation infrastructure that allows for the interdisciplinary team-based solving of complex problems.

1:15 PM

MIT iHQ and Innovation Ecosystem 101 Tour

Join us for a tour of MIT’s new Innovation Headquarters (iHQ) in Cambridge, MA — the home for MIT’s thriving community of innovators & entrepreneurs. Located in the heart of Kendall Square, “the most innovative square mile on the planet”, iHQ is the culmination of a decade of careful planning and thoughtful community-building that designed to creates the opportunity for world-changing impact.


Learn more about the 9 resident programs and dozens of groups that support more than 2,500 student innovators working on over 500 startups annually. Featuring over 25,000 square feet of modular workspace and office space for key I&E organizations, iHQ is home to new experimental spaces including The Voxel Lab, a fully-equipped makerspace dedicated to nurturing innovation & entrepreneurship in music & the arts at MIT, and the MIT Alumni Venture Studio, a home for some of the many alumni programs from I&E organizations. During the tour, you’ll learn about MIT’s perspective on building a robust innovation ecosystem and the pedagogy that drove the design of the iHQ.

Lots of cool stuff happens here, sure to inspire!

2:15 PM

Executive Bulletin – Funding Innovation

Lucio Iannone, Vice President of Venture Investments, Leaps by Bayer
Imran Nasrullah, Vice President & Head of Open Innovation Center North America-East,

Going from invention to innovation is fraught with risk and likely failure. But this is where access to expertise & guidance coupled with capital can offer a path to success. Direct investment and collaboration and licensing are two means for advancing innovation. This session will address how VCs (corporate and otherwise) can foster innovation, working with first time founders/CEOs trying to raise capital. Additionally, the session will cover innovative programs that Bayer is implementing to provide guidance and expertise in helping early companies advance their programs.

Key Take-Aways:

  • Best practices in fostering a culture of intrapreneurship
  • Guide to creating a successful internal competition program
  • Framework to select the best investment
  • Best practices on the role of the board to make the investment a success

Rockstar Insights:

Lucio Iannone
Vice President of Venture Investments
Leaps by Bayer

Why You Should Listen to Lucio:
Lucio manages the health investment team and deal execution. He is involved in the sourcing, screening and mentoring of companies with game-changing science. Before joining Leaps by Bayer, he held several senior roles in biotechnology companies and venture capital firms..

Imran Nasrullah
Vice President & Head of Open Innovation Center North America-East

Why You Should Listen to Imran:
Imran is an intrapreneur driving external innovation with entrepreneurs and possesses 25 years of business development & licensing, strategy, economic development and technology transfer experience. Currently, he is responsible for forging new business relationships with academia, biotech and venture capital for early access to technologies. Imran also created & leads several programs at Bayer centered on mentoring and partnering with early-stage life science companies.

2:45 PM

Critical Issue Roundtable – Integrating New Disruptive Technologies into Your Innovation Portfolio

This roundtable captures the power of all participants’ voices, insights and experiences via group discussion and exploration of the issue at hand.
Genevieve Gurczenski, Experience Architect, Emerging Technology Innovation, W. L. Gore & Associates

Key Take-Aways:

  • Using Scenario Planning to incorporate emerging technology into your innovation landscape
  • How to architect your innovation portfolio for emerging technology churn
  • Emerging technology driven simulations shaping the Innovation Landscape

Hosted By:

Genevieve Gurczenski
Experience Architect, Emerging Technology Innovation
W. L. Gore & Associates

Why You Should Listen to Genevieve:
Gen is a futurist, change agent, and innovator at heart. As an experience architect on the W. L. Gore & Associates emerging technology innovation team she identifes signals, makes connections, and unlocks value through future forward digital technology solutions. Whether product design or buyer-journey focused, her curiosity, creativity, and human-centered approach delivers results.

3:30 PM

Capstone – Cultivating an Entrepreneurial Spirit

Stephanie Howard, Co-Founder & Chief Operating Officer, Endstate

There are proven ways to create a culture that encourages discovery and vision-building in unchartered territory while nurturing an appetite for risk and failure. Why do some brands continuously out-innovate the competition? It’s built into their culture, and every employee understands that it is their duty to deliver what’s on the emerging future.

Key Take-Aways:

  • Case histories of two brands who have successfully built a culture that embraces “anything is possible.”
  • A guide to questions you should be asking internally that lead to entrepreneurial thinking
  • New ways to attract talent to your organization


Stephanie Howard
Co-Founder & Chief Operating Officer

Why You Should Listen to Stephanie:
With over 25 years of experience including Design Director roles at Nike and New Balance, Innovation Director at Seventh Generation, and innovation consultant to leading brands, Stephanie is now cofounder Endstate, a company pioneering in Web3. Her experience leading groundbreaking projects at iconic brands lends her unique insight into building a culture that creates conditions for entrepreneurial thinking.

4:00 PM

Content for the New Product Innovation Workshop at MIT InnovationHQ Concludes

4:30 PM

Happy Hour and Networking Dinner

Take networking a step further and join us for a dinner in the heart of Cambridge! A great opportunity to further relationships with your fellow peers in a relaxed, intimate setting! Not to Be Missed! The Amazing Dinner and Conversations We’ll Be Enjoying!