TOP CEO Conference looks at issues facing regional CEOs
TRENDS magazine, in association with the INSEAD Business School, launched the Top CEO Conference and Awards. The Conference will take place on April 5, 2016, and is aimed at creating an open dialogue among the regional executives on ways to help improve their business and the region. The second edition of the TOP CEO Awards ceremony will be held on the evening of the same day.
The TOP CEO Conference and Awards have been organized by TRENDS and INSEAD, which was recently ranked the number one business school by the UK’s The Financial Times. The conference and awards aim also at further pushing the anti-corruption and transparency agendas in the region.
The themes of the TOP CEO Conference in 2016 are diverse and are very relevant to the region’s business environment, take a look at some ofnthe main themes below.
Economic diversification: As the region moves away from oil, there are strong indications of the disintegration of old business models. What will be the effects on businesses in the next few years? Is there a risk-proof business model?
When tech kills your business: Old jobs and businesses are disappearing, while new ones are being created. Is this affecting your business? How will you deal with it and adapt to new realities?
VAT and its consequences: Subsidies are the past and taxes are the future of the gcc. How this will affect your consumers? How tax-ready is your company? What we can learn from other markets? What legal know-how is required?
Women in boardrooms: Under-represented in the region’s job market, it’s high-time women professionals are given their due. Women in boardrooms bring the point of view of almost 50 percent of your consumers. What can companies do to create women business leaders of the future? GCC governments are moving in the right direction, but how can businesses keep up with the changes?
Anti-corruption and transparency: one of biggest hurdles is achieving good corporate governance. Where should we start? Are the problems identified? What are the perks of finding good corporate governance solutions?
Adapting to the end of American umbrella: Quite certainly, the united states has taken a few steps back from this region. Will this leave a strong void? Who will fill the vacuum? Russia? How this will affect the businesses in the region?
Education and talent: With the increasing digital components in business and the rise of artificial intelligence, the future of jobs looks challenging yet full of opportunities. How can businesses help to create the workforce of the future? Are more tie-ups with educational institutes needed? What can be done to infuse scientific spirit into young population of the region?
Cybersecurity: As the world gets more and more connected, the risks of attacks resulting in financial and data loss are increasing. Is there an iron wall? How to deal with the increasing costs of cybercrime?
The aspirations of youth: With more than 100 million youth, the middle east and the gcc region have a reserve of human energy that can help them transform for the better. How can the government and the private sector help unleash this energy and focus it on initiatives that will create jobs and transform the region?
The forthcoming Top CEO Awards will celebrate the very best in GCC business leadership. The prestigious annual event, organized by TRENDS magazine and INSEAD – the leading international business school – sets the standard for business awards programs in the region by honoring only leaders from publicly listed companies.
Top CEO was established to acknowledge industry heads at the helm of growth in the Gulf equities market. Recognizing that the region’s stock markets are the engines of the economy, the program celebrates the business acumen of senior GCC business figures and highlights those individuals who have excelled as supreme guiding lights for their respective listed organizations.
Julien Hawari, Co-CEO at Mediaquest, the media company organizing the event and publisher of TRENDS magazine, said: Top CEO is a major awards ceremony held to recognize and celebrate the achievements of the region’s leading CEOs. Along with independent auditors, TRENDS and INSEAD will ensure the transparency of the process The awards’ stringent and open evaluation procedures make them the foremost leadership awards program in the region and a benchmark for business heads and their companies.”
5 minutes with... Janthana Kaenprakhamroy, CEO, Tapoly
Founder and CEO of award-winning insurtech firm Tapoly, Janthana Kaenprakhamroy heads up Europe’s first on-demand insurance platform for the gig economy, winning industry awards, innovating in the digital insurance space, and leading with inclusivity.
Here, Business Chief talks to Janthana about her leadership style and skills.
What do you do, in a nutshell?
I’m founder and CEO of Tapoly, a digital MGA providing a full stack of commercial lines insurance specifically for SMEs and freelancers, as well as a SaaS solution to connect insurers with their distribution partners. We build bespoke, end-to-end platforms encompassing the whole customer journey, but can also integrate our APIs within existing systems. We were proud to win Insurance Provider of the Year at the British Small Business Awards 2018 and receive silver in the Insurtech category at the Efma & Accenture Innovation in Insurance Awards 2019.
How would you describe your leadership style?
I try to be as inclusive a leader as possible. I’m committed to creating space for everyone to shine. Many of the roles at Tapoly are performed by women and I speak at industry events to encourage more people to get involved in insurance/insurtech. Similarly, I always try to maintain a growth mindset. I think it’s important to retain values to support learning and development, like reliability, working hard and punctuality.
What’s the best leadership advice you’ve received?
Build your network and seek advice. As a leader, you need smart people around you to help you grow your business. It’s not about personally being the best, but being able to find resources and get help where needed.
How do you see leadership changing in a COVID world?
I think the pandemic has proven the importance of inclusive leadership so that everyone feels supported and valued. It’s also shown the importance of being flexible as a leader. We’ve had to remain adaptable to continue delivering high levels of customer service. This flexibility has also been important when supporting employees as everyone has had individual pressures to deal with during this time. Leaders should continue to embed this flexibility within their organisations moving forward.
They say ‘from every crisis comes opportunity’, what opportunities do you see?
The past year has been challenging, but it has also proven the importance of digital transformation in insurance. When working from home was required, it was much harder for insurers to adjust who had not embedded technology within their operating processes because they did not have data stored in the cloud and it caused communication delays with concerned customers at a time when this communication should have been a priority, which ultimately impacts the level of customer satisfaction. This demonstrates the importance of what we are trying to achieve at Tapoly in driving digitalisation in insurance and making communication between insurers and distribution partners seamless.
What advice would you give to your younger self just starting out in the industry?
Start sooner, don’t be afraid to take (calculated) risks and make sure you raise enough money to get you through the initial seed stage.