STORES Convention Daily - 2019 Big Show Day 2 - 1



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A Big Show for a Big and Vibrant Industry


J's Wholesale Club Chairman,
President and CEO Chris Baldwin
opened NRF 2019: Retail's Big
Show in grand style, balancing the "big"
of retail with the impact of its individual
innovative leaders.
The Sunday morning session began
with a moment of silence to honor of
one those icons in particular: Nordstrom
Co-president Blake Nordstrom, who died
suddenly in recent weeks at the age of 58.
"Blake Nordstrom was a great friend
to many of us, a visionary leader who was
committed to making a positive difference
for future generations," said Baldwin, who
also serves as chairman of NRF's board of
The moment closed with applause,
and Baldwin moved on to talk about "the
industry that Blake loved so much," as well
as this year's show. It is, he noted, the largest retail conference and expo worldwide.
The 108th annual event has drawn nearly
40,000 attendees from across the globe,
including 700 exhibitors, and is expected
to bring a $45 million impact to New York
City. There are more than 500 scheduled

BJ's Wholesale Club Chairman, President and CEO Chris Baldwin welcomes
attendees to NRF 2019: Retail's Big Show by recognizing leaders and companies
that are helping reimagine the industry.

speakers in more than 200 sessions, making up more than 100 hours of content.
Opportunities for growth and inspiration
And so, he asked the crowd, "Who
remembers 2016?" That was the year of

The Inclusion Imperative


n front of a near-capacity crowd in the
Qualtrics Theatre yesterday morning,
Shannon Schuyler, chief purpose officer
for PwC, introduced a series of speakers
discussing workplace diversity and inclusion: Lars Petersson, president of IKEA U.S.;
Carolyn Tastad, group president, North

America, and executive sponsor of gender
equality at Procter & Gamble; and James
Fripp, chief diversity and inclusion officer
with YUM! Brands.
Addressing diversity issues, Schuyler
said, requires an organization to hold
candid conversations in the workplace,

Hubert Joly, chairman and CEO of Best Buy Co. Inc., speaks with NRF
President and CEO Matthew Shay Sunday about leadership and company

Store Operations

the supposed "retail apocalypse," complete with store closings, bankruptcies
and layoffs.
"I would love to say that retail is back,
but that would be wrong," he said. "Retail
never went away. As I stand here today, I

get ready
Addressing diversity
issues requires an organization to hold candid
conversations in the
workplace, understand
the power of unconscious
bias and share practices
that work, inside the
organization and out.
understand the power of unconscious bias
(people often have opinions about people
different from themselves that they are not
even aware of having) and share practices
that work, inside the organization and out.
"Diversity is no longer a competitive issue,
or just a business issue," she said. "It is a
societal issue."
And it is a matter of equal rights, said
IKEA's Petersson. "Management can and
should take responsibility for furthering
diversity and inclusion, and a company's
leadership must take action." He cited as an
example IKEA Japan, where he was posted
earlier in his career. In the beginning, he
said, three of the 1,000 IKEA managers in
Japan were women. When Petersson and

12/20/18 11:48 PM

can say that our industry is more healthy,
vibrant, innovative and exciting than ever."
A good portion of that is its people.
During his brief remarks, Baldwin called
out a variety of leaders - and companies
- helping "reimagine" the industry.
Doug McMillon, president and CEO
of Walmart, and John Furner, president
and CEO of Sam's Club: Not long ago,
Baldwin said, Walmart was known as a
bricks-and-mortar powerhouse, but now
is "very frequently mentioned as one of
the most innovative companies in the
world," thanks to strategic acquisitions,
investments in technology, increased automation, the aggressive rollout of grocery
pick-up and delivery and other factors.
Brian Cornell, chairman and CEO of
Target Corp.: The company "sets the standard for being an inspiring place to shop"
through next-generation store design,
remodeling, investment in team members,
and use of stores as hubs.
Miki Racine Berardelli, CEO of KIDBOX: The company uses data to change
See "Opening" on page 26

his team asked female employees what
would make management positions more
attractive to them, they overwhelmingly
mentioned work/life balance, specifically
the right to simply go home at the end
of the workday, rather than being forced
to socialize with bosses into the evening.
IKEA took notice of this; by the time Petersson left, 43 percent of IKEA's managers
there were women.
He took a similarly direct approach to
homophobia as head of IKEA Italy, where
the company published an ad showing
two men holding hands under a headline
reading "We are all family." In the United
States, IKEA is working on parental leave
policy, both for full-time and part-time
See "Inclusion" on page 22

THE POWER OF WOMEN............ 8


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