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2017 Minneapolis/St. Paul Vistage Executive Summit

Hosted in Minneapolis Tuesday, September 26, 2017 7:15 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. CDT

Driving Dynamic Decisions

Executives are in the business of making decisions.ves2017-supportcircles-4 Difficult decisions. Big decisions.
Decisions no one else can make.

Many times, there are no clear-cut answers. But there ARE make-or-break consequences.

This is the world you live in. Own it.
Don’t just make a decision. Optimize it.

What is the Vistage Executive Summit?
Helmed by event speakers who walk the talk, the Vistage Executive Summit is not for everyone. It is for you. Executive. Leader. Chief Problem-Solver. This event will provide you with the insights to make better decisions, helping you refine your instincts, improve your judgment, and expand your perspectives.

Every leader can define their tenure by a handful of decisions they made. This event has been re-engineered to enhance your leadership effectiveness, in these key areas:

Business optimization

Fortify your foundation with trusted perspectives, and original approaches to decision-making. 

Leadership enhancement

Sharpen your focus. Bolster your confidence. Define your style. Master the art of execution, to lead fearlessly.


Be empowered to lead with innovation and creativity. Speakers and peers push the conversation forward, helping you grow personally and professionally.


Immediately start making better decisions for your unique business. Leave equipped with actionable recommendations to translate inspiration into progress.

Why Attend

Leadership is the art of execution.

The Vistage Executive Summit will provide tangible tools to help you adeptly conquer challenges large, small, or seemingly incomprehensible (we have all been there) and make the decisions that get results. Watch and learn more about why your peers find value in attending Vistage Executive Summits.

Event Speakers

Kindra Hall

Speaker, author, consultant

The irresistible power of strategic storytelling

In an increasingly connected and competitive economy, leaders must not only be dynamic decision makers, they must communicate their decisions in dynamic ways. Strategic storytelling — when properly executed — is an approach that gets results. In her presentation, Kindra Hall will demonstrate how strategic storytelling makes leaders more compelling and influential. Learn how to utilize storytelling to motivate your team, align your messages, and build a loyal following. Leave with a blueprint for strategic storytelling you can implement into every presentation, and actionable tips for finding the strategic story in every leadership scenario.

Steve Farber

Founder and president, The Extreme Leadership Institute

The four leadership elements of an innovative company culture (and how to apply them)

The question isn’t whether or not you have a culture (you do). The question is, is it the kind of culture that supports and propels your mission and objectives? A company’s unique culture is a direct result of the decisions a leader makes and the behavioral example he or she sets. In his presentation, Steve Farber will offer compelling case studies, actionable steps and provocative insights, including startling new research on how informal networks can help — or hinder — an organization committed to growth. Leave understanding how to cultivate a culture that supports your organization’s objectives, while making a positive difference in the lives of employees and customers.

Peter Himmelman - Big Muse

Big Muse founder and Grammy Award-winner

Moving through fear: Taking decisive action in an imperfect world

By nature, humans are uncomfortable with change, and boundaries not clearly defined. Yet —uncertainty is all around us. Becoming comfortable with not knowing is one of the most important aspects of leadership and creative decision-making. Peter Himmelman and Big Muse deliver a powerhouse presentation to demonstrate how the powers of decision-making are engaged and strengthened by comfort with the unknown. How the very ambiguity you fear, is in fact the pathway to your moment of discovery. Leave empowered to move quickly into a creative mindset, for action even in imperfect conditions.


Minneapolis Convention Center

7:15 - 9:00 AM

7:30 - 8:30 AM
Network Breakfast Breakouts: Manufacturing | Women in Leadership | Purpose-Driven Business

9:00 - 9:45 AM
Welcome & Opening Remarks

9:45 - 10:30 AM
Kindra Hall The irresistible power of strategic storytelling, part 1

10:30 – 11:00 AM
AM Break

11:00 - 11:40 AM
Kindra Hall The irresistible power of strategic storytelling, part 2

11:40 - 12:50 PM

11:40 - 12:50 PM
Lunch Breakouts Emplify | U.S. Trust

11:40 - 12:50 PM
Experience Vistage

12:50 - 2:10 PM
Peter Himmelman Moving through fear: Taking decisive action in an imperfect world

2:10 - 2:40 PM
PM Break

2:40 - 4:00 PM
Steve Farber The four leadership elements of an innovative company culture (and how to apply them)

4:00 - 4:05 PM
Closing Comments

4:05 - 5:00 PM
Networking Reception

Breakout sessions

M101 A | 7:30 - 8:30 AM

Network Breakfast Breakout | Manufacturing

Great people = great competitive advantage in the manufacturing industry. Join Vistage manufacturing peers for networking, discussion, and exchange of best practices on the most pressing people-related topics. Led by Vistage member Kathleen Quinn Votaw, CEO of TalenTrust, leave with actionable tips for:
  • Cultivating your company culture.
  • Sourcing the most qualified candidates.
  • Strengthening your current team.
  • Maximizing an aging workforce.
Networks breakout sessions are open to all Vistage members and guests. Register now to secure your spot! Hosted by the Manufacturing Network—a virtual My Vistage community where members, Chairs, and speakers in the manufacturing industry access expert resources and get their most pressing questions answered by trusted peers—and strategic partner, TalenTrust. Start the conversation early: Join the Manufacturing Network today.

M101 B | 7:30 - 8:30 AM

Network Breakfast Breakout | Purpose-Driven Business

Join us for breakfast and peer-to-peer conversations exploring your current conscious business challenges, roadblocks and opportunities. Members will have the chance to meet other regional members and address issues such as:

  • What is your organization’s purpose and why is this your focus?
  • How are you communicating your business’ purpose internally and externally?
  • Why did you start implementing conscious business practices? Why haven’t you?

Members are encouraged to bring their own questions and challenges to this interactive session. Everyone is welcome. Hosted by the Purpose-Driven Business Network.

M101 C | 7:30 - 8:30 AM

Network Breakfast Breakout | Women in Leadership

Join us for breakfast and peer-to-peer conversations exploring your current challenges and opportunities facing today's women business leaders. Members will have the chance to meet other regional female members and address questions such as:
  • What are the most significant things we as women leaders need to be thinking, being and doing to guide our companies through the coming years?
  • What is the most valuable piece of advice you’ve ever received, and how did it impact you as a leader?
  • How have you overcome any gender-related roadblocks in your career?
Members are encouraged to bring their own challenges to this interactive session. Everyone is welcome. Hosted by the Women in Leadership Network.

M101 A | 11:40 - 12:50 PM

Lunch Breakout | Building an Employee Engagement Strategy for 2020

Presenter: Santiago Jaramillo, Founder & CEO, Emplify

According to the Vistage Confidence Index, talent management and leadership development are two concerns for members this year. Crafting a documented employee engagement strategy for your executive team is paramount for meeting and exceeding these objectives. Join Santiago Jaramillo, CEO & Founder of Emplify and Amazon best-selling author to:
  • Create your own personal engagement action summary to help you build your own strategy to align your executive team.
  • Get best practices and real-life examples of how Vistage companies have put engagement strategies into action and achieved unprecedented business results.
  • Learn how millennials play a part in the future of the workforce and how to engage a multi-generational workforce.

M101 C | 11:40 - 12:50 PM

Lunch Breakout | The Owner’s Journey: Lessons learned before, during and after the sale of a business

Presenter: Karen Reynolds Sharkey, National Business Owner Strategy Executive, U.S. Trust and Bob Kitzman, Business Transition Specialist, U.S. Trust, Bank of America Private Wealth Management

Giving up company ownership can be the largest and most important step in a business owner’s career and many successful owners are not well prepared to take this step.
  • Gain insights and strategies that address the challenges business owners can face when deciding what the next step is for their business.
  • Better understand how a business owner might prepare for a sale, along with potential pitfalls.
  • Learn about various personal planning techniques business owners should consider when embarking on a sale.



Minneapolis Convention Center
1301 2nd Ave S
Minneapolis, MN
Optimize the decisions you face and the processes that you use to make them.