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2019 St. Louis Vistage Executive Summit

Hosted in Chesterfield Thursday, October 10, 2019 7:15 a.m. - 5:10 p.m. CDT

Event Overview

Change is happening faster than ever.
Make sure you have every advantage.

In our fast-paced world of high-speed technology, few businesses can afford a lax approach to change. High-performing companies are quick, nimble and ready to pounce. They incorporate progressive practices, the latest resources and timely information. They can see around the curves and past their blind spots. They’re not the followers. They are the pacesetters.

And they do not get there on their own.

Join your greater Vistage family and peers to rev up the energy
and kick up your drive at this year’s Vistage Executive Summit.

What is the Vistage Executive Summit?

A powerful event that brings together your peers and Chairs from across the region for a day of learning, inspiration and connection. It’s a day designed to put you on the fast track to more effective leadership, increased performance and better results.

You can count on:

You’ll come away with keen insights, broadened perspectives, practical tips to implement immediately, and mind racing possibilities.

Event Speakers

Alex Chausovsky

Director of Speaking Services, ITR Economics

Navigating the crest: Acute insights for improved decision-making

Make the right decisions, at the right time. This engaging, informative presentation will provide ITR's views of what to expect from the economy in 2019 and beyond, covering such topics as industry and consumer trends, business-to-business activity, tax reform, trade, inflation, interest rates and more.

Learn a method by which your company can take advantage of its own data, to make better-informed decisions based on the economic environment. Using rate-of-change calculations, find out how to identify where you are in your business cycle, and which key leading indicators should guide your business strategy. Leave with:

  • Clear, practical, actionable advice based on the current economic environment.
  • Understanding of the impact of government policy on the economy.
  • Inflation and interest rate expectations.

David Mattson

CEO and President, Sandler Organization

Organizational excellence

How can you grow your organization to the next level? Drawing from his playbook for entrepreneurs, “The Road to Excellence,” Dave Mattson will help you harness six powerful leadership strategies to take your business further:

            1. Planning
            2. Positions
            3. People
            4. Processes
            5. Performetrics
            6. Passion

        Leave informed to identify and overcome common blind spots that could be holding your company back.

Joe Galvin 2019

Chief Research Officer, Vistage Worldwide Inc.

Vistage Research perspective: Preparing for prosperity

As the economic slowdown moderates, now is the time for CEOs to prepare for the next wave of growth. Learn what the latest data from Vistage reveals about top-performing CEOs' big decisions, major investments and the critical decision factors that fuel growth and will prepare their organization to capitalize on the rising business cycle in the year ahead.


DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel St. Louis – Chesterfield

7:15 - 9:00 AM
Registration | Breakfast | Marketplace

7:45 - 8:30 AM
Morning Sessions
  • Entrepreneurs & Small Business Network
  • Purpose Driven Network
  • Technology Network

  • 8:30 - 9:00 AM

    9:00 - 9:10 AM
    General Session | Welcome

    9:10 - 9:40 AM
    Joe Galvin CEO decision factors: 2019 and beyond

    9:40 - 10:40 AM
    Alex Chausovsky Navigating the crest: Acute insights for improved decision-making 

    10:40 - 11:10 AM

    11:10 AM - 12:10 PM
    Afternoon Sessions (part 1)
  • 7 Reasons why it is so difficult to successfully transfer a business to insiders
  • Accountability formula
  • Sitting on a pile of dynamite
  • SUCCESS: Where planning and opportunity meet

  • 12:10 - 1:10 PM

    1:10 - 1:55 PM
    Afternoon Sessions (part 2)
  • Avoiding a critical blind spot that impacts productivity and turnover: ONBOARDING
  • Balance: Optimizing your data and leveraging relationships to manage medical costs
  • Legal landmines that await you and your clients
  • M&A stories from the front lines: A panel discussion of business owners who have sold

  • 1:55 - 2:15 PM

    2:15 - 2:35 PM
    Member Award Winners Spotlight

    2:35 - 3:55 PM
    Dave Mattson The road to excellence

    3:55 - 4:10 PM
    Summary Remarks

    4:10 - 5:10 PM

    Breakout sessions

    7:45 - 8:30 AM

    Morning Session | Strategies for Small Businesses to Manage Healthcare Costs

    Presenter: hosted by the Entrepreneurs and Small Business Network

    Many small business leaders believe that it is critical to provide healthcare for employees but struggle to find cost-effective coverage. In a 2018 survey by eHealth insurance, nearly 80% of small business owners said they worry about the cost of coverage; 30% of respondents said they have delayed hiring new employees in the past due to the cost of providing employer-sponsored health insurance. This workshop will investigate options and strategies to be able to offer your employees better coverage at less cost and risk. A panel of experts and members will provide some real world examples to achieve your goals, including use of a PEO.

    7:45 - 8:30 AM

    Morning Session | Value Driven Business: Authenticity in Leadership and Teamwork

    Presenter: Hosted by the Purpose-Driven Business Network

    Personal worth and value form the foundation of every thought, behavior, decision and relationship. Managing employees and building a strong team can be challenging. Behavior challenges, personality conflicts, and ulterior motives can threaten to undermine the company vision, mission and values. As a leader, you can have a greater impact with your teams by clearly defining your own personal worth. The resulting confidence and authenticity will lead your employees to do the same. Employees don’t always know how to “speak out or speak up”. As their leader, there are times you need to “reach in”. Attend this interactive session to explore ways to define and realize value and purpose for yourself and your employees, to achieve an emphatically engaged and productive team.

    7:45 - 8:30 AM

    Morning Session | The Impact of Technology Breaches to the Business Owner and CEO

    Presenter: Hosted by the Technology Network

    Hardly a week goes by that we don’t hear of yet another significant technology breach suffered by organizations of all kinds be they retail, health care, manufacturing or government. Theft of sensitive data, denial of service attacks and ransomware are commonplace. No organization is immune, and therefore, no CEO can avoid understanding his or her special role, and risk exposure, in coping with the risks of a technology breach of their sensitive data and mission critical systems. This interactive session will explore the risks and liabilities that those in the corner office face as a result of these threats and some insights on how to protect their organizations ….and themselves.

    11:10 AM - 12:10 PM

    Afternoon Session (part 1) | 7 Reasons why it is so difficult to successfully transfer a business to insiders

    Presenter: Panel of experts & Peter A. Racen, Director of Estate and Business Planning, Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Company

    According to the 2016 Business Enterprise Institute’s Business Owner Survey, when asked about which Exit Path owners were most interested in, 31% indicated a sale to management or employees.
    Our panel of experts will discuss the key elements of a successful transfer of a business to insiders. Our panel consists of:

    • Moderator: Steve Hughes – Professional speaker who combines high-end content with down-to-earth humor. Steve is not afraid to blow an audience away (figuratively).

    • Scott Hester, P.E. – Scott is President and one of the major shareholders of Counsilman-Hunsaker. He is one of the insiders who purchased the company from the previous owner, Scott Hunsaker.

    • Liam Ryan, Ph.D. – Liam is a Senior Consultant with CMA Consulting. CMA assists business owners with succession planning by evaluating the best leadership contenders for your business.

    • Patrick Jostrand, COO - Patrick is COO of King + Cross Companies and was instrumental in structuring a successful ESOP purchase of the business from the founders.

    • Peter Racen, CFP®, AEP®, CLU®, ChFC® - Peter successfully sold his 53-year-old, 3rd generation family business to a competitor over 20 years ago. He advises owners of closely-held businesses on exit planning, key people issues, buy/sell structures, and personal wealth management.

    11:10 AM - 12:10 PM

    Afternoon Session (part 1) | Accountability formula

    Presenter: Jeanet Wade, Certified EOS Implementer, Business Alchemist

    Learn the leadership and management abilities that lead to higher levels of accountability in your organization. Additional nuggets and insights will be shared on activating accountability in your people.

    11:10 AM - 12:10 PM

    Afternoon Session (part 1) | Sitting on a pile of dynamite

    Presenter: Carla Stone, President/CEO, TechGuard Security

    The next email your employee opens could cost you more than you’ll ever pay them. Ninety-four percent of companies hit by malware, ransom attacks and other cyber maladies did so by opening an email that looked innocent, familiar and safe. Every email that your team receives is a potential stick of dynamite and opening the wrong one is like striking a match to the fuse. Innocuous and public aspects of your information can be combined for use with malicious intent in mind. A typical email is an engraved invitation for cyber criminals to have their way with your system, and ultimately your enterprise through a personalized phishing attack that looks completely legit. In this interactive session you’ll leave how to protect the value of all your data including personally identifiable information (PII) as well as:

    • Learn the surprising information you’re failing to protect.

    • Gain insight on how to prevent catastrophic loss (cyber insurance policies have many exceptions and exclusions) from cybersecurity experts who have served the government and military for years.

    • Compete to WIN a security-related prize that will make your enterprise safer than the one you left this morning.

    11:10 AM - 12:10 PM

    Afternoon Session (part 1) | SUCCESS: Where planning and opportunity meet

    Presenter: Bob Kitzman, Bank of America Private Bank, Specialty Asset Manager & Jeff Keiser, Bank of America Private Bank, Wealth Strategies Advisor

    Whether the event is planned, unplanned or a matter of chance, the time for you to prepare your company, and yourself, for a change in ownership is now. Succession planning does not begin when you’ve chosen which path to forge; or when that path has been chosen for you. Rather, these activities should be an ongoing part of running your business.
    There are steps you can take now to be better prepared for when you decide to step away from your company. This session will provide:

    • A framework for recognizing the wide-range of constituents who have a stake in the disposition of your company

    • Insights on the market for private businesses, exit options, and how each relate to your personal priorities

    • Actions to take today to help you prepare your company, and yourself, for that future event

    1:10 - 1:55 PM

    Afternoon Session (part 2) | Avoiding a critical blind spot that impacts productivity and turnover: ONBOARDING

    Presenter: Patti Harty, Stark. & Associates | Sandler Training

    “You’ll never get a good ending if you keep starting with the same tired beginning.”, by Lisa Daily. Many of us spend a lot of time, energy, money and resources on finding the right person to hire. And, most come into our company highly motivated to succeed. However, when they arrive they don’t have the right onboarding plan to accelerate their start and keep them motivated along the way. This isn’t a session about HR onboarding. Although that is important, this session will focus on the attitudes required from leaders, the skills and steps required to implement a strong onboarding program, and the impact it will have on productivity and turnover.

    1:10 - 1:55 PM

    Afternoon Session (part 2) | Balance: Optimizing your data and leveraging relationships to manage medical costs

    Presenter: Jim Owen, President and CEO, and Ted Jeffries, Director of Claims, Missouri Employers Mutual

    As Missouri’s largest workers compensation insurance provider, managing medical costs is a continuous improvement process. We will share how we maximize our programs such as telehealth and our relationships with providers to ensure the best outcomes. We will address several strategies to managing your medical spend:

    • What the data is telling us and what it can tell you.

    • Price, utilization, and mix and why they matter.

    • Building the right expectations for ROI.

    1:10 - 1:55 PM

    Afternoon Session (part 2) | Legal landmines that await you and your clients

    Presenter: Affinity Law Group

    This fast-paced and informative panel presentation will offer important tips for business-savvy but legally challenged business owners and executives. Attendees will hear advice and war stories from four business attorneys with over 100 years of combined legal experience. Topics include:

    • The War for Talent

    • Traps and Opportunities in the Buy-Sell World

    • Commercial Real Estate Best (and Worst) Practices

    • The Estate Tax World

    • DIY: Why Not?

    1:10 - 1:55 PM

    Afternoon Session (part 2) | M&A stories from the front lines: A panel discussion of business owners who have sold

    Presenter: A Panel Discussion

    Hear from owners who have recently completed the sale of their businesses. Each panelist will share how they prepared for their sale in order to maximize valuation, when they knew it was the right time to sell and what they are doing today. They will discuss why they chose to sell to a strategic company or a private equity group and how they dealt with any legacy concerns. You’ll hear from owners who planned to exit the business after the sale and others who wanted to remain with the business for a period of time. Bring the questions you have been wanting to ask owners who have successfully completed a sale process.



    Get on the fast track to better decisions, quicker results and increased success.