Smart Manufacturing Meetup – Leadership & Strategy


 Monday, 4 November 2019 at 09:30-16:00

Dorpat Conference Centre, Tartu


Smart Manufacturing Meetup started in 2017 and focusses on delivering value to business executives. Inspiration, exchange of experience and business contacts are the core of Smart Manufacturing Meetup. This year’s event will focus on leadership & strategy – the fundamental part of every successful enterprise.

Company strategies concern how to grow the business, satisfy customers, outcompete rivals and respond to changing market conditions. Strategy implementation is a fundamentally market-driven and customer-driven entrepreneurial activity.

To have a successful company, all you need is a good strategy. Right?

Well, there is a famous quote by Peter Drucker “Culture eats strategy for breakfast”. Most organisations have the intellectual horsepower, knowledge and experience required to excel.
The ability to integrate these elements is usually the missing link. Creating such an environment is a call for exceptional leadership.

Join us to find out how to implement strategy and the leadership culture needed to proceed with sustainable business growth and change management.

Smart Manufacturing Meetup participants have valued educational talks from business leaders all over the world and new business contacts during networking. Jay Johnson, the JCI Vice President, will share valuable insights to influence and persuasion. His mission is to inspire the next generation of leadership.

Smart Manufacturing Meetup is an official part of the JCI World Congress. Also, the only event that will take you to discover Tartu, the second-largest city in Estonia and a Smart City since 1632.

Join us to:


World-class experts share their knowledge.


Your current and future cooperation partners will be present


self-empowerment and -development



9:00 Doors open and registration
10:00 Opening words

10:15 “China as an Innovation Economy: lessons for Europe and beyond” – Francesco Grillo
(Italy) and Paola Bonomo (Italy)
11:35 “Growth strategies” – TBA
12:05 “How to use storytelling to scale your business?” – Yasmine Khater (Singapore)
12:35 Chat with speakers, Q&A
13:00 – Lunch

14:00 “Is your culture ready for your strategy?” – Emiel van Est (The Netherlands)
14:30 “The Perfect Boss” – TBA
14:50 “Leadership as a Service” – Johanna Pystynen (Finland)
15:20 Chat with speakers, Q&A
16:00 “Influence and Persuasion” – Jay Johnson (USA)
16:40 Networking

For more info about speakers read on or check out the event webpage and Facebook page.



Paola Bonomo

Angel investor, advisor, and non-executive director (ITA)

Favourite subjects:

– Leadership
– Strategic positioning
– Angel investing
– Digital transformation
– Alliances and acquisitions

Paola Bonomo started her career at McKinsey & Company as an advisor to top management
teams at leading international companies on strategic positioning, growth, new markets,
alliances and acquisitions. She then worked in leadership roles in the digital domain such as
Senior Director, European Operations at eBay International; Head of Online Services,
Commercial Operations at Vodafone Italia; and Regional Director, Southern Europe at
Since 2009 she has invested in technology startups with Italian Angels for Growth, where she
focuses on investments in the digital space. In 2015 and 2016, Paola was named one of the
Inspiring Fifty, the fifty most inspiring women in European Technology. In 2017, she was
recognized with the Business Angel of the year award in Italy and the Golden Aurora Award
for the best woman business angel in Europe. In 2018, she co-founded Angels4Women.
Paola serves on the Boards of Directors at Telecom Italia S.p.A, AXA Assicuraxaioni S.p.A,
Piquadro S.p.A, and other public and private companies. She is also the president of Stanford
Club Italia, the local Stanford University alumni chapter.

Paola holds an undergraduate degree in Business Administration from Bocconi University in Milan and an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.

Topic: China as an Innovation Economy: lessons for Europe and Beyond
The study of China’s technological evolution in recent years holds lessons for Western economic systems. Although many aspects of the Chinese system are problematic when translating to liberal democracies. What are the “Chinese Lessons” we should learn? Paola Bonomo, an angel investor, interviews Francesco Grillo, consultant and academic, who has studied China with an open mind over the last several years.

Topic: China as an Innovation Economy: lessons for Europe and Beyond

The study of China’s technological evolution in recent years holds lessons for Western economic systems. Although many aspects of the Chinese system are problematic when translating to liberal democracies. What are the “Chinese Lessons” we should learn? Paola Bonomo, an angel investor, interviews Francesco Grillo, consultant and academic, who has studied China with an open mind over the last several years.

Francesco Grillo

Economist (Oxford), Managing Director of Vision & Value (ITA)

Favourite subjects:

  • Strategic growth
  • Innovation
  • Political economy

Francesco Grillo has been Visiting Fellow at the Oxford Internet Institute and Academic Visitor at St. Antony’s College (University of Oxford), as well as Advisor to the Italian Ministry of Education, Universities and Research. Currently, he is Associate at Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna of Pisa and teaches and at the University of International Business Economics in Beijing. Managing Director of Vision and Value, the management consulting firm, advising strategies to major institutions (including the European Commission and Italian Ministry of Economy) and multinationals. He is also a columnist for Corriere Della Sera, Linkiesta, and The Guardian, and a regular guest on La7, SkyTG24 and RaiNews24.

Jay Johnson

JCI Vice-President, CEO at Coeus Creative Group (USA)

Favourite subjects:

  • Behavioural intelligence
  • Body language
  • Successful negotiations

Jay Johnson is an internationally renowned speaker specializing in behaviour and organizational development. Jay has given keynotes and workshops in 19 countries across four continents, empowering audiences with a unique perspective of behavioural intelligence.

Jay has delivered a TEDx talk with more than 380K views demonstrating a new approach to dealing with difficult people. His delivery style is engaging and fun, all while giving audiences immediately usable skills to build stronger relationships, enhance influence, and lead effectively.

Jay works with Fortune 100 companies and national organizations such as Ford Motor Company, United Way, Consumers Energy, Keller Williams, Kentucky Fried Chicken, Crain Communication, Junior Chamber International, UM Health Systems, the Detroit Chamber, and AmeriCorps. Jay’s style makes him a crowd favourite and a remarkably motivating speaker.

Jay holds a Master’s Degree in communication, is a designated Master Trainer from the ATD, and was twice honoured with the Excellence in Training Award by the APCC. He has served in government as well as an International Vice President for a global NGO. Jay was named “Top Trainer” in 2017 by ATD Detroit. His passion for speaking manifests in everything he does. He is sure to inspire and empower your organization or group.

Topic: Influence and Persuasion

Building Influence as Emerging Leaders – the application of skills and abilities to accurately explain existing behaviour, predict future behaviour, influence other people’s behaviour, and control one’s behaviour.

Yasmine Khater

Sales Story Method (SGP)

Favourite subjects:

  • Sales strategy
  • Storytelling
  • Leadership
  • Scaling and growing
  • Psychology

Yasmine Khater is the sales strategist and serial entrepreneur that helps business leaders understand psychology to craft better stories that help influence decisions.

She runs the Sales Sales Story Method and helps leaders through her training program “Sales Story Labs”. In the program, they dive deeper and improve how they sell their story without feeling being sleazy, pushy or pretend to be someone else. Some of her clients include Salesforce, P&G, DBS, Credit Suisse and more.

Yasmine hosts the show the SalesStoryPodcast where she interviews CEOs from across Asia on how they use storytelling to scale and grow their business.

She has just come back from an expedition to the Arctic and passionate about climate change. Furthermore, she is producing an inspirational documentary of tech entrepreneurs who are building scaling solutions that will impact Asia.

Find her at or connect with her on LinkedIn or Instagram and Facebook

Topic: How to use storytelling to scale your business

We are now seeing the most significant decline of trust in the history of our world. For us to scale our business, our economies and the world we need to rebuild trust. Today we live in a world where commerce has no borders, and this is a massive opportunity that we can use to our advantage.

The ones who are leveraging this opportunity are learning to accelerate trustworthiness and share stories to communicate your vision, unify teams and attract clients.

Topic: Is Your Culture Ready for Your Strategy?

If you want to change the culture, if you’re going to change organisational DNA, you need to study the culture, you need to study the corporate DNA. Using tools to solve operational and process problems does not make any sense if you want to change organisational DNA and culture. The energy for continuous improvement lies not in tools and rules, nor operations and processes. The energy for continuous improvement comes from people. So what do you need to focus on? On people. What do you need to study? People.

Emiel van Est

Lean Leadership (NED)

Favourite subjects:

  • Hoshin Kanri – Connecting the strategy from the top floor to shop floor and visa Versa.
  • Oobeya – efficient and effective coordination of strategy and operational execution.
  • Continuous improvement culture
  • Process improvement
  • Quality management

How to make continuous improvement truly permanent has been the leading question for Emiel van Est for the past 20 years. He started improving and designing processes for Hewlett Packard in 1997 and has since then helped a diverse group of clients in many different industries with their Lean efforts. He has also introduced Lean to many people by engaging them in simulations like the one that he co-developed with Scania. Since 2010 Emiel has focussed his learning, teaching and practice on the deployment of Toyota Kata. That means the improvement routines that Mike Rother identified to be at the core of Toyota’s continuous improvement efforts. In 2013 Emiel designed a Strategy Deployment method based on Toyota Kata which is the core of his current work.

Topic: Leadership as a Service

Modern leadership is undergoing a climate change. The worn-down top-down leadership models are failing to produce desired results and becoming outdated. To improve your organization’s productivity and competitiveness, you need to start focusing on the individual needs of your employees.The main objective of servant leadership is the same throughout all organizations: removing obstacles that stand in the way of employees reaching their full potential. A productive way to do this is to match supply with demand in your HR work and to support self-organization, resulting in engaged, motivated employees. Enabling leadership models are beneficial for both your employer image and your organization’s performance. After all, customer experience is founded on employee experience.

Johanna Pystynen

Vincit, HR Director (FIN)

Favorite subjects:

  • Leadership as a Service
  • HR management
  • Culture development

Johanna Pystynen, who was included on the Workforce Game Changers list in 2015, has been a key figure in building Vincit’s successful corporate culture where self-direction, significance of work, and employee involvement are of crucial importance. At the moment, Johanna is working on making Vincit better than ever in the midst of merger activities, and exploring leadership from a whole new perspective – as a customized service.

IT Company Vincit’s HR director Johanna Pystynen joined the crew in 2012. She was given the task of creating a human resource management model that meets the needs of a modern specialist organization in the best possible way.

To date, Vincit has journeyed through bold experiments into becoming a software development and ICT service house with 500 employees and a 100% customer satisfaction guarantee. Vincit has won a number of HR awards, including the Best Staff Act award. Moreover, Vincit is a three-time winner of the Best Workplace in Finland Award (2014-2016) and awarded with Best Workplace in Europe in 2016.


“This conference provided a bird eye view on the Smart Manufacturing in Estonia and Nordic, as well created an exciting opportunity to meet with the huge amount of leaders and innovators from different sectors of manufacturing.”

Aleksandr Miina (Lean, CEO)

“Smart Manufacturing Meetup is best event to meet people with vision, experience and inner-drive to reshape the industry.”

Mihkel Tedremaa (Ericsson, Head of Product Technology)

“Smart Manufacturing Meetup conference is excellent. Practical and interesting case studies from inspiring speakers. Looking forward to next SMM conference.”

Karin Rex (Conectra, Sales Manager)

“The perfect place to meet with other business leaders, listen their stories and to learn from other’s experiences. The positive vibe of Tartu gives extra value to the event.”

Eveli Opmann (Estiko-Plastar, CEO

There’s a discount code JCI_WC2019. To use the code, enter it to the cell “Have a discount code?” upon registration.

The code gives you a 50% discount from the current price, which is 62.50€ .


JCI WC 2019 participants will get the chance to tick of Tartu, the only city in the word sTARTUp, from their bucket list. Free transportation on the route Tallinn-Tartu-Tallinn is organized and the info will be forwarded to JCI WC 2019 participants joining the industry leaders and forerunners at Smart Manufacturing Meetup in Tartu.

Buss from Tallinn will depart from Radisson Blu Sky Hotel (Rävala Street 3), at 7:15 AM and be back at Saku Grand Hall (Paldiski Road 104B, Tallinn) for the Opening Ceremony of JCI World Congress 2019 before 8:00PM.

Contact person

Kadri Arrak,, +372 50 308 84

Time left until Smart Manufacturing Meetup