Live from RILA LINK 2020: Day One

Hello from Dallas where more than 1,800 supply chain professionals have gathered for RILA’s LINK2020: The Retail Supply Chain Conference.

This is the only supply chain event designed by retail supply chain professionals for retail supply chain professionals. Attendees are here to learn, network, problem solve, and innovate.

Day 1 opened with remarks from RILA’s Vice President, Supply Chain Jess Dankert who set the stage and theme for the conference with these remarks:

“We are living in an amazing time and transformational era for retailers. There has been more change in the past 5 years than the last 20 years.”

Jess Dankert
  • VP, Supply Chain
  • Retail Leaders Industry Association

Fun fact:

Did you know the term supply chain was coined in 1905?

So much has changed since then and so much change is on the horizon!

The opening keynote speech was presented by Nancy Giordano, Strategic Futurist, Founder & Chief Executive Officer, Play Big, Inc.

Nancy encouraged the room to think boldly and posed two questions to the audience to really consider as we strategize for the future:

  • What does the future need + expect of us?
  • What are we in a unique position to create + contribute to it
After Nancy got everyone thinking about the future, Dr. Dale Henry, Businessman, Author, Trainer challenged the room to remain truthful as we navigate through the disruption.

“You and I have a responsibility to be truthful. The truth is not complicated, it’s not hard,

Dr. Dale Henry
  • Businessman, Author, Trainer

We also kicked off our first day of breakout sessions, focused on the key supply chain areas identified by retailers as most important to them: AI-powered forecasting, omni-channel automation, employee retention, tariffs and trade policy, the coronavirus outbreak and its impact on supply chains, building cultures of innovation, electric vehicles, parcel carrier contracts, emerging technology, changing role of the retail store, and urban fulfillment.

The conference regrouped for lunch where Cynthia Marshall, CEO of the Dallas Mavericks, led the entire group in an inspirational exercise examining diversity and inclusion.

She reminded us all that diversity is the invitation to the dance and inclusion is learning the steps. You need both. And to prove her point, she had the attendees up on their feet learning the Cupid Shuffle!

She left us with this quote:

“Just because you are right, does not mean, I am wrong. You just haven’t seen life from my side.”

Cynthia Marshall
  • CEO
  • Dallas Mavericks

Important words to reflect on as we all try and navigate through everchanging business landscape.

The Expo Experience opened after lunch, and this year we have over 350 top solution providers ready to work with retail supply leaders to address the industry’s most pressing supply chain challenges.

The afternoon featured compelling executive insight sessions from Hersey and Petco’s top supply chain leaders. Attendees also had the opportunity to hear pitches from our three finalists in the Startup Innovation Awards for Supply Chain – Gatik, Invent Analytics, and MagazinoGMBH. These finalists were chosen from a field of 50 applicants by RILA’s Supply Chain Leaders Council. Retail attendees will now vote on their favorite solutions and a winner will be announced from the big stage tomorrow.

Day one wrapped with valuable networking time for attendees in the Expo Experience, along with our first ever Startup Crawl, giving retailers the opportunity to interact with some of the most innovative solution providers in the industry.

It’s been a packed day filled with topflight education, networking, and more with the industry’s top supply chain leaders.

Tune in tomorrow for more coverage of the conference. And follow #RILALINK on social media for live coverage from Dallas!

See Day 2 Conference Highlights

See Day 3 Conference Highlights

  • Retail Supply Chain Conference
  • Supply Chain

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