SiPi Think Tank Dialogue is an annual, by invitation-only, closed-door round table dialogue session; for senior management representatives from the manufacturing sector and the wider business community. The objective of this event is to provide a safe and open platform, whereby participants from different sectors and industries can engage in meaningful conversations, to freely discuss pertinent business issues.

This year’s event, held on 21 February at SMF Auditorium, was well attended by more than 60 participants. The theme of the Dialogue was Business Model Innovation (BMI), in the context of achieving sustained business growth. Participants were clustered into four work groups to discuss the different factors that may affect successful BMI in local companies– “corporate culture and leadership”, “family business management vs professional management”, “industry’s external environment conditions and factors”, and “strategy development”.

The “corporate culture and leadership” work group discussed how setting up a robust risk and reward management system can encourage employees to be more creative and innovative in thinking about solutions to address business concerns. Some of the work group members also shared from their own management experiences that active employee engagement can be much more effective in cultivating creativity and innovation than monetary rewards.
The “family business management vs professional management” work group highlighted the issues related to the difficulty in balancing between family member business managers and professionally hired business managers, and shared some case studies of how different successful family-run businesses are managed. They also shared on the importance of talent management and succession planning in grooming the next generation of family member business managers.

Lastly, both the “industry’s external environment conditions and factors” and the “strategy development” delved into the discussion of government policy-level and macro-economic factors influencing companies’ ability and agility in continuously transforming their businesses to address new market opportunities.

Through the collective wisdom of all the participants, the Dialogue achieved its aim to provide substantial cross-sector and cross-industry takeaway learning, so that every participant can go back better equipped with the knowledge on BMI that could be applied to their companies.

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Dr Michael Teng, Assistant Secretary-General of Singapore Manufacturing Federation, giving a demonstration on how David eventually defeated Goliath

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Mr Chang Phuan Heng, Senior Manager of SiPi, leading a table discussion on Corporate Culture and Leadership with participants

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The winning participants with the majority of votes for most insightful presentation