Thought Leaders Retreat


Provocative insights, optimistic perspectives and new ideas about tackling an uncertain future for the industry

Last month, together with LeadDog Marketing Group we presented the SBJ Thought Leaders Retreat, an intimate networking conference for sports business executives.
We hosted prominent speakers, including Mary Wittenberg, Virgin Sport CEO (Chief Exercise Officer), Kevin Compton, Radar Partners and former owner of the San Jose Shark, and Malcolm Frank, CMO of Cognizant. All of the speakers offered provocative insights, optimistic perspectives and new ideas about facing an uncertain future in the sports industry.
As an off-the-record conference, the Thought Leaders Retreat inspired attendees to speak their minds openly with fellow industry leaders. The speakers, who had everyone buzzing, were agreed on one fascinating point: a certainty that we’ll see more changes in sports in the next ten years than we’ve experienced in the last 50.

Across a diverse range of topics, a couple which stood out included a belief that issues affecting the live fan experience could be fixed with better planning and communication between teams, venues and city leaders, and that there is a big push going on to attract more diverse talent to the industry. However, as Compton noted, the sports industry today can’t match the salaries being offered in the Silicon Valley.
Another feeling shared was that in general teams and properties, or rights holders, are too locked into historical thinking and processes that prevent them from trying new approaches. In addition, the attendees discussed the need for the sports industry to take bigger swings at key issues and to focus on driving innovation.
We were delighted to have collaborated with Sports Business Daily to hand pick the speakers and curate the content for this highly valuable event.