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ASAP Welcomes New Board Members

Posted By Michael J. Burke, Friday, August 21, 2020

ASAP is extremely pleased to announce the appointment of four new members to its board of directors in recent months.

The new ASAP board members are: Kriti Kapoor, former head of social media and online communities, customer service and support at Microsoft and currently the founder of Automation Ready Inc.; Knut Sturmhoefel, CA-AM, vice president and global head of alliance management at Novartis; and Sally Wang, group vice president, global alliances and partnerships at International SOS. In addition, within the past six months Lucinda (Cindy) Warren, vice president of Janssen business development, neuroscience, for Janssen Business Development/Johnson & Johnson Innovation, has also joined the ASAP board.

“We’re very excited to have Kriti, Knut, and Sally join Cindy and our excellent group of board members as our newest additions to ASAP’s board of directors,” said Michael Leonetti, CSAP, president and CEO of ASAP. “They truly enhance and diversify the depth and breadth of experience we have on our outstanding board of directors, and they bring a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the association which I know will help us immeasurably as we move forward into the future, with all the challenges of these times. I expect they can help us by serving on some of our board’s standing committees, such as membership, finance, and editorial, and through their financial and operational oversight, including approval of the association’s annual budget. And most of all, they’ll come to the table with fresh thinking and new ideas, and we’ll reap the benefits of their experience and knowledge as they contribute to the ongoing governance, growth, and success of ASAP.”

Kriti Kapoor’s long tech career includes stints at Microsoft, HP, and the hypergrowth automation startup UiPath. In her technology marketing and customer care leadership roles, she’s been a builder of online communities and diverse, high-performing teams, not only in the US but in Asia Pacific, Japan, and EMEA. She has a proven track record in her career of successfully executing across multiple functions covering customer service, field and regional marketing, product management, and technology sales, driven by data analytics and customer insights and partnerships. Kriti holds an MBA from the London Business School, and a BSc in computer science from the National University of Singapore. She serves as an advisory board member of the CMO Council Asia Pacific, and was an executive sponsor of HP’s Americas Women’s Leadership Council.

Knut Sturmhoefel is vice president and global head of alliance management at Novartis. He has worked in business development at Novartis since 2005, with broad experience in partnering and deal transactions including more than seven years in alliance management. Knut has a background in research and drug development across different therapeutic areas, including immuno-oncology and ophthalmology. He previously worked at the German Cancer Research Center, as Fogarty Fellow at the US National Institutes of Health, and at two biotech companies in the Boston area (Genetics Institute and Lexigen) before joining Novartis in 2002 as a project manager. He earned his PhD in immunology from Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg and holds a master’s certificate in project management from George Washington University.

Sally Wang’s career spans over 20 years in operations, business development, product development, alliance management, and strategy. She currently manages global strategic partnerships for International SOS as group vice president of global alliances and partnerships. Sally works closely with the International SOS senior leadership team and business units globally to identify, develop, and operate critical business relationships to help International SOS grow its capability and global footprint. She and her team manage a portfolio of global partners that includes technology, security, mental health, travel, and professional service companies. She has built a strong partnership division at International SOS, which has been both a winner and a finalist in ASAP’s Alliance Excellence Awards. Sally also advises nonprofit organizations on strategy and partnerships management, and currently serves as vice chair for St. Christopher’s Foundation for Children, an organization in Philadelphia that improves children’s health and dental care through community outreach and education.

Lucinda (Cindy) Warren has been a featured speaker at past ASAP events, including most recently the 2019 ASAP BioPharma Conference and 2019 ASAP European Summit. She heads the Neuroscience Business Development Team at Janssen, which includes scientific finding, licensing transactions, mergers, acquisition, out-licensing, divestitures, and alliance management. With over 24 years of broad industry experience, Cindy began her pharma career in Canada. In 1999, she joined the Johnson & Johnson Family of Companies and has held various US and global roles of increasing responsibility, including sales, marketing, new product development, alliance management, and business development leadership. Just prior to joining the Janssen Business Development Leadership Team, Cindy led the Immunology Business Unit in Australia, returning to the US in 2014 as vice president of alliance management, Janssen, responsible for leading the total pharmaceutical portfolio of collaborations. She received her bachelor of science degree from the University of Alberta, Canada.

As ASAP welcomes these four new board members, we also say goodbye to some longtime ASAP stalwarts who have recently stepped down from the board: Russ Buchanan, CSAP, former vice president of global channel strategy alliances and operations at Xerox and chairman emeritus of ASAP’s board; Donna Peek, CSAP, former vice president of global alliances at Genpact, who steps down as board secretary; and Steve Twait, CSAP, vice president of alliance and integration management at AstraZeneca, who steps aside as board treasurer. We’re very grateful for their service on the board and for all their contributions to ASAP. We wish Russ and Donna all the best in their retirement, and we’re thankful that we’ll continue to have the support and leadership behind the scenes from Steve.

Tags:  ASAP Board of Directors  AstraZeneca  Automation Ready Inc.  Donna Peek  Genpact  International SOS  Janssen Business Development/Johnson & Johnson Inn  Knut Sturmhoefel  Kriti Kapoor  Lucinda (Cindy) Warren  Novartis  Russ Buchanan  Sally Wang  Steve Twait  Xerox 

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“Golden Minutes”: How International SOS and Workplace Options Coalesced to Help Clients Quickly in Moments of Crisis

Posted By Jon Lavietes, Tuesday, June 2, 2020

Later this month, we will publish the next profile in our series of exclusive online articles examining the 2020 ASAP Alliance Excellence Award nominees. Over the course of the last four months, ASAP members have read the inspiring stories of Banistmo and Reciclar Paga’s groundbreaking recycling program in Panama, PTC’s series of system integrator–run IoT demo centers, the transformation of Blue Yonder’s alliance program, and the versatile Deloitte-Genpact alliance that is ready to storm the marketplace. (ASAP members can read these pieces in the previous four issues of Strategic Alliance Monthly, which can be accessed via the association’s Member Resource Library.)

In a few weeks, ASAP members will learn how International SOS and Workplace Options teamed up to bundle the former’s medical and security services with the latter’s emotional support offerings to deliver comprehensive services to globally mobile workforces in dozens of countries. As readers will discover, this collaboration isn’t just delivering complementary resources to customers—it is eroding the stigma around acknowledging and treating mental health disorders, such as anxiety, depression, and PTSD, that is still prevalent in many cultures around the world.

If we could do it all over again, we might have considered running this piece in the most recent issue of Strategic Alliance Monthly—in putting this feature together, we learned that May is mental health awareness month. However, while hindsight may be 20/20, foresight is one of this blog’s main functions. As we do with many of our Strategic Alliance Quarterly features, we thought we would dedicate this post to some fascinating facts about the International SOS–Workplace Options alliance that didn’t make the cut in the forthcoming June edition of ASAP’s monthly online-only outlet.

Harmonized Work Styles Result in Smooth Client Service

In ASAP circles, talk often turns to how to make two organizations work seamlessly as one. More specifically, we oftentimes speak abstractly about recognizing and reconciling the different “worldviews,” “assumptions,” or “organizational cultures” that companies bring to the table. These themes came up often in the discussion of how these two organizations harmonized their operations. Sally Wang, group vice president of global partnerships and alliances at International SOS, discussed the differences between how her organization’s medical personnel and Workplace Options’ counselors tackle patient cases.

“Our doctors are not psychologists or social workers, who specialize in mental health. Workplace Options counselors aren’t doctors.  You tend to look at the situation from different perspectives,” she said.

The two sides must be in lockstep because time is of the essence with inbound calls. Wang noted that cases of this nature tend to be very intense—many come in the context of heavy physical and emotional support needs. International SOS reps have “golden minutes” to accurately capture details and convey them to their Workplace Options counterparts. Otherwise, frustrated and potentially panicked callers may abandon hope and give up, according to Wang.

“If it is not done smoothly, the member may say, ‘It’s too much work. I don’t really need it,’ and we lose an opportunity to provide holistic care,” she said.

Mary Ellen Gornick, senior strategy advisor at Workplace Options, added that having a dedicated team of counselors from her organization who understand the complexity of issues International SOS clients face has been critical to the partnership's success.

“In addition to having expertise in mental health, these counselors are also skilled at responding to the unique needs of someone who may be traveling frequently or in a remote location or high-threat area,” she shared. “That experience makes a tremendous difference in how counselors are able to tailor the support they offer.”

Review, Realign, Rinse, Repeat

Wang’s colleague Molly Walsh, program manager for the strategic alliances and partnerships group at International SOS, reviews client cases and conducts operational alignment calls each month to discuss situations that might have thrown one or both parties for a loop and explore how to course-correct for similar instances in the future. The two companies have each gotten very comfortable with their partner’s constructive criticism. 

If there are problems, we’re very up front in talking about it,” said Wang.

International SOS and Workplace Options are nominated for the Alliance Excellence Award in the Corporate Social Responsibility category. They are competing with:

  • Telecommunications giant Ericsson, which delivered and maintained Internet connectivity to rescue workers in the immediate aftermath of two natural disasters, a devastating cyclone in Mozambique and Hurricane Dorian in the Bahamas, as part of the United Nations’ World Food Programme (WFP) Emergency Telecommunications Cluster initiative;
  • Global consulting firm Protiviti’s “i on Hunger” program, which delivered 10 million meals to individuals suffering food insecurity;
  • Analytics software vendor SAS’s Nordic Hackathon, which convened partners Knowit, Microsoft, Intel, and Evry to mine data for a wide variety of social causes, such as reuniting displaced families via facial recognition technology; and   
  • The aforementioned Banistmo–Reciclar Paga partnership.

The June Strategic Alliance Monthly will be sent to ASAP members prior to the 2020 ASAP Global Alliance Summit, where the Alliance Excellence Award winners will be unveiled. Registration for the Summit, which will take place virtually June 23 through June 25, is still open

Tags:  alliances  Ericsson  International SOS  Internet connectivity  Mary Ellen Gornick  operations  organizational cultures  partner  partnership success  partnerships  Sally Wang  SAS Nordic Hackathon  United Nations’ World Food Programme  Workplace Options 

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A Partnership to Benefit the Whole: International SOS/Control Risks Aligns Security and Pandemic Planning for First-Rate Emergency Services

Posted By Cynthia B. Hanson, Wednesday, June 1, 2016

When International SOS and Control Risks joined forces in 2008 to tackle some of the biggest emergencies on the planet, they proved a centuries-old adage:  Two heads are, indeed, better than one. The innovative, highly efficient venture thrived to such a degree that they received ASAP’s Individual Alliance Excellence Award for “excellence in planning, implementation, and results of a single alliance” at the 2016 Global Alliance Summit Alliance Excellence Awards. The March Summit, “Partnering Everywhere: Expert Leadership for the Ecosystem,” was held at the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center, National Harbor, Maryland.  

Several days after the awards, International SOS/Control Risks provided a lively session, “Executing in the Field: The Key to a Sustainable Alliance,” which offered a window into the unique partnership. The goal of the alliance was to completely eliminate competition that cropped up when International SOS was solely focused on security planning and Control Risks on pandemic planning. 

The partnership resulted in joint mitigation risk services that provide travel security and medical assistance for clients around the world from regional centers in London, Dubai, Paris, Philadelphia, and Singapore as well as 900 remote sites and clinics. Specialist execution units offer advanced security training, risk forecasting, and emergency support worldwide; assistance centers and regional aviation units provide evacuation services in 150 countries. 

Here are some excerpts from the session about the history and intent of the alliance from Sally Wang, vice president, global alliances & partnerships at International SOS; John Maltby, director, group strategy of alliances at Control Risks; Richard Fenning, CEO of Control Risks (remotely via video). 

Wang: SOS was started in a basement 30 years ago. Now it’s a company of 11,000 people, half of which are medical personnel—1,000 are doctors. Our job is not to tell a company not to travel. Our company is an educator so the client can make the decision. 

Maltby: Control Risks started out 40 years ago in a jail when one of the founders was illegally detained in a Colombian prison. The origins of the company are in kidnapping and negotiations, which eventually evolved into mitigating security risks. Our clients are in complex business environments. 

Wang: SOS put out an ad about nine years ago when we were a medical company building out security. We thought we could do it on our own with 40 people, but we decided to grow it organically with a leading security firm to take it to another level. 

Maltby: Control Risks had a vision for medical security as well as security for ex-patriots, and we viewed SOS as competition in our new turf.  We had clients who were seeking emergency medical support and security planning from the same association, so we looked at partnering options and approached SOS, which had clients looking for a similar combination of services. 

Fenning: The biggest challenge was at the beginning, explaining to clients how this alliance was going to work. A whole series of events tested it, such as the Arab Spring and mobile attacks. There was no room for misalignment. We helped clients with difficult situations around the world, such as an unfortunate accident with three students killed in a bus crash. We immediately deployed an incident management team that pulled together two teams from Bogota and Texas. Another example was in Honduras, which wanted to get a group of people out of the country when six Quebecers were killed on a humanitarian trip. Through the testing process, the alliance was found to be durable and sustainable. 

Wang: The unique design of our alliance is for competing organizations with overlapping pieces as a joint venture in the middle. We decided not to give it its own separate name and identity: It is International SOS/Control Risks. How do you make sure of alignment? Customer feedback, brand strength, measuring business generations. If you don’t have it from both sides, you don’t have an alliance. You need to measure it; you need to look at value. If you were to get sick or have a security crisis, you only use one number, one app. Your security department is aligned. We have strong incentives built in to drive the business for each other. We buy each other’s services. It’s an expectation if not a written requirement. We occasionally work with other firms after having a dialogue with Control Risks first. 

Tags:  alignment  alliance  Control Risks  International SOS  John Maltby  joint venture  mitigation risk services  pandemic planning  Richard Fenning  Sally Wang  security crisis  security training 

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