New York Times Bestselling Co-author of The Decoded Company
– Brian Fetherstonhaugh, Chairman & CEO OgilvyOne Worldwide, on Yes We Did!
Rahaf Harfoush is the co-founder of Red Thread Inc, a consulting agency that provides clients with out-of-the-box thinking to tackle strategic challenges. Formerly, she was the Associate Director of the Technology Pioneer Programme at the World Economic Forum in Geneva, Switzerland where she researched and identified start-ups that were using technology to improve the state of the world. Harfoush was responsible for managing the Web & IT category of the programme and in integrating the companies within her portfolio into the Forum's global network, various initiatives and regional events, such as Davos, the Annual Meeting in Switzerland, and the Annual Meeting of New Champions in China.
Harfoush is a Global Ambassador for the Sandbox Network, a community of exceptional entrepreneurs under the age of 30. She is on the Board of Directors of Taking IT Global, a non-profit that enables the world's largest community of youth to create positive changes in their cities. She is also on the Advisory Board of OneLeap.to, a site that helps connect young people to business leaders.
In August 2008, she joined Barack Obama's New Media Team at the Chicago headquarters as a full-time volunteer during the Presidential election campaign. In 2009, she published a book about her experiences titled Yes We Did! An Insider's Look at How Social Media Built the Obama Brand. She is also the co-author of New York Times bestseller The Decoded Company: Know Your Talent Better Than You Know Your Customers, which explores how big data can increase employee success and satisfaction, and encourage corporate growth. She is currently working on her third book, entitled ArchiTechs: How to Live, Work & Govern in a HyperConnected World.
Harfoush was also the Research Coordinator for the best-selling Wikinomics: How Mass Collaboration Changes Everything (Tapscott 2006), and contributor to both Grown Up Digital: How the Net Generation is Changing Your World (Tapscott 2008) and Everything I Needed to Know About Business I Learned from a Canadian (Brody 2008).
The Decoded Company: Know Your Talent Better Than You Know Your Customers
Marking the most significant change to the workplace in decades, companies in search of competitive advantage are starting to apply the power of big data to learn about their employees. But as they experiment with this new technology with little precedent to follow, how can they maximize its potential benefits effectively and ethically? In this talk, Rahaf Harfoush demonstrates how transformational companies are customizing data-driven cultures for their employees to achieve higher productivity, retention, and profits. Rather than treating your people as interchangeable resources, you’ll learn how to apply a combination of self-reported and ambient data to develop a “sixth sense” about your people. The result? Increased agility and speed, evidenced-based decision making, decreased bureaucracy, happier employees, and the ability to predict problems before they occur. Once “Decoded,” companies can understand and optimize systematically, and outpace competitors who cling to the management tools that predate today’s information age. You’ll transform technology into a coach that learns from your whole organization’s base of experiences and applies those insights in real-time to training, development, recruiting, and even project management processes. Once you do, you’ll unlock the potential of your people as never before with customer satisfaction, and corporate growth sure to follow.
ArchiTech Revolution: HealthCare
For as long as we can remember, we have placed our health in the hands of our healthcare practitioner. Today, we are seeing a new age where patients are informed and a second opinion is only a google search away. From patients who can publicly rate their doctor and hospital experiences to insurance companies who use social media to determine knowledge of pre-existing conditions in their client's claims, the health care industry is going through a period of increased transparency and disruption.
Using the latest case studies and research, this presentation will answer the following questions:
- How is collaborative technology changing patients' attitudes and management of their own well being?
- Can the creation of micro-niche communities promote greater healing?
- How are mobile apps helping patients make better decisions?
- How are mobile apps helping health care practitioners refine and perfect their skills?
- What can health institutions do to protect their brands in this new reputation economy?
- What are the policies necessary for both patients/practitioners to engage in social media without compromising ethics, privacy, or putting their employers at risk?
- How can we cope with (mis)information overload especially when diagnosing ourselves?
ArchiTech Revolution: Education
Do we really need a university degree? Billionaire Peter Thiel doesn't think so—and he's not alone. In a world where information travels faster than the speed of light can we still rely on institution that can't seem to keep up? In this presentation, Rahaf Harfoush will examine the challenges being faced by the education institutions as well as some of the start-ups that are disrupting the way we learn. From tuition-free online universities, to an enormous video-on-demand online tutoring platform there are now new ways to pursue a higher education.
- What are the risks and opportunities for educators in this space?
- How is technology being used to make education (and educators) more accountable and transparent?
- What are some of the innovations that are improving classrooms and lecture halls around the world?
- What are the latest and greatest innovative startups in education?
- How is technology impacting the way we learn?
- What will the schools of tomorrow look like?
ArchiTech Revolution: Politics
We all know the impact social media can have in a political campaign, but thanks to the incredible speed of innovation, that's just the beginning. From the Wikileaks' cablegate scandal which revealed the confidential cables of US Diplomats to the use of Facebook to rally supporters during the Arab Spring in Egypt, we are living in a world where the playbook of politics are changing. Using case-studies and the latest research, this keynote presentation will answer the following questions:
- How is technology impacting geo-political agendas?
- What does Diplomacy 2.0 look like?
- How are governments around the world legislatively dealing with these issues?
- What are the risks we face in the age of cyber-terrorism?
- How are activists both empowered and threatened using these tools?
- What are the new roles for multinational companies in this new global dialogue?
The New Way to Work, Learn, and Govern in a Hyper-connected World
What happens when our institutions —workplaces, government, education systems—no longer connect with the people they're meant to engage? In the blink of an eye, our social norms have changed. New technologies and social platforms make it easier than ever for people to connect and collaborate. Simply put: Our way of life is outpacing our institutional models, many of which haven't changed in decades. Schools, corporations, and government agencies are now scrambling to catch up. In this revelatory talk, Rahaf Harfoush asks, What happens when businesses are unable to meet the expectations of consumers, competitors, and stakeholders? When governments no longer represent their constituents? When education is dwarfed by innovation? With case studies, original research, and her trademark accessibility, Harfoush outlines how we've outgrown the way we live—and how best to adapt, reposition, and move forward.
The Decoded Company: Know Your Talent Better Than You Know Your Customers
Google amazes us by generating answers before we’ve even finished asking a question. Facebook curates our uniquely individual newsfeeds. Spotify and Netflix use learning algorithms to customize our experience. At home, we choose companies that have figured out how to personalize our news, shopping, entertainment, travel, and learning needs.
At most workplaces, it's still one-size-fits-all policies, processes, and tools. Yet companies like Google, Starbucks, and Whole Foods have turned their algorithms inward to decode their talent. Their goal is not to get the better of their talent, but to empower the best from their people.
The Decoded Company distills how this process works into three transformative ideas.
· Technology Can be a Coach, personalizing processes to the individual based on experience and offering training interventions precisely at the teachable moment.
· Data Can Be a Sixth Sense, codifying organizational battle scars using actual code that watches your blind spots and gives your people a decision making superpower.
· The third is that Engineered Ecosystems will prevail over hierarchies, reducing bureaucracy, increasing transparency, and be wildly inspiring to teams.
Yes We Did
The Obama campaign's mastery of social media for everything from fundraising to volunteer coordination has been widely reported. Until now, there hasn't been an in-depth analysis of how they did it. In Yes We Did, new media strategist and campaign headquarters volunteer Rahaf Harfoush gives us a behind the-scenes look at the campaign's use of technology, from its earliest days through election night. She reveals strategic insights organizations can apply to their own brands. Discover how unwavering strategic vision and collaborative technologies--email, blogs, social networks, Twitter, and SMS messaging--empowered a formidable online community to help elect the world's first "digital" President.
- Politics Ta-Nehisi Coates, Refusing to Ignore "the Same Old Racism," Named to Politico 50
- Innovation First Look: Work Smarter with Jeremy Gutsche's New Book, Better and Faster
- Work Up Close & Personal: Susan Pinker On Face-to-Face Contact and Happiness
- Innovation Learning through Failure: Cirque du Soleil's Welby Altidor on Innovation