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Alfredo Tan

Speaker Exclusive

Toronto, ON

Innovative Executive, Senior Vice President & Managing Director, Loblaw Media

A thought-leader, change agent, and an impact-focused innovator, Alfredo has elevated world-class customer experiences, accelerated digital innovations, and transformed cultures within his organizations. 

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Lessons in Disruption, Innovation, & Success
What can we learn from Disruption, Innovation, & Success?

Alfredo Tan is a thought-leader, change agent, and an impact-focused innovator. He’s led companies through changing digital landscapes, evolving consumer expectations and behaviours. He’s held senior level roles with WestJet, Facebook, Instagram, Yahoo & Rogers Media.

In this inspiring presentation, Alfredo shares his lessons learned along the way on mentorship, risk taking, focus, and more.

Takeaways can include:

  • Success doesn’t happen overnight; it’s a journey that has no destination.
  • Hire intellectually curious people, those that thrive in ever changing environments. 
  • Avoid the ‘HIPPO’ influence
  • Empower people to run experiments without management overhead.
  • Today is the slowest rate of change we will ever experience again. 
Lessons Learned - Alfredo Tan's personal story

As a young immigrant to Canada from the Philippines, Alfredo wanted to be successful in his new country.  He spent his life in the pursuit of higher education and in sharing that knowledge whenever he could, rising to the highest levels of corporate leadership in a range of industries.  In this inspiring presentation, he shares his lessons learned along the way. 

Sample takeaways: 

Success involves taking risks, investment of time, grit, perseverance, and incredible focus.  

Your mentors and allies will support you & help you overcome some of our systemic challenges. 

Be endlessly curious and acknowledge there is always room to be better.  

Never forget or be ashamed of where you come from. 

Find ways to give back, every single day. No matter how small. Create the conditions to help others be as lucky as you have been.

On Innovation & Your Escape Velocity for Change

There are very few companies who don’t want to innovate. In fact, it is probably the most overused term in business today. Most companies and executives today conflate innovation and technology as being interchangeable. But innovation is more about culture, people and how organizations solve problems that can scale.  

Why can’t companies innovate? Why is failure so often the outcome despite having very talented teams? When things get hard, when there are significant challenges, competitive forces, harsh economic conditions, companies often revert to the way they have always done things —- institutional gravity. You fall victim to trying to push through using the same processes and activities that made you successful up to this point. However, that won’t get you to the future. The key is finding a way to reach a speed and direction for your organization to move towards and escape the gravity of what you have always done – Find your escape velocity.


The 4th Industrial revolution

The 4th Industrial revolution involves the merging of digital, physical, and biological systems. It isn’t science fiction; it is happening all around us. The last 20 years was the warm-up.

The future of medicine may come equally from the mathematics department as it does from science labs.

The future of education maybe fueled from start-ups and big tech and less from traditional academia.

Every industry, every function, every country will be affected in dramatic ways.

Today, is the slowest day we will ever experience again. Here is what is coming and what you need to do now to prepare.


The Future of Work

The competitive landscape has always been challenging. But what we have been predicting, what covid-19 made to be true, is that every company will become a digital enterprise. Which means, overnight, we are all competing in ways we can’t even imagine. No longer do we live in siloed environments. Automotive is competing equally with retail as it does in its own industry.

Consumer experiences, commerce, the war for talent and how we work is colliding across geography, industry, and time zones. The rules have changed literally overnight and will never return to what it was.

Here is why talent will want to come join you on your transformation journey and reasons why they won’t.

Audience reviews:

  • "A big thank you for encouraging the two way door mentality at Novartis - after your talk in December it started to creep into our vocab, but more importantly, it was followed by clear examples of where people were following it up with their actions. And I think your talk on Thursday will further embed it in our DNA as a company." - Novartis
  • “... thank you for your STELLAR opening keynote at the ACTE Montreal Summit last week. Myself, the ACTE leadership team and Summit attendees were super engaged with the content you presented and I know we all walked away with new insights and learnings. I especially appreciated your discussion on how internal culture has a big role to play when adapting to the technological change and disruption that will effect our industry." - ACTE
  • "Attended a live event with Alfredo as speaker. Absolutely incredible to hear how he works: creative, focused, seeks effective solutions with integrity, energy, and speed, and I found myself just wanting him to keep speaking. Truly incredible what he has all accomplished with genuine humility." - Audience member

Speaker Biography

A thought-leader, change agent, and an impact-focused innovator, Alfredo has led companies through changing digital landscapes, evolving consumer expectations, and behaviours. Currently, he is an Industry Professor at McMaster University and former Senior Vice-President of Strategy, Data and Products at Rogers Sports & Media. He’s also held roles as the Chief Marketing Officer and the first Chief Digital & Innovation Officer at WestJet Airlines. Alfredo is currently the Senior Vice President & Managing Director at Loblaw Media.

He led the teams responsible for all guest-facing digital experiences, technology, innovation, marketing, product management, data analytics & research to transform the guest experience and deliver over $2B in e-commerce revenue.

Tan is an Industry Professor in the Strategic Management Faculty at McMaster University where he teaches at the undergraduate, graduate level, and in The Directors College Innovation Governance program for Board Directors.

Until 2022, Tan was the Senior Vice-President of Strategy, Data and Products at Rogers Sports & Media. He leed the critical functions responsible for leading acceleration of the industry’s digital transformation. Strategy, M&A, Technology & Innovation, Research & Insights, Data Science & Analytics, Product Management and Global Technology Partnerships. Alfredo and his team are focused on building world class consumer experiences through integrated digital strategies, putting culture at the center of the transformation, creating a culture of experimentation, and using data to influence strategy, product development and partnerships.

A former Facebook & Instagram Executive, he was a founding team member of Facebook Canada in early 2009. He went on to work with the leadership team in Asia-Pacific in 2016 to help launch Facebook and Instagram in the Philippines as the first Country Manager. Similar management and leadership assignments took him throughout Southeast Asia (Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia & Indonesia) and Latin America (Mexico, Colombia, Argentina & Brazil), where he was responsible for building teams with a high-performance culture, driving operational excellence, strategic planning, client partnerships, and accelerated growth in emerging markets.

Alfredo was a former Senior Director at Yahoo! in Silicon Valley as a member of the Connected Life team, leading the teams responsible for the Rogers Yahoo! partnership across broadband, mobile, search and media. He also led the search marketing, business development and mobile product teams in the Canadian market. Previously he was at Sympatico MSN working in the Strategic Alliances and Business Development group. He started his career in Systems Engineering & Design at Bell Nexxia, a division of BCE Inc. 

He is also a frequently requested keynote speaker at leading Technology, Media, Marketing, Corporate and various Industry Conferences. He has been profiled and quoted in Forbes Magazine, Marketing Magazine, The Economist, Strategy Magazine, The Globe and Mail, and many other leading industry publications.

Alfredo currently sits on the Advisory Board on Innovation at McMaster University, is a member of the Leadership Council at the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics, sits on the Haskayne Business School Advisory Council at the University of Calgary. Alfredo was recognized with the Desmond Parker Outstanding Young Alumni Award from the University of Toronto, has been inducted into the McMaster University Alumni Gallery and is a recipient of the prestigious Arbor Award for his service to the University of Toronto. He is a founding member and executive of the Canadian Chapter of the Harvard Alumni Entrepreneurs Organization and a member of the Young President’s Organization (YPO).

Alfredo holds an Honours Bachelor of Science Degree in Forensic Science & Biology from the University of Toronto, an MBA with a specialization in Information Systems & Technology from McMaster University, and a Master of Laws (LL.M.) with a concentration in Innovation & Technology from the Faculty of Law at the University of Toronto. He is also a graduate of the Advanced Management Program (AMP) at the Harvard Business School. Alfredo is currently completing a Graduate Diploma (Masters-EQF Level 7) in Financial Strategy at Oxford University and a Graduate Certificate in Computer Science from the School of Engineering at Stanford University.

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