BTOES Insights Official
November 09, 2016

THOUGHT LEADER: Beth Schmidt, Mutual of Omaha

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Beth Schmidt, VP of Process & Process Management will be tackling Culture Transformation at the Business Transformation & Operational Excellence World Summit (BTOES17). We caught up with Beth to learn more about her speaking session, 'The Critical Role of Culture in Strategy Execution'.
Tell us about your key responsibilities and roles at Mutual of Omaha.

I have responsibility for the analysis and delivery of software development projects, primarily in support of New Business processes. I also have a team of lean process improvement facilitators who engage in everything from major business unit transformation to project process mapping. In addition, I am a certified culture shaping facilitator and Master Culture Champion at the company.

What are the critical challenges your presentation will address?

Too often, when a company shifts their strategy, they fail to realize the impact the culture can have on their success in trying to achieve a new strategy. A new strategy with an old culture creates tension which can cripple change efforts.

After your presentation, what are you hoping the attendees will take away with them?

Insights about why they may have struggled or are currently struggling with transformation efforts of any kind, but in particular, Strategy changes. I hope they leave with enough curiosity to do some research on their own or look more deeply into this issue.

What have been the biggest developments in Operational Excellence in the last 12 months, within your organization?

Even Process Improvement efforts need process improvements. Our OpEx community organized a "catchball" activity where participants brainstormed ideas for continuous improvements. We are starting to form communities within the organization focused on specific improvement areas, such as Education.

How do you see Operational Excellence developing over the next 5-10 years within your organization?

2016 was a year of growth for our OpEx teams in that we are becoming more self-sufficient in leading and teaching the principles. I believe we will continue to evolve and the roles of our process-focused team members will be in higher demand across a greater band of services. Our company is going through major transformation, so it's difficult to project that far out given our current pace of change.

What 3 key learnings would you like to takeaway from this conference?

1. What are other companies doing?

2. What more could I be doing to be even more effective?

3. Who should I connect with and network with going forward?

Beth Schmidt is the Vice President of Process and Project Management at Mutual of Omaha.  She has responsibility for the analysis and delivery of projects that support New Business processes. She also has a team of lean process improvement facilitators who engage in everything from major business unit transformation to project process mapping. You can learn more about Beth's role in the summit here.


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