Unlock!: The Cranfield BGP Response Programme Un-conference

As we witness further lock-down measures being lifted, we still remain unsure about how things will plan out over the next 12 – 24 months. While we hoped it would be different, the reality sinks in: Nobody has all the answers. Nobody can – we’ve never been here before.

How will we run our businesses? What constraints will we be under? What demand will there be for what we sell? Why go back to “normal” anyway, why not try to go back to something better?

Over the last few months, we have all re-discovered the importance of peer-to-peer conversation and joint learning. At the Bettany Centre for Entrepreneurship, we will continue to play our role to lead and stimulate these conversations.

On the 7th July, we will be bringing SMEs and subject-matter experts together for an afternoon of fun, peer-to-peer learning and conversations to “unlock” some answers to the above questions.

The afternoon will be packed with knowledge across two slots around the following themes:

  • “Marketing and Sales”
  • “Management and Leadership”
  • “Money”
  • “Strategy”
  • “Me”

After each of the time slots - which are driven by participant input - we will be summarising and sharing the key takeaways from the five parallel sessions. Therefore, you will not only take away the learning from the two sessions that you have participated in, but will also have exposure to all of the understanding from the ten sessions available on the day.

You will also receive access to all recordings after the event, allowing you to re-watch all of the content and discussions.

13:00 – 13:10


Opening Remarks and Welcome from Professor Tom Stephenson and Dr Stephanie Hussels

Outline of the Day from Sabrina Sommer and Chloe Flatt

13:10 – 13:40

Keynote: Is your business covid secure – and what does that mean?
Jane Lambert – ECG training

13:40 – 14:40

Slot 1 – Parallel sessions

  • Marketing/Sales: Marketing your way out of Covid with Jonathan Wagstaffe - Growva
  • Leadership/Management: Making sense of motivation for leadership excellence with
    Guy Shackleton – Horizon 37
  • Money/Markets: Risky Business? With Ray Abercromby – Smith and Williamson
  • Strategy: One crisis to another crisis? How not to stall your own growth with Adam Cox
  • Me: Mental health through Covid-19 and beyond with Raymond Sheehy

14:40 – 15:00

Key take-aways

A quick round up from all five sessions and what you can take away from it

15:00 – 15:10

Tea Break

15:10 – 15:40

Keynote: Where are we now? An economic update from Professor Joe Nellis
– Cranfield School of Management

15:40 – 16:40

Slot 2 – Parallel sessions

  • Marketing/Sales: Getting back on the selling front foot with Lara Morgan
  • Leadership/Management: 'Waiting out the storm' is not an option –
    A strategic approach to organisational resilience 
    with Professor David Denyer and Mike Sutliff
    – Cranfield School of Management
  • Money/Markets: Going Against the Flow with Ray Abercromby – Smith and Williamson
  • Strategy: Do I want an NED? With Professor Ruth Bender
    – Cranfield School of Management
  • Me: Imagine a moment in time: defining your vision post Covid-19 with Debra Charles
    – Novacroft

16:40 – 17:00

Key take-aways

A quick round up from all five sessions and what you can take away from it

17:00 – 17:30

Closing comments and virtual networking

Closing of the day and opportunity for virtual networking

Confirmed speakers

Keynote speakers

Professor Joe Nellis

Caroline Southgate

Slot 1 speakers

Leadership Resilience – Simon Hammett

Preparing for a crisis – how to protect your reputation and ensure that your business comes back stronger – Dan Gerella

Slot 2 speakers

Using Human Centred Design techniques to help your business adjust to new customer behaviour' – Kevin Yuen

Preparing for negotiations – Mike Lander

Managing supply chain uncertainty arising from geopolitical disruptions – Professor Emel Aktas


We have two types of tickets available, a single ticket for individuals and a company ticket which allows you to bring 8 colleagues, customers and friends.

For every ticket sold, we will be inviting participants from the charity sector to join us for free on the day.

Standard tickets: £50.

Company tickets: £200 for 8 spaces.

Access to all recordings post-event is also included in the ticket price.

Tickets can be purchased until midnight on Sunday 5th July.


Unlock!: The Un-conference truly will be what you make of it. We know that in the BGP universe, we have many great thinkers and problem solvers, and we know that everybody running a business has questions right now. At the university, we have some outstanding academic staff, and we will ask them to join the event and bring their expertise if that’s what people request. So, tell us what you want to discuss, come along on 7 July, and let’s help each other get our businesses ready for the future.