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Excelerate =SUM(it) 2022: Meet Our 3 Guest Keynote Speakers

April 6, 2022 Vena Solutions  
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“Learn continually. There’s always “one more thing” to learn.” Steve Jobs


If you ask any seasoned business leader about the key to success in their roles, they’ll likely emphasize the importance of learning—and with good reason. According to Steve Jobs—American business magnate, industrial designer and veteran keynote speaker—no matter how much you think you know, there will always be more to discover. Acquiring knowledge will always push you to be better, and the pursuit of lifelong learning is never wasted.

Lucky for us, in today’s digital world, learning and self-development is now easier than ever before. From webinars to podcasts and virtual events, there are an increasing number of new and innovative ways to help you sharpen your skills as the world of finance continues to evolve.

With this “always learning” approach in mind, Vena is excited to be back with our third annual virtual conference next month, taking place live and on-demand from May 9–13—and with a new name to boot.

New Year, New Name, New Things To Learn

“Vena Nation” week is now "Excelerate =SUM(it)." We like to think of it as an homage to the universal language of finance—spreadsheets. So, what else is new this year?

Well, first of all, this year it’s taking place from May 9–13. Excelerate =SUM(it) 2022 will double down on everything attendees have loved about Vena’s previous virtual conference experiences, but with more live and on-demand conversations, workshops, training, product demonstrations, thought leadership, games, prizes and opportunities to network with a community of 5,000+ like-minded professionals.

Vena's Excelerate =SUM(it) has been uniquely designed to bring together attendees from around the globe, allowing them to hear stories of resilience and innovation, the ongoing evolution of FP&A, the transformation of operations and how businesses can continue to unite people, processes, technology and data. 


Click here to FIND OUT what you can expect from Vena’s Excelerate =SUM(it) 2022



Secondly, for Vena’s customers and community of finance and operations professionals, there will be ample opportunities to connect with and gain insights from your network of peers, unite with other Excel nerds and earn CPE/CPD credits at live conversations, workshops and training sessions.

Finally, Vena’s Excelerate =SUM(it) 2022 is all about enabling finance, operations and business professionals to connect, collaborate and excel together as we collectively continue to navigate these challenging times of global uncertainty. Attendees can expect world-class sessions and interactive workshops on the topics that matter most to them—including best practices for agile budgeting, forecasting, scenario modeling, workforce planning, strategic business partnering, change management and more.

Last year we saw plenty of energy and engagement at the conference formerly known as “Vena Nation week”, but this year’s event promises to bring even more energy, even more insights, and even more inspiration.

Excelerate =SUM(it): Keynote Speaker Highlights

In case you haven’t already reserved your spot, this post will highlight just some of the world-renowned keynote speakers we have lined up to inspire you this year. 

Without further ado, here’s a sneak peek at just three luminaries who are eagerly waiting to speak to you. Packed with enthusiasm and new ideas, each keynote session promises to deliver insights you can use to help drive creativity, resilience and agility within your organization. 

Robert Cialdini, PhD
New York Times, Wall Street Journal and USA Today Bestselling Author, World-Renowned Psychologist and Keynote Speaker

Keynote Title: The Science of Ethical Influence
Date: Monday, May 9, 2022 at 11:30 AM ET

Dr. Robert Cialdini has spent his entire career conducting scientific research on what leads people to say “yes” to requests. The results of his research, his ensuing articles and New York Times bestselling books have earned him an acclaimed reputation as a respected scientist and engaging storyteller.

As a keynote speaker, Dr. Cialdini has earned a worldwide reputation for his ability to translate the science into valuable and practical actions. His on-stage stories are described as dramatic and indelible. For this reason, he’s frequently regarded as “The Godfather of Influence.”

In his Excelerate =SUM(it) keynote presentation, Dr. Cialdini will share his tips and best practices for building credibility, developing trusted relationships and how to effectively break down barriers to growth.

Dr. Cialdini is known globally as the foundational expert in the science of influence and how to apply it ethically in business. His Seven Principles of Persuasion have become a cornerstone for any organization serious about effectively increasing their influence. In acknowledgment of his outstanding research achievements and contributions in behavioral science, Dr. Cialdini was elected to the American Academy of Arts & Sciences in 2018 and the National Academy of Sciences in 2019.

His books—including Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion and Pre-Suasion—have sold more than seven million copies in 44 different languages. Fortune Magazine lists Influence in their “75 Smartest Business Books.” Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion is a result of years of study into the reasons that people comply with requests in business settings.

Priya Parker
Strategic Advisor and Bestselling Author of The Art of Gathering: How We Meet and Why it Matters







Keynote Title: The Art of Gathering
Time: Wednesday, May 11, 2022 at 11 AM ET

Priya Parker is helping us take a deeper look at how anyone can create collective meaning in modern life, one gathering at a time. She is a facilitator, strategic advisor, acclaimed author of The Art of Gathering: How We Meet and Why it Matters and the host of the New York Times podcast “Together Apart”. Priya has spent 15 years helping leaders and communities have complicated conversations about community, identity and vision at moments of transition. 

During Priya’s keynote on Wednesday, May 11, she’ll be sharing practical guidance on navigating hybrid work environments—including strategies to cultivate informality, build trust and stop feeling “over-Zoomed”. Expect to hear Priya’s speech in the format of an intimate fireside chat, complete with a lively Q&A session at the end. 

Priya’s bestseller, The Art of Gathering: How We Meet and Why It Matters, has been named a business book of the year by Amazon, Esquire Magazine, NPR, the Financial Times and Bloomberg. Additionally, Priya has spoken on the TED Main Stage and her TEDx talk on “purpose” has been viewed over one million times. 

Priya is also a founding member of the Sustained Dialogue Campus Network, a member of the World Economic Forum Global Agenda Council on New Models of Leadership, and a Senior Expert at Mobius Executive Leadership. She studied organizational design at M.I.T., public policy at the Harvard Kennedy School and political and social thought at the University of Virginia.

Chris Voss
Former FBI Lead Hostage Negotiator, Founder and CEO of The Black Swan Group

Keynote Title: The Art of Negotiation
Time: Friday, May 13, 2022, 12 PM ET

Intrigued to hear what Chris has to share during his Excelerate =SUM(it) keynote speech? So are we. We can’t wait to hear what this expert negotiator and decorated FBI veteran has to share with us in his session, “The Art of Negotiation”, where you’ll learn how to move a conversation along, startle people in the right way, uncover what someone’s real motivation is, and why “yes” is the last thing you ever want to hear.

Author of Never Split The Difference: Negotiating As If Your Life Depended On It, Chris Voss has used his many years of experience in international crises and high-stakes negotiations to develop a unique program that applies these globally proven techniques to the business world.

Prior to 2008, Chris was the lead international kidnapping negotiator for the Federal Bureau of Investigation, as well as the FBI’s hostage negotiation representative for the National Security Council’s Hostage Working Group. During his government career, he also represented the U.S. Government at two international conferences sponsored by the G8 as an expert in kidnapping. Additionally, Chris served as the lead Crisis Negotiator for the New York City Division of the FBI.

During Chris’s 24-year tenure at the Bureau, he was trained in the art of negotiation by the FBI, Scotland Yard and Harvard Law School. He’s also a recipient of the Attorney General’s Award for Excellence in Law Enforcement and the FBI Agents Association Award for Distinguished and Exemplary Service.

Chris has taught business negotiation in the MBA program as an adjunct professor at the University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business and at Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business. He’s also taught business negotiation at Harvard University, guest lectured at The Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, The IMD Business School in Lausanne, Switzerland and The Goethe School of Business in Frankfurt. 


Want to check out the COMPLETE EXCELERATE =SUM(IT) 2022 agenda? Click here


Add Up to More, Together in 2022

With more than 50 speakers, 35+ live conversations, 30 on-demand sessions, 20 live and on-demand training workshops and product demonstrations, 10 keynotes and more—join us at Vena’s all-new Excelerate =SUM(it) for finance, operations professionals and business leaders. 

Register for FREE today and prepare to sit back, relax, learn and enjoy the show—all while powering your personal, professional and business growth. Learning new FP&A skills doesn’t get any easier or more exciting than this.

Excelerate =SUM(it) 2022
Excelerate Your Growth

Join 5,000+ professionals at Vena’s third annual virtual conference to excelerate your personal, professional and business growth.

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