The Better by Design CEO Summit 2017 is a two-day, inspirational conference that brings to life the theory and concepts of design in business, and exposes you to global best practice in design thinking and innovation from the world's best thinkers and practitioners.

This year the Summit will focus on developing a culture of innovation within your organisation and how to link that to what your customer actually wants.

We look forward to seeing you in March.

Register Now

14 and 15 of March 2017

Day 1

7.30am - 8.30am Registration
8.30am – 5.00pm followed by networking drinks & dinner.

Day 2

8.30am – 4.00pm
followed by networking drinks.

Villa Maria Estate, Auckland

$2000 + GST – Single Registration
$1600 + GST – Multiple Registrations

View the common questions

Read more about our CEO Summit 2017 speakers

Dr. Tom Waller

Senior Vice President of Whitespace™ at lululemon athletica

Lululemon, a $3b Canadian company, has changed the way women dress by unveiling athleisure to the world. Tom heads up the 30 strong team charged with predicting and forming the future of women’s fashion. He will talk about the process, techniques, culture and conditions to make this happen.

David Gram

Senior Innovation Director at LEGO Group

How will kids play in 5 years time? Lego turned around their business with a culture that links innovation to consumer insights that they are able to predict consumer behaviour though in home immersion, and truly understanding the play dynamic between child, parent, and toy.

Noreen Chadha

General Manager of citizenM

Noreen is leading the formation of a hotel group that sets out to create a new experience for the next generation of traveller – the mobile citizen. Customer insights have resulted in rethinking the hotel experience from the ground up, focusing on details that matter most to their target market. How do you maintain a culture with the customer, Citizen M, at the centre of every decision?

"I think New Zealand as a nation is right on the cusp of its next major leap frog move. This nation of leaders could change the world."

Keith Yamashita, Founder and Chairman SYPartners.

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Ryan Holmes

Founder and CEO of Hootsuite

How do you scale a social media agency from 3 to 1,000 people? Ryan Holmes kept a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship alive as Hootsuite grew rapidly to become the world’s most widely used social relationship platform, with 15-million-plus users.

Anna Curzon

Chief Partner Officer, Xero NZ

How does the #Human culture at Xero nurture innovation and teamwork to result in the constant delivery of new products and services that make technology accessible to small business around the world?

Tom Kelley


Bringing Innovation Alive. As partner at one of the world’s best known innovation consultancies, Tom will share insights gained from years of work with leading international companies, of how to foster a culture of innovation and tap into the creative potential within organisations.

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Claudia Batten

New Zealand Trade and Enterprise

Industry 4.0 is almost upon us. How will your industry be affected and how fast? Claudia Batten, digital entrepreneur and supporter of New Zealand businesses in the US, is adamant we can’t failure-proof ourselves and it’s pointless to even try. Find out about squiggling and to successfully navigate the non–linear world we are moving into.

Chris Hacker

formerly Herman Miller

There is no single way of building a culture of innovation. Chris has worked with leading botanical hair and skin care brand Aveda through its acquisition by Estee Lauder, consumer product giant Johnson & Johnson and most recently with furniture design specialist Herman Miller. Drawing on his experience as Head of Design across four very different innovative companies, Chris will talk about three visions of culture.

Simon Mainwaring

CEO of We First

Understanding the ‘why’ of what we do in business creates a compelling connection with customers. Through his global brand firm, We First, Simon has helped a variety of significant companies discover and articulate their ‘why’. He will share insights into how successful organisations have brought their purpose alive both internally and externally.

Spending time with the globally talented people the Summit attracts will fire you up and expand your thinking. The Summit is one of the best few days you'll spend onshore.

Rod Drury, CEO Xero.

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Leland Maschmeyer

Chief Creative Officer of Chobani

Craft is a “nice to have.” Not a strategic concern. Or is it? In any given market, parity is on the rise as competitors struggle with the same problems, sift through the same data for answers, arrive at the same conclusions, write the same strategies, and create the same solutions. Leaders now confront a simple but fraught question: How do you deliver incredible craft at incredible scale?

Peter Cullinane

Founder Lewis Road Creamery

How do you reinvigorate a declining FMCG category and create a culture of customer centric design excellence? The success of Lewis Road Creamery is attributable to more than clever branding and marketing. Peter will describe how a challenger brand mentality inside the organisation continues to maintain a culture of innovation and excellence.

Loic Le Meur

Founder of

As an entrepreneur and investor, Loic knows what extraordinary people are made of, and understands the conditions and behaviours that help create their success. From his work with upcoming leaders and his own personal experiences, he will explain the factors that make up a culture of innovation.

Daniel Flynn

Co-founder and Managing Director of Thankyou

Can young, edgy marketers change the world? Daniel Flynn has created a new hyper disruptive business model with a substantial market share. This is a purpose-driven business that is making the world a better place. Daniel will share the why, how and who behind his dynamic philanthro-entrepreneurial culture.