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Stretch Leadership
and Management

December 6-7, 2018


New speaker announcements below and more coming!

Lead, inspire, and change the game.

Stretch is a leadership and management conference to learn from the best and stretch yourself. Join us in Budapest, Hungary this December and get inspired by stories from leaders in great organizations as they talk about the challenges of leadership and management.


Carmen Simon

The Science of Stories That Spark Action

There has been so much hype lately on the impact of storytelling in business communication. We keep hearing the buzz about the brain being wired for stories. We know the importance of setting, character, and action. This is why we devour news, novels, and movies. We know all this. But there is so much more. For example, not all stories are created equal. While we tout the "memorability" factor of stories, it is possible for the human brain to forget them. How many stories do you really remember from the past week?

To influence others' action, we must ask: what makes a story memorable? And what is the optimal amount of narrative we can use when you communicate dry or technical information? After all, we want to be memorable and credible. Join this keynote to find out the latest brain science research on storytelling and how to best apply it to influence others in business settings. Specifically, you learn how to:

  1. Explain, from a brain science perspective, what makes a story forgettable.
  2. Use three science-based techniques that are mandatory to making any story memorable; and
  3. Provide the brain with elements it needs to encode a story so it is memorable long-term and actionable.

About Carmen
Robert Byssz

Robert has been leading the digital sales transformation of Philips Healthcare globally for over 3 years. In this transformation the company prepares more than 8000 commercial experts in over 100 countries for an agile and truly customer focused approach to collaborate with its Customers.

Philips started their large transformation in 2011, thus became a successful leader of digital transformation beyond its own industry.
By now results are not only visible in the financial performance of the company, but impacted the culture of the company in such scale that it is recognized by their Customers.

Robert’s favorite topics are the future of organizations and the future of sales. He is a great promoter of SMarketing as the only way how current sales and marketing organizations can be successful in the future in serving their customers’ needs. He is a dedicated researcher of corporate and individual resilience as he believes this is the true secret to successful digital transformation and to a happy and successful life in such a fast paced world, where we live today.

About Robert
Anjuan Simmons

Lending privilege

Privilege is access to societal and economic benefits based on a characteristic you possess. The most well understood forms of privilege are the ones most people don't choose for themselves like parental, racial, gendered, and physical privilege. However, there are also selected privileges like religion, gender identity, and education.

This session will teach you how to lend your privilege. You’ll learn three types of privilege lending including credibility lending (where you attach your name to a project being undertaken by someone without privilege), access lending (where you provide access to a position, location or event), and expertise lending (where you give the opportunity to be recognized as an expert). These different types of privilege lending will be illustrated through well known examples and concrete examples of how they can play out in the technology industry.

About Anjuan
Bill Jensen

The Future of Work Begins with Us

We in the STRETCH community are part of the disruptive Fourth Industrial Revolution — creating amazing new ways of working never before possible!

That means we are the in-the-trenches translators between people and digital transformation. When we lead transformation projects, we help our companies and entire supply chains create the future of work.

With that power, comes great responsibilities. More than ever before, we need to understand how our projects impact others, how we are empowering the world, and even the unintended consequences of our work. Many of our users are challenged to keep up. We are leaders for all, not just power users and early adopters.

In this highly engaging session, Bill will detail how today’s disruptive heroes — you! — can create a future that amazing for all of us! He will focus on how new emerging technologies impact people, their behaviors, and their needs. Super-empowering technologies require far more empowerment from leaders and, for some, far more help in going through personal change and transformation.

This session is about leading people through change and transformation while doing digital transformation projects.

About Bill
Jennifer Wadella

The 10 Commandments of Community Organizing

Welcome to the advanced class on community organizing. You’ve got a decent amount of members in your group, you hold events fairly routinely, maybe you’ve pulled in some legit speakers at your last conference or event … and you want to do more. This talk will focus on community organizing for growth and longevity by building out teams, improving communications, implementing processes, and most importantly will discuss how to maintain sanity in your work-life-volunteer balance. If you’ve ever had to answer the question “Oh, this ISN’T your full time job???” - this talk is definitely for you. If you’re just starting out organizing and don’t want to fall flat on your face, this talk will be very pragmatic for you.

About Jennifer
Tomasz Dubikowski
Ocado Technology

7 Deadlier Sins of Leadership

In each part of the presentation we discuss one of the deadly sins. For each sin, I will present a behaviour that we can observe in leaders' work related with this sin and a cognitive bias that makes us, as human, to behave that way. Please find details of each part of the presentation.

  1. Pride – we tend to think we know more than we actually do. This is caused by the illusion of knowledge. The learning is that some of our decisions may be based on opinions rather than facts.
  2. Greed – we tend to pick the most interesting work and lose sight of our team. This may not work due to cheerleader effect. The learning is we may achieve less than we could when we work alone.
  3. Lust – we want everything, forgetting to ask ourselves why we actually need it. In psychology it’s called Cargo Cult. The learning is that we may introduce new tool or processes etc. just because other organizations do or because we’ve heard about them on a conference.
  4. Envy – we prefer our own solutions - the ones we proposed. In the discussion we are affected by confirmation bias and look for arguments (and give them a greater value) that agree with our opinions. The learning here is that we may choose worse solution only because we are the author.
  5. Gluttony – we tend to propose more and more new things. When it’s not enough we create our own, unique solutions. Sometime it’s hard to get rid of them because of Ikea effect, which states that we put a greater value into things we created ourselves. The learning is that we may use worse solutions only because they are ours.
  6. Anger – we get angry in work, but we really look at the big picture due to deflection to the result effect. As humans we tend to evaluate things only basing on the effect, omitting entire context. The learning is that we may make decisions not based on full information.
  7. Sloth – we are lazy and we choose the same ways all over again. This happens due to well-travelled road effect. The learning is that we may achieve no results using the same way again an again.
At the end of the presentation, I show that these wrong behaviours can be changed to good ones (providing examples). This set of good behaviours can be a very good foundation to build an organisation culture supporting agility, autonomy and employee satisfaction.

About Tomasz
Richard Lewington
Plain Concepts

Augmenting the reality of education for the 21st century

In fewer than 50 years we have seen massive changes in the classroom.

From chalkboards to videotapes, the introduction of computers to interactive whiteboards, and now the implementation of Augmented Reality and Artificial Intelligence.

But how much learning value can AR & AI actually offer students beyond the “WOW factor”?

Are we just rehashing old teaching methodologies and redressing them up with the latest technology? Or should we be exploiting AR & AI’s potential as a tool rather than just another medium?

Additionally, by integrating 21st-century skills and gamification into our design thinking, we can push the potential of educational applications to the limits!

Richard Lewington explores these topics and discusses what we should be doing about them.

About Richard
Szabolcs Bíró & Péter Orbán Szabolcs Bíró & Péter Orbán
Szabolcs Bíró & Péter Orbán
EPAM & Ericsson

Data-driven leadership

We live in a world deluged with data and inundated with information, yet when we need to make leadership decisions about people in our organizations, we still feel we don’t have enough substance to rely on. How can this be?

When it comes to taking over a new team or appointing new leaders, just what data can you rely on? What sort of information flows through your team? How do your internal relationships function? Wouldn’t it be great if you could visualize these relationships? Think of what you could learn from such maps.

Using sociometric explorations, we will guide you through the theory of mapping, providing a practical guide and descriptive examples from 25- and 85-person organizations.

About Szabolcs & Péter
Ashira Prossack

Managing A Multi-Generational Workforce

There are now four generations of employees working alongside each other as Generation Z makes their entrance into the workforce this year. Combined with Millennials, these two generations will make up 75% of the workforce by 2025. It’s important that we learn not only how to manage this new generation, but how to manage the dynamics of a multi-generational workforce as well.

This session will take a closer look at managing Millennials and Gen Z and successfully integrating them into the workplace. You’ll learn how to tap into the full potential of Millennial and Gen Z talent, maximize the benefits of a multi-generational workforce, and overcome generational conflicts. We’ll explore strategies to increase employee engagement and retention, boost productivity, and build strong teams. We’ll also break down some of the most common generational myths and their impact in the workplace.

You’ll leave with a new outlook on generational differences and solutions you can implement immediately.

About Ashira
Stacey Jenkins
Crux Conception

Understanding and Improving Team Dynamics: Using FBI Negotiation & Active listening skills

Stacey has more than two decades of teaching and instructing. His areas of experience include incorporating psychology in addition to hostage negotiation methods, to achieve higher levels of leadership, team and group effectiveness. this concept has proven sound and efficient in regards to producing advanced degrees of success in the areas of administration performance and consumer awareness.

Stacey's approach derives from his experience as an adjunct professor (psychology & group dynamics) and experience as an interrogator/profiler and hostage negotiator. His proficiency with said skills has allowed him to assemble a method, which will integrate your HR, business, sales, and corporate sectors. Stacey’s research and practice will assist companies, organizations, and groups by merging psychology in consort with Active Listening Skills (ALS), which will result in an accelerated-advance technique, devised to build rapport as well as enhanced recruiting methods.

About Stacey



Budapest is closer than you think

only a short flight away

Conference venue

Uránia Film Theather See it on a map

Uránia Film Theather is located in the centre of Budapest. It was built in the 1880s as a music and dance hall. The building is a combination of Eastern Moorish and Venetian Gothic styles. It was first used as a movie theatre in 1899, when the Uránia Scientific Society hosted a presentation here, illustrated with moving pictures. The name Uránia has been used ever since.

Uránia is not only a beautiful building but an important landmark too - this is where the first independent Hungarian feature film was shot in 1901, and where the first film screening was held after World War II. Today, Uránia is a showcase for Hungarian film, hosting several film festivals and cultural events.

Need an accommodation?



Stretch is a non-profit conference. We are looking for sponsors who want to help us make this conference happen.
Take a look at last year's sponsor packages and contact us at


Contact us if you have a question at

Stretch Conference is organized by

Kinga Fekete
Kinga Fekete
Program committee
Gergely Hodicska
Gergely Hodicska
Program committee
IBM Budapest Lab
Gizella Érsek
Gizella Érsek
Program committee
Bálint Farkas
Bálint Farkas
Program committee
László Csereklei
László Csereklei
Program committee
IBM Budapest Lab
Bálint Köves
Bálint Köves
Program committee, SPoC
Medea Baccifava
Medea Baccifava
Event organizer
Attila Balogi
Attila Balogi
Event organizer
Dorina Szabadi
Dorina Szabadi
Event organizer
Tádé Arató
Tádé Arató
Event organizer

Code of Conduct

TL;DR: Be excellent with each other

All attendees, speakers, sponsors and volunteers at our conference are required to agree with the following code of conduct. Organizers will enforce this code throughout the event. We are expecting cooperation from all participants to help ensuring a safe environment for everybody.

The Quick Version

Our conference is dedicated to providing a harassment-free conference experience for everyone, regardless of gender, age, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, religion (or lack thereof), color, national origin or genetic information. We do not tolerate harassment of conference participants in any form. Sexual language and imagery is not appropriate for any conference venue, including talks, workshops, parties, Twitter and other online media. Conference participants violating these rules may be sanctioned or expelled from the conference without a refund at the discretion of the conference organizers.

The Less Quick Version

Harassment includes offensive verbal comments related to gender, age, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, religion, color, national origin, genetic information, sexual images in public spaces, deliberate intimidation, stalking, following, harassing photography or recording, sustained disruption of talks or other events, inappropriate physical contact, and unwelcome sexual attention.

Participants asked to stop any harassing behavior are expected to comply immediately.

Sponsors are also subject to the anti-harassment policy. In particular, sponsors should not use sexualised images, activities, or other material. Booth staff (including volunteers) should not use sexualised clothing/uniforms/costumes, or otherwise create a sexualised environment.

If a participant engages in harassing behavior, the conference organizers may take any action they deem appropriate, including warning the offender or expulsion from the conference with no refund.

If you are being harassed, notice that someone else is being harassed, or have any other concerns, please contact a member of conference staff immediately. Conference staff can be identified as they'll be wearing branded t-shirts.

Conference staff will be happy to help participants contact hotel/venue security or local law enforcement, provide escorts, or otherwise assist those experiencing harassment to feel safe for the duration of the conference. We value your attendance.

We expect participants to follow these rules at conference and workshop venues and conference-related social events.