ServiceNow Global CEO Summit: Event Attracts A-Listers to Create Positive Change

OVERVIEW

Based in Santa Clara, California, and with locations across 30 countries, ServiceNow delivers modern digital workflows to make the world of work, work better. Their cloud‑based platform and solutions help digitize and unify organizations so they can find smarter, faster, better ways to make work flow.

When Bill McDermott became CEO of ServiceNow in 2019, he brought with him a high-profile event he had founded while previously CEO of SAP. For nearly 10 years, the Global CEO Summit has attracted high-profile attendees including B2B and B2C CEOs of Fortune 50 companies, startup CEOs, and socially conscious A-listers from the music and movie industries.

All share a common goal: create positive and lasting change in the world.

CHALLENGE

Produce Event for CEOs of 100 Global Brands in the ‘Magnitude of the Moment’

Delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic, the first Global CEO Summit since McDermott joined ServiceNow would occur in New York in spring 2022. This would be a pivotal moment for attendees to connect as global leaders and evolve the impact of their roles.

Lynn Harper-Hausner, founder of Summer Street Company leadership brand and event consultancy, would continue at the event planning helm as she had for previous summits. Lynn already had production resources lined up for the onsite needs of the one-and-a-half-day event.

What she needed was a trusted partner to take on the critical aspects of event planning including speaker sourcing and management, agenda building, registration, and design.

Above all, she wanted a creative and credible sounding board to help develop of-the-moment topics and messaging focused on how global CEOs can drive change. A who’s who of global brands would attend – from Chevron, Gucci, and IBM to Ogilvy, Sony, and Verizon. A hundred CEOs and guests would gather to focus on the theme, “The Magnitude of this Moment,” and reimagine their potential together.

SOLUTION

Deliver Expertise in Wide Scope of Event Planning and Production

Lightspeed partnered with Summer Street Company to deliver an unforgettable Global CEO Summit for ServiceNow.

Among the comprehensive aspects of event planning and production Lightspeed can deliver, ServiceNow turned to us for the following:

Speaker Sourcing / Management and Agenda Building

Capturing the imagination and attention of global, top-tier CEOs leaves no room for guessing or winging it.

Over the course of many months, we brainstormed and recommended (for and against) topic ideas, sourced and researched potential speakers, and drafted and re-drafted the agenda. We also developed messaging, wrote talking points, prepared pre-event briefing documents, and ran content reviews.

While other communications teams and vendors were also involved to assist the impressive line-up of speakers, Lightspeed developed talking points, wrote talk tracks, and provided speaker prep documents for two key areas of the agenda:

  • Changing The Game sports panel with Robert Kraft, Founder, Chairman, and CEO of The Kraft Group and CEO of the New England Patriots; Cynthia “Cynt” Marshall, CEO of the Dallas Mavericks, and NBA Commissioner Adam Silver. Theme: Playbook to Win When the Rules of Business Evolve.
  • Fireside Chat with Lawyer and Human Rights Advocate Amal Clooney and Actor / Filmmaker / Humanitarian George Clooney. Topics and questions covered social justice and exponential technology growth while diving deeper into the summit theme.

Consistency is key for a quality event, so Lightspeed provided speaker prep templates for other planning teams to use for their sessions. We also devised a process for ServiceNow to update the pre-event briefing document as the attendee list evolved.

Registration and Web Development

Lightspeed built a fully custom event website designed for web and mobile use, including a participants page of virtual networking cards for attendees and speakers.

Like ServiceNow, we love to make work flow easier. So we:

  • Provided a simple process for the hundred CEOs’ administrative assistants to provide headshots along with correctly spelled names and titles for the participants page
  • Made continuous updates to the site as the speaker and attendee lists evolved before and during the event
  • Introduced automated registration processes so the CEO communications vendor no longer had to manually input data
  • Produced a registration website with full, online registration capabilities to easily capture contact and guest information, housing specifics, dietary needs, and other special requirements.

Brand / Identity Package

The summit’s previous look-and-feel was closely tied to the SAP brand. This event needed a complete brand revamp to reflect ServiceNow as the new host company.

Lightspeed provided several new logo options using the ServiceNow brand colors. With the winning logo selected, we designed the event and registration website to complement the look of the event logo.

Fast forward to one month before the event, and ServiceNow rolled out a new brand identity and color palette. Color us adaptable! Once the client approved the cost of re-doing the summit’s brand elements with the new colors, we made it happen in a short time span.

RESULTS

Prepare to Deliver Another First-Class Global Event

Two Global CEO Summits are scheduled to take place each year, the second to be held in Europe in the fall. Lightspeed is ready to jump in and help produce another stellar event.

“We have more ideas on processes that would make things easier for them and us,” says Bryan Meyer, Event Operations Lead at Lightspeed.

Lightspeed is the partner you want to work with again and again. I could quickly hand-off items to them and know they didn’t need a lot of context or explanation, because the Lightspeed team lives and breathes event management. They already get it. I could go to them for a sanity check while relying on them to get things done seamlessly in the background, provide quick turnarounds, and deliver quality. Partnering together produced amazing results.”

– Lynn Harper-Hausner, Founder of Summer Street Company and Event Consultant to ServiceNow CEO