Curiosity & a Higher Calling: Tales from the Garage at HP
When a brand host brings its A game to a Brand Innovators summit, magic happens. Our friends from HP Inc. did just that last week, not only welcoming a BI marketing summit to their Palo Alto headquarters but also offering up as speakers a consistent stream of deep thinkers and forward-leaning marketers.
HP diversity champions Nan Weitzman and Mike Jordan
As we mentioned in our HP history lesson last week, this is a brand with a rich history and a remarkable record of staying relevant throughout its 81 years. After our Palo Alto indoctrination, we’re inclined to think it may be the quality of the people that helps HP maintain that elite status.
Event Chair Vanessa Yanez–HP’s Worldwide Head of Print Communications–kicked off the day. What followed was a blur of thoughtful marketing leaders from multiple Bay Area brands expanding on topics like D&I, social media governance, brand love, emerging media and the future of digital marketing.
Tales from The Garage
The centerpiece of our morning program was a fireside chat with Deepak Masand, Global Head of Marketing (CMO) for HP Imaging, Printing & Solutions. Masand began by talking about innovation but quickly pivoted, making the argument that everything at a company should be driven by a higher calling, a sense of purpose. “If it doesn’t contribute to society,” Masand said, “it doesn’t leave the garage.” (HP was founded in the 1930s in a Palo Alto garage.)
The mission for HP is clear, he said: to create technology that makes lives better for everyone everywhere. “For me, purpose comes down to two things: why you do what you do and what’s the end game you’re trying to achieve.” Masand also pointed out this higher calling dovetails well with appealing to the younger generation of consumers. “Build technology for a purpose,” he said. “Not just for a profit.”
Two HP leaders–Mike Jordan (Global Head of Talent and Learning) and Nan Weitzman (Global Head of Talent)–delivered their own forceful keynote, urging brands to treat diversity and inclusion not as an afterthought but a driving force. “Imagine the future,” Weitzman noted, “inspire the team and make it happen.” Going all in on D&I inevitably boosts brands over time, they said, motivating employees and serving as a magnet for consumers.
Cristina Bondolowski, Global Head of Marketing for HP Personal Systems, offered fascinating insights on how the brand fuels curiosity in people. “We’re trying to connect with our audience and, at the same time, send them a message on the tools they’re using to become creators.” She added, “We all have the power to be creators in today’s world.”
We had plenty of good takeaways from our non-HP speakers too. We leave you with more images and wisdom from the program in Palo Alto.
To learn more about this and other Brand Innovators events, go here.