Reenvisioning Retail

Reenvsioning Retail - Partnership of TalentFOUND


WHY: Retail, hospitality, tourism, and food and beverage service are some of the industries that were most heavily impacted by layoffs at the onset of COVID-19. As a result, the need for scalable models for upskilling and reskilling the frontline workforce is more important than ever.

WHAT: Join this interactive convening to engage in the discussion about equitable strategies for economic recovery and identify opportunities for upskilling, reskilling, and redeploying displaced workers that can be implemented to support the economic well-being of frontline workers in your community now and in the future.

WHO: The statewide convening will bring together leaders from some of Colorado's most heavily impacted industries with partners in education and workforce to identify shared solutions for economic recovery for the industry and frontline workers. Representatives from businesses in these industries, frontline workers, and public partners and funders interested in supporting businesses and frontline workers are encouraged to attend.

Agenda and Session Materials

Please view the Day 1 and Day 2 agendas below to access event materials, including session slides, notes, and recordings from all full group sessions.

Day 1: July 23

8:00 - 9:00 a.m. - Digital Espresso

Facilitator: Bobbie Wolfe, CWDC

Opportunity for digital networking with event participants.

9:00 - 11:00 a.m. - Opening and Key Note - Equity in Retail

Speaker: Dr. Nita Mosby-Tyler, The Equity Project

Session Recording: Watch the session

Session Materials: Slides and notes

Advancing equity throughout the retail and hospitality industries is a competitive advantage for businesses and can open up opportunities for frontline workers. As the Reenvisioning Retail conference opens, Dr. Nita Mosby-Tyler, the Chief Catalyst and Founder of The Equity Project, LLC. will ground attendees in an understanding of what equity is to frame discussion about an equitable recovery for businesses and frontline workers. Her witty storytelling will embrace misunderstandings and differences while encouraging self-reflection and actions we can all take towards eliminating disparities as both a competitive advantage for businesses and a moral imperative for frontline workers.  

11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. - Telling Our Story: Digital Live Scribing of Frontline Workers

Artist: Cal Brackin, Onboard Innovations
Speakers: Som Baral, Kyra Harrell, Sophie Trent, Rachel Welch

Session Recording: Watch the session

Session Materials: Slides and notes

Illustrations from Cal Brackin, Onboard Innovations: Som Baral, Kyra Harrell, Sophie Trent, Rachel Welch

The COVID-19 crisis emphasized the critical role frontline workers play in Colorado and beyond. And yet, 24 million workers in the U.S. face little to no upward career mobility, leaving them vulnerable to displacement and with few options to increase their wages and career opportunities for themselves and their families.* New solutions are needed to accelerate skill development and economic mobility for frontline workers, but effective solutions must respond to the unique needs, barriers, and interests these workers face. This session will ground discussion on economic recovery in the lived experiences and expertise of frontline workers across Colorado.  

*A Guide to Upskilling America's Frontline Workers, Aspen Institute (2015).

1:00 - 2:30 p.m. - Solution Salon #1 - Occupational Segregation and Wage Discrepancies

Speakers: Julia Sebastian, One Fair Wage; Yamila Ruiz, One Fair Wage; Mary Mino, Colorado Restaurant Association

Session Recording: Watch the session

Session Materials: Slides and notes

Occupational segregation occurs when one demographic group is overrepresented or underrepresented among different kinds of work or different types of jobs. This interactive discussion will bring together industry representatives with experts in occupational segregation and wages to discuss challenges confronting retail, food and beverage, and hospitality and engage participants in identifying Colorado-specific solutions. 

2:30 - 4:00 p.m. - Solution Salon #2 - Upskilling and Employee Investment

Speakers: Bridgett Strickler, The Graduate Network; Josh Frazier-Sparks, Walmart; Andy Magel, Mile High Workshop; Andrew Ouellette, Fire on the Mountain; Jeff Howell, Flying Horse

Session Recording: Watch the session

Session Materials: Slides and notes

For many companies, economic downturns trigger budget cuts and can lead to a departure from investments in the training and development of employees. Join this interactive solution salon to hear from state and national business leaders about their views on upskilling and employee investment, and discuss challenges and ideas for upskilling and investing in employees. 

Day 2: July 24

8:00 - 9:00 a.m. - Digital Espresso

Facilitator: Bobbie Wolfe, CWDC

Opportunity for digital networking with event participants.

9:00 - 10:30 a.m. - Opening and Key Note - Business Reinvention: The New Normal for America’s Independent Businesses. 

Welcome: Katherine Corell, DCI
Speaker: Jon Schallert, The Schallert Group

Session Recording: Watch the session

Session Materials: Slides and notes

Lessons in business reinvention from owners who embrace change.

10:30 - 11:30 a.m. - The Future of Retail

Speakers: Yustina Saleh, EMSI; Janine Williams, Impulsify; Alison Lingane, Project Equity; Jason Wiener, Main Street Phoenix 

Session Recording: Watch the session

Session Materials: Slides and notes

Even before the pandemic retail was changing. COVID-19 and subsequent stay at home orders have imposed new and increasingly complex challenges for the industry, creating a need to reenvision how the industry operates to ensure health, safety, and relevance in the age of disruption. This discussion will review projections on the future of retail and examine innovations for how the industry might reenvision itself.  

11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. - Health and Safety

Speakers: Brittany Cole, Work Life Partnership; Troy Huffman, CDPHE; Sean McDonough, Natural Grocers

Session Recording: Watch the session

Session Materials: Slides and notes

As businesses seek to reopen, safety for customers and workers is a top priority. Join this session for a discussion on the physical and mental health considerations for businesses and workers in the age of COVID-19. The panel will include a representative from the Colorado Department of Public Health and the Environment speaking on state level health and safety guidance.  

1:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. - Small Business: Survive, Pivot, Thrive

Speakers: Lindsey Vigoda, Small Business Majority (panel moderator); Guy Simsiman, Nextbite; Kendra Anderson, Bar Helix/Cabana X; Lorena Cantarovici, Maria Empanada; Jen Zeuner, Hot Tomato

Session Recording: Watch the session

Session Materials: Slides and notes

Small businesses are the heart of Colorado's economy. Coloradan's have always had an instinct to support local, and now in the face of COVID-19, communities are continuing to rally and support their local small businesses -- even when those businesses aren't physically open. Join Lindsey Vigoda from the Small Business Majority in a discussion with small business owners from around Colorado about the innovative ways they are keeping their businesses viable and how they continue to support and invest in their workers.

2:30 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. - The Good Job Advantage

Speakers: Jenny Weissbound, Aspen Institute; Sarah Kalloch, Good Jobs Institute; Jennifer Briggs, Reinventing Work Consultant/Colorado Employee Ownership Commission

Session Recording: Watch the session

Session Materials: Slides and notes

What is a good job? We're not just talking about pay, or job duties. The ways you connect with employees and customers can have a big impact on your bottom line. Join this session to learn about operational strategies businesses have taken to increase retention and productivity. These practices can be small changes that make a big impact!

3:30 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. - Closing and Call to Action

Speaker: Lee Wheeler-Berliner, CWDC

Session Recording: Watch the session (begins at 52:28)

Session Materials: Slides and notes

A recap of Reenvisioning Retail 2020 and guidance for engaging in next steps.


Thank You To Our Conference Partners

Spanish Peaks Business Alliance

Lives Empowered logo

Lives Empowered brings together retail businesses interested in working collaboratively to increase economic mobility for frontline workers across Colorado and contribute to a strong economy. Lives Empowered is made possible by a $4.1 million grant from Walmart to the Colorado Workforce Development Council.