Tap the Hidden Power In Organizations

  • 10 Feb 2012
  • 7:30 AM - 10:00 AM
  • University of St. Thomas, 1000 LaSalle Ave., Terrence Murphy Hall 252


Registration is closed

About the Program

Organizations traditionally rely on an ORG chart to make change decisions, assess influence of individuals and/or teams, and describe how the organization is structured. However, business journals and magazines such as, Harvard Business Review, The Wall Street Journal, BusinessWeek and Fortune have all written about a more potent and useful chart for making these decisions: the informal (human) network (i.e. the hidden ORG Chart).

In this session, Vikas Narula will educate participants on the power of informal relationships and why uncovering them should be a central focus for business leaders, executives and organizational development experts.  Key issues covered include:

  • Revealing critical influencers to help drive change
  • Uncovering hidden talent to get the most out of an organization
  • Identifying teams that thrive, excel and outperform the status quo
  • Pin-pointing silos and overcoming them to boost collaboration


Vikas Narula

Michael Stewart

About the Presenters

Vikas Narula

Vikas Narula is Creator and Co-Founder of Keyhubs (www.keyhubs.com), a Minneapolis-based management software and consulting firm. Vikas specializes in helping organizations realize their potential by uncovering the hidden organization. (i.e. the informal network of relationships that exist between employees).

Vikas earned his MBA from Duke University and has a B.S. in computer science. He has spent over 15 years in the software product development industry working for two successful medical software / services startups – Vital Images (1994-2005) and Virtual Radiologic (2005-2009).

He first learned about informal networks during his MBA in 2006. Surprised (and frustrated) by the lack of business-oriented tools and services, he decided to build his own. Since its founding in 2008, Keyhubs has helped uncover the hidden organization for a diverse cross-section of companies, including Accenture, Barclays Capital and Boston Scientific.

Vikas lives with his wife and two boys (8 and 5) in southwest Minneapolis. In his free time, he enjoys walking around the lakes in the summer and playing ice-hockey in the winter. 

Michael Stewart

Michael Stewart has over 20 years of human resource consulting experience in the areas of leadership development, organizational effectiveness and performance management. As President and CEO of Work Effects, Inc., Michael is responsible for providing vision, strategy, and leadership for the Minneapolis-based consulting firm. Michael takes a hands-on approach to product development, sales, operations and marketing. He joined the company as a partner in 2002, and was named President and CEO in 2006.

Michael has an extensive expertise in strategically growing organizations. Prior to joining Work Effects, Michael was a Senior Partner for Questar Data Systems where he helped grow the organization by over 257% in three years. Michael was also Practice Leader for NCS/Pearson Organizational Assessments, where he partnered with David Campbell and Marshal Goldsmith to implement 100's of leadership and organizational development initiatives. He holds a B.S in Organizational Communications and MIS from the University of Wisconsin.

Teresa Biss

Teresa Biss is the current Director of Training and Organization Development for Bremer Bank headquartered in downtown St. Paul, MN. In her current role she maintains responsibility for the facilitation of key employee development initiatives that impact organizational performance and effectiveness. Teresa has lead the design and introduction of Bremer’s Leadership Academy for emerging leaders as well as its Leadership Cornerstones program for frontline managers. Additionally, she remains involved in executive leadership development for the organization. Teresa has designed, led, and facilitated talent assessment/succession planning initiatives, along with corporate strategic planning processes and organizational change initiatives. She’s worked with sales leaders in the design and introduction of sales management and coaching processes, continuing to be a trusted strategic resource to sales and service leaders. In her early career with Bremer, Teresa was involved with creating diversity and inclusion initiatives, directing the organization’s recruiting, staffing, employment law, and employee relations efforts and functioned as a Human Resources generalist.

A favorite aspect of Teresa’s job is the ongoing opportunity to work with teams of Bremer executives, mid-level managers, and employees while facilitating processes that enhance individual and team cohesiveness and productivity. The collective body of talent, individual engagement, and leadership initiative demonstrated by employees throughout Bremer’s Minnesota, North Dakota, and Wisconsin locations powerfully contributes to Bremer’s success as a regional financial services provider. Prior to joining Bremer, Teresa worked in the public education, non-profit, and private sectors.

More Info

Narula will provide attendees with insights and examples of how inter-personal workplace dynamics often goes unnoticed, yet serves as a potent driving force in business outcomes. Case studies and examples will be reviewed to highlight impact on the bottom-line. Co-presenting with Narula are Teresa Biss, Director of OD at Bremer Bank and Michael Stewart, CEO of HR Consulting firm Work Effects - Keyhubs customer and collaborative partner respectively.

Value to participants: attendees will leave with a new and unique technique for optimizing organizational performance. They will understand the theory, practice and benefits of mapping informal networks (i.e. social capital) within their company. They will be able to immediately implement what they learn and better position themselves to make informed decisions regarding organizational change/development, talent retention and cross-departmental collaboration.

Three key points attendees will learn:

  • What are informal networks and why should you care.
  • How to uncover and leverage them to drive business results.
  • Examples of how leading businesses are using informal networks to achieve better outcomes. 
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