I have enjoyed the honor of participating in the Annual Meeting for several years now. The pace in Davos borders on frantic, but with some planning and hard work, I can learn more and do more during those few days than at any other event. This year’s gathering was no different. It was three days full of sessions, meetings, and interviews.
In my view, however, there was one welcome difference. The past two Annual Meetings were understandably subdued, but this year I saw signs of what I call “cautious optimism” – a sense that while there are still economic uncertainties, there are also are reasons to be hopeful about 2011 and beyond. Many of the leaders I spoke with are seeing momentum in their markets and positioning their organizations for growth. At Deloitte, we are returning to our pre-crisis hiring levels and working to expand our capabilities.
Other notable moments included my first 2011 event – a panel discussion on leveraging human potential in the new reality. I am passionate about finding ways to unleash the power of large groups so that they work together toward a shared purpose. I also was delighted to moderate a panel on manufacturing and join other Big Four leaders for a discussion on accounting for new realities.
Russian Federation President Dmitry Medvedev’s opening address was a memorable, at times even moving, session. In spite of the Domodedovo airport tragedy, he delivered his message about Russia’s work to strengthen its investment climate, public institutions, and quality of life effectively and with great composure.
Davos is truly one of the highlights of my year. It is an extraordinary opportunity to interact with some of the world’s brightest minds and deepen my understanding of the issues that impact our world, my organization, and the clients we serve.