On April 25, this group of senior executives and keynote speaker — Walmart SVP OTC, health and wellness Carmen Bauza — gathered for the latest Elevation Forum the day prior to the kickoff of NACDS Annual Meeting here. Bauza passionately shared with the group how to become a truly relevant partner with Walmart by bringing diversity of thought, aligning with their digital strategy, helping Walmart attract millennials and birthing game-changing ideas for the core consumer.

Bauza moderated more than a two-hour discussion filled with invaluable ideas and philosophies on creating a strategic partnership. Bauza has been leading Walmart’s OTC, health and wellness organization for the last year, as  the department transformation continues. “Health and wellness is a strategic pillar of our company, and we must connect with the consumer where the customer is. I am looking for idea people who can re-imagine health care and create healthcare destinations with lifestyle solutions. My vision is to challenge the norms of health care and experiential solutions.” Bauza added: “I encourage you all to create game-changing consumer solutions for our stores partnering with other like minded companies. And with the growth of smaller format stores, you must think about how to improve section productivity with the right items for the needs of this small-format consumer.” Friday’s forum started with a robust presentation and discussion lead by Mack on how to create resilient, winning organizations.

“[When] creating cultures that thrive, balancing flexibility and discipline is a formula for success. These cultures are some of the best in creating breakthrough ideas, retaining talent while driving results. It also encourages resiliency, which is essential for competitive advantage. In fact, there is quite a bit of new research that supports the idea that personal resilience is more important than talent,” Mack said. “If that is true, we must think differently about how we recruit and lead our organizations.”

The next Elevation Forum will be held June 17 in Minneapolis with keynote speaker Doug Stukenborg of Target. The executive forum team will continue the vision of uncovering unique insights and discussing the best practices engaging the industry.