January 2019

Intrapreneurship at the very heart of the 13th edition of the DELFINGEN Leadership Meeting

The 13th edition of the DELFINGEN Leadership Meeting was held on December 4 – 7, and brought together over 80 Group executives from Europe / Africa, Asia and the Americas.

Why a Leadership Meeting?

DELFINGEN organizes its Leadership Meeting every year. It is an event that brings together the main Group executives for several days of conferences, workshops and team building. Various topics were discussed, and activities were organized, so that everyone could grow individually and collectively. Attendees could therefore get out of their day-to-day business and take a step back to imagine the future of DELFINGEN from a different and innovative angle.

Intrapreneurship at DELFINGEN

This year the intrapreneurship theme had been chosen, as part of the framework of actions that had already been undertaken by the Group. DELFINGEN had indeed started its intrapreneurship program, called “The Annex,” in June 2018. This is a real project accelerator for colleagues, as it means launching ideation challenges to create emulation around this approach, an Open Lab to model and test new products or concepts, as well as an intrapreneur support program to ensure the successful outcome of projects.

The Annex is a place and a digital platform to think “outside the box” about specific themes sponsored by the Group’s Management team. This program is currently underway in France and will be deployed on other sites abroad this year.

A round table was organized on the first day to raise awareness amongst the attendees about the notion of intrapreneurship with internal and external speakers, such as

  • Vinesh Punjabi (Business Development Manager for DELFINGEN in India), about his experience with intrapreneurship within the company;
  • Céline de Greef (Founder of MyCrowdCompany), the platform we use as part of The Annex (THE space dedicated to intrapreneurship at DELFINGEN);
  • Dominique Ebel, Delegate Regional Director at ENEDIS, about his experience with intrapreneurship within this major French company;
  • Olivier Lamotte, Research engineer, in charge of ’Innovation Crunch Time© / Crunch Lab at UTBM, Engineering College in the French top 10, leader in innovation.

All these people have tested intrapreneurship out in their own organizations, and this round table was organized, so we could listen to their impressions and they could share their motivations, successes and precious advice about this with us.

The DELFINGEN Hackathon

After a first day based on presentations and experience-sharing, DELFINGEN wanted to organize its own hackathon in partnership with the UTBM, in the form of a Crunch Time©. The organization team, in collaboration with members from the Executive Committee thus determined 5 strategic subjects for the future of DELFINGEN, so 10 teams could work on them for 2 and a half days.


The Hackathon was held in the UTBM’s premises, so that staff would be removed from the company context and thereby be as creative as possible. Mini-conferences were organized to provide teams with assistance at various stages of their projects:

– Setting an objective / how a team works

– Stress management

– Agile methods

– Design thinking

– Lean start-ups

– Knowing how to pitch

The conferences were conducted by internal speakers, considered as experts in the domain and also by Jean-François Thiriet, coach for managers and team facilitator.

Creativity, energization and modelling activities, such as Lego Serious Play© based on the attendees’ projects were also organized by Diverty Events.


The UTBM not only hosted the event, but also provided access to all of its infrastructures so teams could prototype, such as interactive digital screens, 3D printing and laser cutting. The engineering students were also present to provide technical support to the groups.

After 2 and a half days of work, the challenge did not stop there, as teams only had 5 minutes to present their projects!

The attendees each grew in their own way at every stage of this hackathon, depending on the aspects that left a lasting impression on them. The organization was sponsored by the DELFINGEN Academy, an internal training school within the Group, the main objective of which is to pass on know-how and acquire knowledge and skills. A Crunch Time© was therefore the ideal opportunity to do this!

The teams’ multidisciplinarity and cultural diversity were key criteria for the success of this exercise and founded the richness of the projects that were presented.

This first hackathon in the form of a Crunch Time© was therefore a resounding success and DELFINGEN will no doubt repeat the experience.