Friday, April 20, 2007

ERE Expo - Day 3

Day 3 kicked off for me with an early workout, providing me much needed energy for the day. The conference continued with a presentation by Jeff Bonrey, CEO of Trovix. It's funny, at conferences like this, you often hear many conflicting messages as to what is most critical in the talent acquisition space. Some of the speakers are very strong and convincing, and sometimes, they are not. Mr. Bonrey has an interesting product, he told us to change, but didn't offer much new to think about. I also disagreed with him that recruiting is all about amassing resumes. It's about building and cultivating relationships. Arte Nathan emphasized that on Wednesday, and Michael McNeal emphasized that further with the presentation that followed.

Michael truly is one of the best in the business. I first heard Michael speak back in the late 90s when he was still with Cisco. He was funny, provocative, and incredibly innovative then. Little has changed over the years. Intuit is lucky to have him now. Michael's presentation focused on building out a strategy that focuses on the Employee Experience. Can't wait to go back to the details of his presentation, this was really good, relevant stuff for me and my firm. He said that he was instructed to get everyone motivated. Mission Accomplished!

After taking care of some business, I rejoined the conference for the afternoon sessions. The first session was with Kevin Wheeler, who asked if Social Networks were hype. Kevin's grasp of technology and it's effect on the emerging workforce is fantastic. Are Social Networks hyped? He argues that the hype is overinflated now, but many of these networks will endure and eventually become the norm of recruiting. It's all about building a Talent Community and Social Networks are the key.

Next came the Bloggers panel, a Q&A session with Jim Durbin, Joe Grimm, Heather Hamilton and Dennis Smith. I got a seat front and center to blog about the bloggers. Todd actually has a great synopsis of the session on the ERE Expo Blog, so no need to be repetitive here. Got some pictures though, which once again should be up by the weekend.

The show wrapped up with the always entertaining and insightful Dr. John Sullivan. Dr. John was controversial as usual (heard a few gasps from the recruiter next to me), but this talk was different. It was really a fantastic view into the do's and don't for building a Career Website today. Perfect timing for me as we are in the process of redesigning my firm's website right now.

And then, it was done. It went by way to fast, as most good things do. I did hook up with Jason Davis and Cheezhead for a great meal and even better discussion before calling it a night. Time to head home now. I'm tired, yet energized. Several of the sessions were excellent, made some great new connections, found some very relevant vendors at the Exhibit Hall, and as always, the networking was priceless. Kudos to ERE for another great show. And kudos to ERE for bringing the fall show to my home town, Washington DC. If I didn't see you here in San Diego this week, I hope to see you in DC in October!

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