Agenda - March 7, 2018

8:00 AM - 9:00 AM - Breakfast & Registration

8:15 AM - 9:00 AM - Breakfast Briefing: What Gets Measured Gets Done

Lynn Branigan, President, She Runs It
Carol Watson, Senior Director, Global Advisory & Consulting Services, Diversity Best Practices

We can all agree that inclusion is a hard-fought battle in our industry and it’s hard to gauge how your business is doing. She Runs It™ and Diversity Best Practices (DBP) created an Inclusion and Diversity Accountability Consortium (IDAC) for the marketing and media industry based on the principle that “what gets measured gets done.” Consortium participants must commit to three key actions: They must take part in an annual benchmarking study called the DBP Inclusion Index, which seeks to identify areas of opportunity for diversity and inclusion efforts within companies; they must have executive presence at quarterly roundtable discussions designed to share best practices; and they must implement or maintain initiatives specific to each company in fostering diverse talent and building inclusive cultures.

9:00 AM - 9:05 AM - Welcome Back & Recap
Keesha Jean-Baptiste, Senior Vice President - Talent Engagement + Inclusion, 4A's

9:05 AM - 9:50 AM - From Purpose to Fullfillment     

Arthur Woods will share highlights from Imperative's latest breakthrough study on purpose replacing employee engagement specifically honing in on new insights around:

  1. Determining which stage of development your organization is in to pinpoint what is next
  2. The new roles, responsibilities and structures that are emerging with the application of purpose
  3. Best practices for getting senior leaders on board and make the case of "return on investment"
  4. Specific case studies of organizations applying the Purpose Framework to shift their talent strategies to attract and retain the best talent" need description and list of speakers

Arthur Woods, Co-Founder, Imperative   

9:50 AM - 10:30 AM - Creating More Balanced Leadership Benches

As the saying goes "you have to see it to be it." If that's the case, we will continue to have few female CEOs and rare examples of women of color in the top role. We need deliberate succession planning so the current and next generation of agency leadership, specifically President and CEO roles, will be more equitable. A recent study by Korn Ferry published by Harvard Business Review noted the specific traits of courage, risk-taking, resilience and managing ambiguity are critical to a women's success.

This panel features female CEOs sharing insights on their experiences, what impacted them most during their careers and what it takes to keep them flourishing in the role.

Karen Costello, Chief Creative Officer, The Martin Agency
Marla Kaplowitz, President & CEO, 4A's
Denise Wong
, President, Midnight Oil

Moderator: Nadja Bellan-White
, EVP Global Brand Management, Europe, Middle East & Africa, Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide

10:30 AM - 11:15 AM - Changing the Feedback Experience

A hot topic across organizations and among HR Business Partners is changing the way organizations provide feedback. Articles pose, “Is the Annual Performance Review Dead?” and point out that GE, Accenture, Microsoft, Adobe, Gap, Medtronic, and some 10% of Fortune 500 companies have eliminated performance reviews or ranking systems altogether. Unfortunately, the way feedback is delivered in most companies is broken, whether it comes through a performance review or a 360 feedback system. Intentions are compromised, context is lacking, and all too often it’s focused on what’s not working vs identifying what the employee could be doing to excel. Additionally, feedback systems lack ongoing support from stakeholders - the “people system” - to help the employee successfully grow and change. In this session we will share concepts to address these shortfalls and shift participants’ mindset so that feedback becomes far more constructive and enjoyable for both those giving and receiving. We’ll discuss positive psychology and key concepts such as strength-based coaching, solution focused inquiry, and defining desired outcomes, along with a close look at human systems and importance of social support. Participants will leave with more energy and ideas for transforming feedback in their lives and organizations.

Jen Ostrich, Co-founder, Shift Positive 360
Pete Berridge, Co-founder, Shift Positive 360

11:15 AM - 11:30 AM - Break

11:30 AM - 12:20 PM - Talent Workshops
You can choose to attend 1 of the 3 workshops we are offering. Each workshop is happening concurrently.

Talent Management/Development Track:
Making Performance Management as Nimble as Your Business
Jill Cusick, Director, Talent & Organizational Development, NBCUniversal

Move over process, make room for conversation. While organizations of all sizes and industries have been evolving to continuous performance management, relatively little has been uncovered about how to truly “make it work.” The Operations & Technology business unit at NBCU (approx. 3,000 FTE’s) believes they’ve cracked it. Jill Cusick, Director of Talent & Org Development will walk you thru how her client group utilized Design Thinking to forego an annual review and ratings process and instead encourage employees to set up “Time to Talk” when it makes sense for them. Immediate results include higher engagement scores, upwards of 75-90% of employees self-reporting having more development conversations, and even cost savings to the business. And with no fancy systems or budget (you read that right…zero, zilch, nada) just good ‘ole fashioned grit and excel, they’ve since doubled-down on Talent Management to ensure employees are fairly rewarded, promoted and developed.

Difference & Belonging Track:
Capitalizing on Your Unique Culture

Gregory Reynolds, Co-Founder and CEO, g-dii

Every team has a unique culture—a way of seeing the world, a way of interacting with others—that determines whether they’ll meet their business goals or fall short of them. But while leaders recognize that culture impacts performance, they haven’t been able to tease out which aspects of a team’s culture are driving results and which represent a potential liability. That’s about to change: in this interactive session, g-dii CEO Greg Reynolds unveils a suite of tools that equip leaders to deconstruct culture into dimensions they can measure, compare, and harness. Using provocative images from g-dii’s Human Insight Evaluation, Reynolds takes a measure of the room’s collective perspective to demonstrate how a diverse group can nonetheless share a common lens. Using data from g-dii’s clients, he shows how measures of openness, empathy, and psychological safety produce an empirical portrait of team culture that lays bare the drivers of team performance—a solution that the 4A’s will be making available to members through its Enlightened Workplace Certification program.

Attendees will come away with eyes newly open to the power and possibility of culture metrics to help them capitalize on difference.

Talent Acquisition/Staffing Track:
Elevated: Chicago's Community Approach to Agency Recruitment
Kerry Griffin, Chief Talent Officer, MERGE
Bianca Rubin, Project Manager and Brand Ambassador, Elevated
Max Wagner, Project Manager and Brand Ambassador, Elevated

Imagine if leaders shed their agency affiliations to work together in a bold approach to attracting talent. That's exactly what's happening in Chicago. Elevated Chicago is cutting across multiple agency boundaries and bringing the best and brightest to the industry, to the city, and to our agencies. Learn how this market is leaning into their region’s key strength--working together--to build talent bridges.

Come hear about how dozens of agencies are paving a new trail within the vibrant Chicago community. You'll gain insights into a different way to tackle recruiting in your market. The biggest winners are the talented young professionals, our future leaders, who yearn for their calling as well as a place to call home. Not to mention, the promise of career growth. Come hear about the vision, the process, and the results.

12:20 PM - 1:35 PM - Networking Lunch

Lunch & Learn Session: Candidates are in control. Now what?
Matt Singer
, VP of Marketing, Jobvite

Much like marketers, recruiting professionals are increasingly challenged to find ways to engage with candidates in the digital age. Join us for a compelling lunch-and-learn focused on the next generation of talent acquisition – Continuous Candidate Engagement (CCE). Hear best practices from long time HR/recruiting technologist and VP of Marketing, Matt Singer. The key takeaways for our discussion will be:

- Benchmark yourself against thousands of recruiters worldwide to understand where your hiring funnel is working and where you need to improve
- Practical techniques to attract, engage and hire top talent through candidate engagement and recruitment marketing
- Ways to make your employer brand a competitive differentiator

Don’t miss this opportunity to network with other TA leaders and stay current on the emerging next phase in the evolution of recruiting. And if that wasn’t enough, we’re giving way a couple of Amazon Echos.

Lunch & Learn Session:  Solve Your 2018 Skill Gaps - Building Your Agency Revenues with a Data Driven Talent Plan
Nick New
, Managing Director, North America, AVADO
Niall McKinney
, Managing Director, International, AVADO

Making sure your agency has the talent and skills to succeed has never been more demanding. In this session we will help you build a plan addressing the key skill areas your agency needs to address in 2018.

Using data captured during the event, we will help you prioritize your investments and focus to ensure your teams are able to meet this years critical needs from clients: data; customer centricity and new ways of working.

By taking our survey online at, you’ll come armed to the session with data that we’ll help you turn into first insights, and then an action plan you can take back to the office.

AVADO has over 10 years experience of building talent plans and delivering agency transformation around the world. Our proprietary Digital Skills Index and unique ROI focused approach has helped agency leadership teams develop clear, simple and deliverable plans that center around driving agency revenues and key KPIs such as retention, profitability and new business.

1:35 PM - 2:20 PM - Can I Be Honest With You?   

As they say, “culture eats strategy for lunch” – but how do you build an organization that is successful for both the business and the people? It starts with asking the hard questions and really listening to the answers.

Judy Jackson, Wunderman’s Global Head of Talent and Seth Solomons, CEO, North America will share how they’re building an open culture that supports honest and transparent conversations between employees and managers. Although they’ve only just begun, initial results – increased revenue, reduced attrition and better work – show that they are on the right track. In this session, learn how Judy and Seth are leading by example to spearhead a movement.

Judy Jackson, Global Chief Talent Officer, Wunderman
Seth Solomons, CEO, North America, Wunderman

2:20 PM - 3:10 PM - Talent Workshops
You can choose to attend 1 of the 3 workshops we are offering. Each workshop is happening concurrently.

Talent Management/Development Track:
Anomaly | Spreading And Strengthening Our DNA
Allie Sabol, Global Talent Director, Anomaly
Franke Rodriguez, Partner, CEO New York and Toronto, Anomaly

How can a company actually get better as they get bigger? How can you avoid the gravitational pull that dilutes your founding principles? How do you spread and strengthen the company DNA? In this session we'll share the story of our first year piloting a progressive talent development platform designed to do just that.

Difference & Belonging Track:
Modern Parents in Advertising: Why We Need Them, How to Keep Them

Jennifer Frieman, Chief Talent Officer, Momentum Worldwide
Katy Hornaday, EVP ECD, Barkley
Chris Cardetti, VP Group Strategy Director, Barkley
Kerry Griffin, Chief Talent Officer, MERGE

Our industry is challenging to juggle alongside parenthood, but it's not impossible. While work-life questions are frequently posed to female executives, the modern dad wants just as much to be there for tee ball practice and not miss out on birthdays. The panel will discuss why the modern parent is so valuable to our agencies—from their quick-decision making to their problem-solving skills— plus how agencies, clients and talent can support their success through simple, inventive ideas and policies.

Talent Acquisition/Staffing Track:
New Agency Skills and Roles In Age Of Digital Transformation

Allison Kent-Smith, Founder & CEO, smith and beta
Chick Foxgrover, EVP, Creative Technology and Innovation, 4A's

Agile methodologies, big data, marketing automation, prototyping utility, designing chatbots, innovation consulting, and so much more are now part of daily practice at agencies and brands.  The digital transformation of life and commerce is remaking the world of marketing, and clients are reconfiguring their teams’ capabilities to keep up. Agencies need to stay smart, map and evolve their capabilities to these changes in order to be the go-to partner for the challenges and opportunities ahead. Agencies are quickly developing and embracing new professional disciplines and traditional roles are evolving into digital-infused hybrids.

Chick and Allison will lead a conversation to discuss the new and evolving essential skills for agency employees in the post-digital world and how agencies will create careers and capabilities of the future. We'll focus our discussion on more action, less talk.

3:10 PM - 3:25 PM - Break

3:25 PM - 4:10 PM - What's the Story Behind Your Workforce Data?
A Look Into How Data Can Tell You the Past, Present, and Future of Your Workforce

We have quickly transformed ourselves to better leverage data to serve our clients, but how are we using data to become smarter about our workforce? What are the most meaningful and actionable metrics to track? How does HR technology impact your strategy? How do you get buy-in to take on this project? How do you set goals and expectations?

Attend this panel to learn how HR leaders at advertising agencies created a plan to better leverage HR data, where they are now regarding this process, the lessons they've learned during their journey, and how they continue to work to reach the next level.

Rawan Ghanem, VP of HR Operations and Analytics, Horizon Media
Melissa Morahan
, Talent Director, 72andSunny
Moderator: Bruce Marable, Co-Founder / CEO, Employee Cycle

4:10 PM - 4:50 PM - The New Workplace and the Will to Change

Jennifer Brown, CEO and Founder, Jennifer Brown Consulting

To give their fullest contribution, employees must feel they can bring their full selves to work; however research shows many do not feel comfortable doing so. They are spending valuable energy every day minimizing or managing aspects of their own diversity – of identity, background, experience – in order to succeed. This takes a particular toll on diverse talent – women, people of color, LGBT individuals, people with disabilities – at a time when organizations are struggling to recruit, retain, and develop those same individuals. But all of us, and the business, pay the price.

In today’s shifting landscape, we need to think more broadly about the very definitions of diversity which will resonate with current and future talent. How we can build more inclusive workplace environments where all kinds of talent feel welcome?

4:50 PM - 5:00 PM - Closing Out Remarks/Thank You to Partners   

5:00 PM - 7:00 PM - Cocktail Reception/Networking

Presented by


*Program subject to change.*