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HRPA 2011 Conference & Tradeshow explores the HR and business trends of our time

By February 11, 2011Uncategorized

Prolific filmmaker Frank Capra once said, “Don’t follow trends, start trends.” Capra was an innovation leader in his time and today his advice holds as true as ever.

At the same time, current and emerging trends are not to be ignored if you and your business want to keep up with the competition – whether you’re competing for customers or for top talent.

This was the focus of HRPA’s 2011 Annual Conference & Trade Show, “identifying and capitalizing on the trends – demographic, economic, and technological – that are revolutionizing the workplace…”

Of course, Career Edge Organization was right there at the centre of the action! Once again, as we did last year, we came, we saw and we conferenced. While our team took turns talking to HR professionals at our booth at the trade show, we also had the opportunity to attend the conference workshops and sessions, which boasted an impressive list of world-class speakers and experts including best-selling author and Emmy-nominated media visionary Leonard Brody and Dan Pink who is also a best-selling author as well as past chief speechwriter to former US Vice President Al Gore.

The conference was guided along by an energetic Master of Ceremony, Mike Lipkin who is president of Environics/Lipkin, a leading Canadian research and motivation company.

One of my favourite sessions of the event was Simon Sinek’s Thursday morning keynote, entitled “Start With Why.”

The focus of his presentation was on how organizations can advance not only as businesses/service-providers but also as employers by placing less emphasis on what they do or how they do it, and more on why they exist – reinforcing that if people believe in what you are trying to accomplish, they will follow you. My favourite line was Simon’s reference to Martin Luther King, Jr.’s famously inspirational speech, pointing out “It wasn’t called the ‘I have a plan’ speech.”

He used Apple as a prime example of this trend in action, both in the loyalty of their consumers as well as their ability to attract top talent. Simon believes the key to Apple’s success is not just innovative products, but what the “apple” symbol represents for many.

I think this speech really resonated with us because at Career Edge Organization, our vision and mandate is the very thing that drives what we do. As a self-funded not-for-profit organization, we have a small but mighty team of people here dedicated to our cause. This is why we’re so good at what we do, which is ultimately providing employers with diverse, qualified top talent.

As we recently launched our own brand’s new refreshed look, we hope that our kaleidoscope-inspired logo will be for us with the “apple” is for, well, Apple. That is, a symbol for what we stand for, believe in and represent.

Speaking of our new look, the folks behind our new, modern design, Tamm+Kit Communications, also had a booth at the HRPA trade show which they shared with TalentOyster. There, they debuted an inventive marketing piece shared three ways by TalentOyster, Tamm+Kit and Career Edge Organization promoting diversity hiring. Tamm specializes in employer branding and recruitment advertising, with a unique expertise in workplace diversity, while TalentOyster is an online multicultural employment portal and community connecting more than 5,000,000 households across Canada in 11 languages! Together, we brought a powerful and important message to the HRPA trade show.

It was a great fit with a conference whose recurring theme was built around innovation and more specifically, trends. With the recession shrinking in our rearview mirrors and a looming skills shortage on the horizon, innovative techniques for tapping the hidden, diverse talent market is the way of the future, and along with our valued host employers, Career Edge Organization is at the forefront of this trend.

We would like to thank the HRPA for having us year after year at this event, as well as all of the wonderful people who visited our booth at the trade show. We hope you enjoyed the experience as much as we did!

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