Building a Culture for Workers and Companies to Thrive in Times of Change


08:30 AM - 09:30 AM
2nd Floor Landing Breakfast
09:20 AM - 09:25 AM
Feinberg Theater Opening Remarks
09:25 AM - 09:30 AM
Feinberg Theater A Word From Our Title Sponsor


Gary Benedik, Chief Revenue Officer, Avenica

09:30 AM - 09:55 AM
Feinberg Theater Firing Up the Talent Engines at One of the World’s Largest Airlines (Fireside Chat)

Chicago-based United Airlines has grown to more than 90,000 employees, but it needs many more–and the industry is competitive for talent. The airline’s chief of people will cast light on the company’s innovative approaches to recruiting and training its workers–including its own flight school–as well as making mental health and well-being a major focal point.


Kate Gebo, EVP, HR and Labor Relations, United Airlines 


Stefan Holt, Anchor, NBC5 News

09:55 AM - 10:15 AM
Feinberg Theater Mapping the Human Genome of Potential (Thought Leadership Spotlight)

For more than 500 years, human beings have used resumes to assess the potential of individuals. While it may be tempting to think that the reason we still use them is because they’re a good indicator of future performance, the truth is that we just haven’t found anything better. Yet the reliance on resumes, combined with technology, is a catastrophic combination. Algorithms that scan for keywords, metrics, and skills effectively exclude more than 80% of potential job candidates. What if, instead of relying on an exclusionary demand-side search for skills and themes, we were to use an inclusive, supply-side approach, allowing people to demonstrate their potential? Through data science, performance coaching, and some empathy, we can change the way the world works.


Scott Dettman, CEO, Avenica

10:15 AM - 10:20 AM
Feinberg Theater Session Introduction


Tim Conway, Regional VP, Sales, Solstice

10:20 AM - 11:00 AM
Feinberg Theater Manager Effectiveness: Defining It, Measuring It, and Improving It (Panel)

Managers are a company’s connective tissue, especially in an evolving workplace. When they perform well, they hold all the parts together, enabling an efficient, collaborative, and healthy workplace. How can companies provide clarity about what their managers can do to be more successful–and offer effective learning-and-development programs to get them there? What are the most important behavioral markers for effective managers, like treating employees with respect and removing obstacles to getting things done? What innovative ways have companies discovered to support their managers, especially in times of uncertainty or crisis?


Kristy Callahan, Head of Learning & Development, GE Healthcare

Jaison Williams, SVP, Talent Management, Capabilities & Culture, Expedia Group 

Nicole Poole-McGill, SVP, Talent Development, Digitas North America

Steve Holder, Vice President, Solution Advisory, Visier

Gretchen Jacobi, Senior VP and Head of Enterprise, General Assembly


Alex Maragos, Anchor and Reporter, NBC 5 News Chicago

11:00 AM - 11:25 AM
Feinberg Theater In Case You Get Hit by a Bus: Helping Your Employees Organize Their Lives Now for When They're not Around Later (Thought Leadership Spotlight)

Everplans helps employees get the most important documents, policies, benefits, and information in place for themselves and their family, and helps employees organize all this vital information and make sure it’s shared with people in their life who need it. Join us for an overview of how Everplans works, focusing on key areas of planning and organization: important documents, insurance, financial, digital estate, and legacy.


Abby Schneiderman, Co-founder, Co-CEO, Everplans

11:25 AM - 11:50 AM
2nd Floor Landing Coffee Break
11:50 AM - 12:35 PM
10th Floor Landmark Room The Power of Feedback: How It can Make or Break Your Employee Experience (Workshop)

Recognizing feedback as a valuable gift is essential for fostering successful teams and organizations. This workshop delves into the genuine impact of feedback within organizations, emphasizing its significance and trends. Participants will engage in memorable exercises designed to amplify the importance of feedback and offer practical applications for their respective companies. The session also explores effective methods to seamlessly integrate feedback strategies into teams and entire organizations, drawing inspiration from examples and success stories of companies that have excelled in this practice.


Rob Catalano, Chief Engagement Officer, WorkTango

11:50 AM - 12:35 PM
4th Floor Rm 423A Motivating Beyond Money: Investing in “Emotional Salary” to Engage and Retain (Workshop)

Three-quarters of employees would stay longer in a job where they feel supported and valued than one where they do not feel that way but were paid 30% more. Creating a culture where employees feel a strong sense of belonging has true business impact, and there are actions you can take today to improve employee sentiment for every function and level. Learn the non-monetary factors that ensure employees feel adequately rewarded and learn from your peers in a discussion about challenges and best practices.


Caitlin Nobes, Lead Analyst, Achievers Workforce Institute

11:50 AM - 12:35 PM
4th Floor Rm 423B Building Belonging for Everyone (Workshop)

Join us for a transformative session exploring workplace belonging—a universal yet often overlooked necessity in many DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion) initiatives. We’ll uncover how a sense of belonging impacts employee engagement, productivity, and overall well-being. We’ll also discuss the risks a business runs when belonging is broken. Through interactive discussions, real-world examples, and practical exercises, we’ll be sharing knowledge and next steps to help inclusive-minded leaders drive meaningful, measurable systemic change. Attendees will aquire a deeper understanding of the importance of belonging in the workplace and be empowered to own their part in the process, ensuring that everyone in their organization can feel valued, respected, and welcomed. 


Teresa Hopke, CEO, Talking Talent, Americas 

Renu Sachdeva, Head of Client Solutions, Talking Talent, Americas 

12:35 PM - 01:25 PM
2nd Floor Landing Lunch
01:25 PM - 02:10 PM
4th Floor Rm 423B The End of the Transactional Workplace Is Here: The New Work Promise Cultivates a Resilient Organization (Workshop)

In a time of rising anxiety and shrinking budgets, maintaining employee engagement and confidence in personal and organizational resilience can feel like a daunting task. In this presentation, based on qualitative and quantitative research conducted by Keystone Partners, we'll discuss key findings: when, where, and what kinds of investments make the greatest impact on employee perceptions of stability, reciprocity, authenticity, empathy, and other leading indicators of individual and organizational resilience. We'll share how to identify these defining moments and discuss how leaders can positively impact resilience with strategic investments in employee development.


Tim Driscoll, Executive Vice President, Sales & Marketing, Keystone Partners

Shawna Simcik, Senior Vice President, Leadership Development, Keystone Partners

01:25 PM - 02:10 PM
4th Floor Rm 423A Leading Change: Brain-Friendly Change-Management Strategies (Workshop)

Change is now the norm. We’re living in an era where an organization’s capacity to change quickly and effectively is pivotal to its survival. The challenge? Our brains resist change and crave certainty. LifeLabs Learning is here to help! In this session, you’ll learn science-backed strategies to help companies and employees adapt, accept, and commit to change. You will discover the key skills to lead and reinforce change initiatives; practice your change-messaging skills; and leave with a strategic-change checklist you can use in any situation.


Meghan Pickett, Facilitator, LifeLabs Learning

02:20 PM - 02:25 PM
Feinberg Theater Session introduction


Brock C. Schroeder, PH.D., M.B.A, Senior Director of Recruitment, Case Western Reserve University

02:25 PM - 03:05 PM
Feinberg Theater New Voices: Bringing a More Inclusive Approach to Workplace Belonging (Panel)

Diverse workplaces are more innovative and productive, so how can employers make sure they're doing everything they can to ensure there is a genuine sense of belonging? What signals can management send to create the psychological safety to speak up–and feel heard? How can managers be trained to listen to their workers, both as individuals and as groups? And what has recent employee activism shown us about how management can be responsive in a mutually beneficial way?


Ekpedeme "Pamay" Bassey, Chief Learning & Diversity Officer, The Kraft Heinz Company 

Jeanette Kilo-Smith, Head of Diversity, Inclusion, Equity and Belonging (DIEB), Zurich North America 

Melissa Healy, SVP Employee Belonging and Participation Lead, Leo Burnett 

DL Morriss, Diversity & Inclusion Partner, Hinshaw & Culbertson 

Andrea Cooper, Chief People Officer, Talkspace


John Pletz, Senior Reporter, Crain’s Chicago Business

03:05 PM - 03:30 PM
Feinberg Theater Navigating the Maze: Ensuring Appropriate Care for Employees with Complex Health Conditions (Thought Leadership Spotlight)

While they may be small in number, individuals with rare and complex health conditions are spending a large portion of your health plan dollars. Whether it’s due to misdiagnosis, ineffective treatments, or overutilization as they wander from specialist to specialist, their healthcare spend continues to increase and their outcomes often don’t improve. Join Mayo Clinic and Aon for a discussion about how a collaborative approach between employers and their vendors can address these challenges head-on, delivering better outcomes and long-term cost efficiencies for forward-thinking organizations.


Todd Kor, M.D, Anesthesiologist, Associate Medical Director Contracting & Payer Relations, Mayo Clinic


Heidi Guetzkow, Vice President, Aon Health Transformation Team

03:30 PM - 03:50 PM
2nd Floor Landing Coffee Break
03:50 PM - 03:55 PM
Feinberg Theater Session Introduction


Gianna Bern, Finance Professor, Academic Director, Global Executive MBA Program, University of Notre Dame

03:55 PM - 04:35 PM
Feinberg Theater Cultural Transformation and Meaningful Work: Nurturing a Purpose-Driven Workplace (Panel)

In an era of rapid change, purpose-driven environments are increasingly more important. How can leaders navigate cultural shifts within their organizations that prioritizes meaningful work, foster employee satisfaction and belonging, loyalty, and overall well-being? What are the most innovative and essential rewards that can help attract top talent? How can leaders tap into the power of intrinsic motivation to create genuine purpose and fulfillment? 


Crystal T. Jones, Head of Talent Acquisition, Americas, John Deere

Mikki Sud, EVP, Global Head of Total Rewards, Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) 

Gus Viano, VP, Global Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, Brink’s

Trevor Bogan, Regional Director, Americas, Top Employers Institute


Kim Quillen, Business Editor, the Chicago Tribune

04:35 PM - 05:00 PM
Feinberg Theater Is Your Corporate Culture Stuck in a Rut? How to Create and Sustain a Growth Mindset to Nurture Talent and Intelligence (Fireside Chat)

In a new book based on a decade of research, social psychologist Mary Murphy shows that organizations and teams more geared toward growth inspire deeper learning, spark collaboration, spur innovation, and build trust necessary for risk-taking and inclusion. You’ll hear how this approach has been embraced by companies ranging from Microsoft to Patagonia–and how it transformed them.


Mary C. Murphy, Ph.D., Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences, Indiana University Bloomington, and author, Cultures of Growth: How the New Science of Mindset Can Transform Individuals, Teams, and Organizations


Steve Koepp, Chief Content Officer and Co-Founder, From Day One

05:00 PM - 05:05 PM
Feinberg Theater A Word From Our Title Sponsor


Gary Benedik, Chief Revenue Officer, Avenica

05:05 PM - 05:10 PM
Feinberg Theater Closing Remarks
05:10 PM - 05:30 PM
2nd Floor Landing Evening Reception