By: Erin Powell, VP of Sales at Blue Ocean Brain
After scaling back work travel for the past three years, Blue Ocean Brain's recent trip to Orlando for the ATD International Conference & EXPO was a refreshing change of pace.
With over 10,000 attendees and an opening Keynote by the ever-inspiring Spanx founder Sarah Blakely, I knew this would be a trip to remember. The conference reminded me that talent development is versatile, with many different approaches and journeys along the way!
We all want to learn new skills and feel challenged, but I've never been in the same space with so many people also striving toward that goal. I spent most of the time with my team (a mixture of our founders, sales, client success, and content teams) and at our booth in the Vendor Showcase. Over and over again, I was struck by how collaborative they and this entire industry are. My team is agile and passionate, and all of them are team players for our clients. Every detail of the trip kept clients and prospective clients top of mind.
Our Chief Learning Officer, Claire Herring, spoke on Sunday about cultivating success in the hybrid world of work. Attendees raved about her use of humor, practical tips, and collaboration during the session! Now, more than ever, clients appreciate our microlearning being concise and engaging, knowing there's so much competition at work and home for employees' time. Leaders recognize that soft skill development in areas like DEI, leadership development, and resiliency are critical to the overall success of an organization and the employee experience.
The biggest takeaway I had was this: learning and development is an industry full of people who care. We care about the growth of others and the constant journey to learn, not always arriving at a set destination. This week I learned from people who have similar goals as me and people who have walked different paths. I shared stories of triumph and heartache, danced the night away, laughed until I cried, and left the conference filled with hope about the hunger for learning among my peers.
Thank you, ATD, for bringing together the best of the best in our industry when we all needed it!