HCMx Radio 36: Voices from Generations Y and Z

I hope everyone is enjoying the summer so far and had a wonderful Fourth of July!  I spent the last couple of days with my family in the Florida Keys doing all sorts of fun activities including paddle boarding, fishing, playing tennis, yoga on the beach, and taking a sunset cruise to watch the fireworks. On my drive back from the Keys I thought how fortunate we are to live in a country of freedom where you can express your views openly, follow your faith of choice, and be rewarded for your talents and hard work. I’m proud to say my country is the “Land of the American Dream!” Image-1

Also, this week our team at Brandon Hall Group celebrated our 36th episode since we launched HCMx Radio in 2015.  Up to now, we have had a variety of leaders from great companies spanning across various industries such as Prudential, Xerox, Edward Lifesciences, Dell, LinkedIn and Abbott Laboratories among others.

Our 36th episode is unique because we have our fantastic GenY marketing and design team from Brandon Hall Group sharing updates on what is going on behind the scenes in preparation for our HCM Excellence Conference in 2017, including some highlights on Brandon Hall Group HCMA workshops.

Being this week is the celebration of Independence, I thought it would also be a fun and unique experience to invite our boys to HCMx Radio.  In return, our team is curious to gain an understanding about some of the ways their generation – Generation Z — is learning. We have seen so much progress and evolution in learning over the years, which we continue to witness as new generations come into the workforce that have different expectations, needs, and ways to communicate and learn.

You can download the podcast anytime at the HCMx Radio site.

Guest Bios:

Melissa Benavides, Senior Marketing Specialist, Brandon Hall Group.

Melissa is responsible for graphic design, web design, marketing and coordinating parts of Brandon Hall Group’s annual HCM Excellence Conference. She works out of our headquarters in Delray Beach, Fla., and is a South Florida native. Melissa is a Christmas baby, has a passion for health, fitness and wellness, but she won’t pass up a basket of hot chicken wings with a side of fries.

Nissa Benjamin, Marketing Coordinator, Brandon Hall Group. Nissa manages sponsored and in-house webinars and creates graphics and layouts for publications and assists with operations of Brandon Hall Group’s annual HCM Excellence Conference. She also is co-founder of a non-profit organization, The 3G Project.

Logan Cooke completed the 6th grade with honors and played on three baseball teams, including his school team and a Little League team, where he was an integral part of a championship season.

Chase Cooke completed 3rd grade with straight As, received the highest reading points total of all of the school up to the 8th grade, and was a star in Annie; the play was an incredible school production. Chase, like his brother, is a lover of sports and played on several baseball teams, including an All-Star team in June.

               –Rachel Cooke, Chief Operating Officer, Brandon Hall Group @RachelCCooke

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Mike Cooke



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Mike Cooke

Chief Executive Officer of Brandon Hall Group Mike Cooke Prior to joining Brandon Hall Group, Mike Cooke was the Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of AC Growth. Mike held leadership and executive positions for the majority of his career, at which he was responsible for steering sales and marketing teams to drive results and profitability. His background includes more than 15 years of experience in sales, marketing, management, and operations in the research, consulting, software and technology industries. Mike has extensive experience in sales, marketing and management having worked for several early high-growth emerging businesses and has implemented technology systems to support various critical sales, finance, marketing and client service functions. He is especially skilled in organizing the sales and service strategy to fully support a company’s growth strategy. The concept of growth was an absolute to Mike and a motivator in starting AC Growth, in order to help organizations achieve research driven results. Most recently, Mike was the VP and General Manager of Field Operations at Bersin & Associates, a global analyst and consulting services firm focused on all areas of enterprise learning, talent management and talent acquisition. Tasked with leading the company’s global expansion, Mike led all sales operations worldwide. During Mike’s tenure, the company has grown into a multi-national firm, conducting business in over 45 countries with over 4,500 multi-national organizations. Mike started his career at MicroVideo Learning Systems in 1992, eventually holding a senior management position and leading all corporate sales before founding Dynamic Minds. Mike was CEO and Co-Founder of Dynamic Minds, a custom developer of software programs, working with clients like Goldman Sachs, Prentice Hall, McGraw Hill and Merrill Lynch. Also, Mike worked for Oddcast, a leading provider of customer experience and marketing solutions, where he held a senior management position leading the company into new markets across various industries. Mike also serves on the Advisory Board for Carbon Solutions America, an independent sustainability consulting and carbon management firm that specializes in the design and implementation of greenhouse reduction and sustainability plans as well as managing the generation of carbon and renewal energy and energy efficiency credits. Mike attended University of Phoenix, studying Business Administration and Finance. He has also completed executive training at the Chicago Graduate School of Business in Chicago, IL.