HCMx Radio: Diverse Insights from HCM Excellence 2016

Do all good things really come to an end? I’d like to think not. That is how I felt at the end of our HCM Excellence Conference. It has taken me a little longer to write this summary than I had anticipated because there were so many interesting people from whom I gained great insights.


The three days were packed with workshops, interactive sessions, networking receptions, games, and a beautiful awards ceremony recognizing more than 100 award-winning organizations from more than 25 different industries across the globe.  It was humbling to see so many great people from all over the world come to our conference to be part of our pioneering community of inspiring HCM leaders filled with knowledge and the desire to share and exchange innovative ideas.

Our keynote speaker, Bonnie St. John, really hit home with her message on resilience. When she described her background and the challenges that she endured along the way … having a leg amputated at age five, growing up poor as an African American girl, without a father … yet excelling as an Olympic skier, Harvard graduate, White House official and now an established author, speaker, consultant, wife and mother. Her story is remarkable, and I will continue to reflect on it and use as inspiration for years to come, as I’m sure many of the attendees will as well.

During the conference I had the wonderful opportunity to interview on our HCMx Radio show the following amazing people. You can download everything here. My guests were:

Marlon Sullivan, Divisional Vice President/Talent & Development, Abbott. Topics discussed:

  • Empowering managers – implementing a global system by leveraging technology
  • to empower managers more effectively
  • Developing an Employee Value Proposition
  • Global benchmark trends within HCM
  • Resilience – taking it to the next level

Listen to Episode 25 with Abbott here


Rebecca Shoher, Director, Global Learning & Development Services, Dell. The interview included:

  • Discussion of topics from her breakout session, Great Teams Make all The Difference, including:
  • What does support look like from a global perspective
  • Entrepreneurial culture and striving for new ways of doing things
  • Tips for organizations that are growing through acquisitions

Listen to Episode 26 with Dell here


Steven Smith, University Corporate Vice President, Capgemini, and Dr. Regis P.  Chasse, Director of Curriculum, Capgemini. Topics discussed included:

  • Business transformation – turning their corporate university into a weapon to drive greater alignment and acceleration of their corporate strategy and market ambition
  • Targeting key populations essential for the company to achieve its goals
  • Hot content topics to their customers in their marketplace, including cloud, digital, as well as business services
  • Moving from next generation learning to digital age learning

Listen to Episode 27 with Capgemini here


Christopher R. Hardy, Ph.D., Director, Strategic Planning and Learning Analytics, Office of the President, Defense Acquisition University (DAU). Topics discussed:

  • Market analysis for strategic planning
  • Evaluation of new LMS, TM, mobile & social – how they all integrate
  • Learning analytics
  • Alignment of business goals with the strategic plan of the learning organization

Listen to Episode 28 with DAU here


Kimberly Shearn, Manager, Talent Development, Barnes & Noble College. Topics included:

  • Generational shifts in learning
  • Performance management tools to support the development and coaching process for store teams

Listen to Episode 29 with Barnes & Noble College here


Rachel Cooke, Chief Operating Officer, Brandon Hall Group


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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.