Day One: Monday, August 17, 2020

11:00 am - 11:00 am Lobby Opens

11:00 am - 11:05 am Welcome Orientation

11:05 am - 11:15 am Thoughtexchange App Introduction


Michelle Eppler Ed.D

Associate Vice President/Executive Director, Human Capital Lab & Dean, College of Continuing and Professional Education
Bellevue University Human Capital Lab

11:25 am - 11:55 am Creating the Learning Experiences that Impact Performance: Leveraging Data & Advanced Technology as a Strategic Asset

Richard Nuffer - Chief Learning Officer, Defense Commissary Agency

We live in a competitive world where business growth is critical for business life. Training can be a strategic part of that growth. In this session we will look at how leveraging data and technology and then linking them to organizational strategy can truly impact employee and organizational performance. 


Richard Nuffer

Chief Learning Officer
Defense Commissary Agency

11:55 am - 12:25 pm Immersive Creation: Developing an Aggressive Behavior De-Escalation VR Program for Optimal Impact

Tobias Washington - Head of Talent Technologies & Creative Solutions, CHRISTUS Health

Traditional learning methods have withstood the test of time, however with the implementation of various technologies that allow users to experience environments, tools, and situations as if they are actually there, organizations are able to impact and reinforce their workforce in innovative ways. Tobias Washington with CHRISTUS Health decided to pioneer the use of VR with its program to teach aggressive behavior deescalation.

In this session you’ll learn how CHRISTUS Health, in collaboration with SweetRush’s SPARK team, developed an innovative, immersive VR workplace safety learning program that helps care providers de-escalate potentially dangerous situations. You’ll discover key considerations that drove design decisions, including the learner audience, maintainability, and business constraints. Additionally, you’ll learn about leading-edge VR trends, including facial recognition, voice and tone recognition, and 3D avatar development. Whether you are a senior leader, designer, or developer, you will gain valuable insights as Tobias shares their journey from concept to execution.

In this discussion session, we will focus on:

  • Developing and identifying key considerations when designing VR learning solutions
  • How to successfully manage a client-vendor partnership
  • How to navigate decisions in the face of rapid change in VR technology
  • How leading-edge VR technologies such as facial, voice, and tone recognition were utilized to enhance engagement and learning efficacy

Tobias Washington

Head of Talent Technologies & Creative Solutions

12:25 pm - 12:55 pm From Volume to Value: Using Metrics & Analytics to Show the Impact of Leadership Development on Business Outcomes

For decades, learning and development professionals have been asked by business leaders to “show me the money” on the return on investment of leadership development programs. This request has been addressed in many ways over the years to varying degrees of success. However, learning professionals have been challenged in balancing the need for data to use for continuous improvement while simultaneously demonstrating how learning contributes to organizational success. Traditionally, rigorous measurement of the business impact and ROI of leadership development efforts have been time-consuming and often viewed as too little too late to be useful to business leaders. During this session, attendees will learn how to:

  • Use a perception-based evaluation process as a predictive tool for determining the effectiveness and impact of key leadership development programs on business outcomes,
  • Correlate “soft” metrics to actual hard outcome data, including ways in which this information can be used to recalibrate the soft metrics for increased predictive capability, and
  • Leverage insights provided by this learning metrics and analytics approach for continually improving learning & development offerings and for making better business decisions.


1:05 pm - 1:50 pm The Ripple Effect of Expansive Leadership
One of the most challenging moves a manger/leader is required to make is the expansion from what we call the Management Zone, (the doing, planning, budgeting, organizing, controlling, problem solving and directing) to incorporating the Leadership Zone, (effectively influencing in complexity, a way of being, setting direction, creating a culture, selling a vision, aligning people, motivating and inspiring) into their capacity and skills. In a nutshell they magnify their impact through others. 

Very often managers are reluctant to change their identity and let go of what got them here, it requires a mind-set shift, a new set of skills, competencies and a different capacity built through new habits and practices. For those leaders who make this expansion the rewards are positive because they create the space and conditions for their people to grow and to develop, engagement increases, creativity emerges, through greater alignment more is achieved in shorter timescales. 
  • Explore and contribute to a highly interactive conversation on how we support leaders to successfully make this expansion
  • Co-create practices to support leaders in developing the capacities and habits needed to lead in this more expansive way
  • Identify the core beliefs, values and mind-set needed for leaders to make this expansion
  • Support your leaders to create the space for your people to grow into by operating at the right level 


1:05 pm - 1:50 pm How “In the Moment” Feedback Inspires Action
Ideally, feedback should inspire people to learn, grow, and push the edge on what they are capable of. Sadly, too often it results in resentment, disengagement and damaged relationships.  

That’s a real problem—for your entire organization—because people need feedback so they can learn fast enough to keep pace in our ever-changing world. That’s why that so many companies are moving to “in the moment” development.  Clearly, the ability to offer feedback that engages and inspires is essential—and elusive. Join Dianna Anderson, CEO of Cylient, for a lively, interactive learning experience where you will: 
  • Discover for yourself how to offer “in the moment” feedback that inspires people to take action

1:45 pm - 2:15 pm Business Meeting

2:15 pm - 2:45 pm Business Meeting

2:45 pm - 3:15 pm Business Meeting

3:15 pm - 3:45 pm Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning: Practical Applications for Talent Development

Peel away the hype surrounding artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning to find the practical applications of these technologies in talent development and corporate training. You don’t have to been an AI expert to know that your company needs to wrestle all the data you have on your employees and training programs to gain contextual intelligence and knowledge about how to improve your workforce. 

  • Receive a review of these technologies in business terms (not technical lingo)
  • Obtain examples of how they are being used today in learning and development 
  • Receive ideas on how to get started without having to become a data scientist
  • Hear how OpenSesame is using machine learning to expertly curate course recommendations

3:45 pm - 4:20 pm Panel: Creative Approaches to Developing and Maintaining a Culture of Learning

What does it mean to have a Culture of Learning – and why is it so important? One of the biggest challenges facing organizations today is how to create the conditions where employees will take advantage of the learning programs and resources available to them. In most organizational cultures, there is very little individual accountability for learning, both in the formal and informal sense. In surveys, more than 50% of employees say they would engage in learning if they had the time, or if their manager asked them to do so. The challenge for L&D executives is to effect a culture shift in the organization; to integrate learning into the DNA of what employees do every day in their jobs. Having a learning culture within your organization means that employees recognize the value proposition of learning, embrace both the informal and formal opportunities, and take ownership of their upskilling and development without waiting for permission from their manager. Some topics discussed will include:

  • Establishing a culture of continuous learning where management prioritizes learning, models best practices, and recognizes and rewards employees who demonstrate learning behaviors 
  • Linkage between continuous learning and readying employees to develop skills for the future of work (and the changing landscape in the workforce). 
  • Compelling ways engage employees and create modern, impactful learning opportunities (i.e.: Gamification, Social Learning, Storytelling, etc.)

Roundtables: Mix & Match 20 minutes at each table


Michelle Eppler Ed.D

Associate Vice President/Executive Director, Human Capital Lab & Dean, College of Continuing and Professional Education
Bellevue University Human Capital Lab