Keynote Speakers

2019 Conference Keynote Speakers

Hear from some of the brightest minds in talent development as you connect with peers and other professionals. We have three days of thought-provoking keynotes, sessions and networking opportunities planned.

Opening Session Keynote

Michael Karl // @TheMichaelKarl

Thinking Outside The Box: Seeing What's Possible

Everyone wants us to think outside the box, but very few people show us how. As a magician, mentalist, Michael Karl makes his living by thinking differently and making the impossible possible. Michael will both demonstrate his magic and reverse engineer his illusions to help you rethink your everyday problem solving. This session will enhance your thinking, shift your perspective, and shed new light on what is possible, all helping you to actually think outside the box.

Michael Karl is a Corporate Speaker and Mentalist for Fortune 500 companies. Michael started out doing magic when he was just 6 years old and began performing professionally at age 14. He was soon more interested in the psychology behind the magic. Michael was intrigued by human behavior and wanted to know why people do what they do and how to influence others. This led him to develop skills to become a psychological illusionist or Mentalist.  

Lunch Session Keynote

Beth Ziesnenis // @NerdyBFF

A Day in the Life of a Nerdy Professional

So many little time. How can you put the technology at your fingertips together to make your life easier at work and home? This fast-moving, laugh-filled session takes you hour-by-hour through the day in the life of a tech-savvy professional. You'll learn how a professional nerd solves a security crisis before 10am, learns to make more of a lunch hour with a set of virtual hands, saves money on software before the staff meeting and brings the team together online before the day is done. 

  • Understand how technology fits into every part of your day
  • Learn about technology systems that streamline projects and tasks
  • Get a vision for how the technology in your toolbox can work together

Since her first Commodore 64 computer, Beth has made a verb out of the word nerd. She helps computer users all over the country filter through thousands of apps, gadgets, widgets and doodads to find the perfect free and bargain technology tools for business and personal use.

Closing Session Keynote

Phil Gwoke // @PhilGwoke

When Generations Connect: Communicating Across Generational Divides

Four distinct generations are working together shoulder to shoulder, each with a unique set of attitudes, values and work styles. It used to be that older workers were bosses and younger ones took orders. Now, roles are all over the board and rules are being rewritten. Organizations are feeling the pain of generations as they struggle to manage productivity and morale while maintaining high standards of quality and service in a challenging economy. When Generations Connect demonstrates not only why it’s important to understand what shaped the generations, but why they behave the way they do. Find out how generation gaps hit the bottom line. Learn what to do about the approaching talent gap; grasp the keys to retaining the generations you need most and discover how to convert this form of diversity from an obstacle into an opportunity.

As an internationally recognized speaker, Phil has shared his wisdom and inspired audiences around the globe. Before becoming a speaker, he pursued his passion for helping people be their best selves as a high school teacher, college admissions professional, marketing coordinator, corporate trainer, and even small business owner. Phil is a firm believer that with the proper motivation, training, and support system, members of any generation can become capable of remarkable accomplishments.