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8 Great Sessions in SXSW Workplace Track

The Forrest Four-Cast: March 11, 2018

  1. Dear HR: Ditch the Pool Table & Pay Student Loans. Total outstanding student debt exceeds $1.4 trillion with a significant portion held by millennials, the largest cohort in the U.S. workforce. To address this, more and more companies are starting to provide their employees with student loan repayment assistance. This benefit is a powerful new tool to improve employee acquisition, engagement, and retention. The session will delve into how companies implement loan repayment programs and highlight the positive impact on employees. Scheduled at 11:00 am in Manchester A at the Fairmont.
  2. Your Diversity Recruiting Isn’t Actually Diverse. Diversity fosters innovation and drives market growth. However, diversity isn’t only about your ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation. Liz Wessel, Co-Founder and CEO of WayUp will explain that today’s most productive workforces include individuals with acquired diversity traits too — such as varied viewpoints, beliefs, and experiences. Learn why recruiting candidates that display both inherent and acquired diversity is a game-changer for your company. Scheduled at 11:00 am in Manchester B at the Fairmont.
  3. The Future of AI and Hiring. AI is revolutionizing the way we manage talent. For decades, people were hired based on a recruiter’s 6-second impression of a resume, leading to a dismal ~50% retention rate after the first year and documented bias against women, minorities and people with a lower SES. Frida Polli, co-founder + CEO of pymetrics, and Tatiana Goldberg, Director of Leadership Development at Unilever, will discuss how neuroscience, gamification, and applied AI are diversifying and disrupting the labor market. Scheduled at 12:30 pm in Manchester B at the Fairmont.
  4. Unique Veteran Employment Strategies. Over 200K skilled veterans enter the civilian workforce each year. Yet many see vets as only capable of entry-level roles, typecast to serving as “security guards, truck drivers, and mechanics.” How can your company go beyond “Thank you for your service” and smartly hire, retain, and promote members of the military community? Hear how four tech companies increased diversity and improved customer experience while boosting the bottom line through full-spectrum veteran programs and how you can too! Scheduled at 12:30 pm in Manchester A at the Fairmont.
  5. A Seat at the Table: Creating Inclusive Spaces. Using Solange’s album as a backdrop, A Seat at the Table: Creating Inclusive Spaces will focus on providing strategies to break down systemic challenges for people of color in the workplace. Audience members will participate in activities that help them understand the concepts that undergird “the table,” and the impact it has on employees of color. Note that this session requires advance RSVP — although some spots may open onsite. Scheduled at 3:30 pm in the Indigo Room at the Fairmont Hotel.
  6. Culture Shock: How Company Policy Slows Innovation. What came first, the company or the culture? What happens when employers fit the company to the individuals, rather than the other way around? Cultivating individuality, physical and emotional well-being, and personal development can reap an indomitable sense of community and do wonders for productivity and efficiency in the office. In this session, we will explore the ways in which culture can be adapted to nurture employees, cultivate individuality, and increase productivity. Scheduled at 3:30 pm in Manchester A at the Fairmont.
  7. Augmented Reality: Job Killer or Economic Savior? With the debut of low-cost glasses in 2018 and 500 million anticipated by 2021, AR is set to quickly change how we work, shop and play. While the rise of smartphones & the zettabytes of data transmitted daily in cloud computing all point to this impending future, a new amalgamation of exponential technologies (machine learning, augmented reality, IOT sensors, and mobile computing) are going to impact employment as never before. Learn which skills will be in demand and which jobs will disappear. Scheduled at 5:00 pm in Manchester B at the Fairmont.
  8. Power to the People: Turn Employee Ideas Into Gold. Every day, organizations miss out on thousands of brilliant ideas from their closest captive audience: their employees. And when employees are not listened to, toxic cultures develop and get called out online or in the press by frustrated, disempowered employees. So there’s a double incentive to tune into employee feedback. This session discusses disruptive approaches to removing the barriers to hearing great feedback from your people, and the unexpected outcomes that follow from this approach. Scheduled at 5:00 pm in Manchester A at the Fairmont.

Want to attend these and the 2000+ other great sessions at March Magic 2018? Buy your badge online and be part of all the creativity, innovation and networking that makes SXSW so special!

Hugh Forrest serves as Chief Programming Officer at SXSW, the world’s most unique gathering of creative professionals. He also tries to write at least four paragraphs per day on Medium. These posts often cover tech-related trends; other times they focus on books, pop culture, sports and other current events.

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Celebrating creativity at SXSW. Also, reading reading reading, the Boston Red Sox, good food, exercise when possible and sleep sleep sleep.

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