October 09, 2012

The 3% Conference: a phenomenon part II

As promised here is part II of my 3% Conference recap. I hope you all enjoy these posts as much as I enjoyed the actual conference!

During this session, Kat interviewed Tom Jordan and Courtney Buechert on stage. Suffice to say these men do get it. And here I must mention my early morning hours—you’ll see why. My conference day began next to the elevators on the 5th floor of the conference hotel. A man who later turned out to be Tom, one of this session’s panelists, kept up a commentary on the psychology of elevators that had me laughing. When we saw each other on the auditorium floor about 30 minutes later, we pointed at each other and laughed. He is one delightful fellow.

At this point the first of two breakout periods began. This breakout’s panel of Sally Thornton of Forshay and Will Burns of Ideasicle was moderated by Shelli Strand of STRAND Strategy Partners and covered trends in recruitment and engagement strategies. Will’s description of the unusual structure at Ideasicle was interesting, and Sally, a recruiter for contract projects in marketing and HR, kept me focused on every word.

This was the session I moderated. Panelists Nancy Hannon, Kammie McArthur, and Cheeraz Gorman shared their thoughts on mentorship and fielded questions from how to make time to mentor others in an agency environment to how they choose and use their own mentors. With such an engaged audience, much of the session felt more like a warm conversation between the panelists and the women packed into the space. (Standing room only!) One audience member volunteered to mentor another on the spot.

Nancy Hill of the 4As moderated this session, with panelists including Sam Jhans of Améredia, Jennifer Pozner of Women in Media & News, and Lauren Connolly of BBDO discussing what agencies with the best track record for female leadership do differently. I admired Jenn’s strategy to support those in the minority: she won’t speak at an event if there aren’t other women or non-Caucasian women speaking. During the Q&A, Cindy Gallop took the stage once more to address an audience member’s distress at seeing members of her generation leaving the agency environment. Cindy and Kat brought the house down for a fitting finale to a truly great conference—one I won’t soon forget.

I can’t wait for next year—if I could register now, I would.

Guest blogger Tiffany Jonas manages the Verbal Branding department at Addison Whitney. She spends her days developing taglines and brand names for companies, products, pharmaceutical drugs, clinical trials, and just about anything else you can think of.

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