“You gotta be in it to win it!” the lotto ad declares. Our Training 2018 keynoters embody this philosophy. They put their heart and soul into both the game— whether it’s Jeopardy!, basketball, performance art, or storytelling—and the training needed to win it.”
Monday, February 12, 9:15 am–11:15 am
Itamar Kubovy, executive producer of the acclaimed dance company Pilobolus, has created performances with such diverse collaborators as the MIT Distributed Robotics Lab, the band OK Go, masters of illusion Penn & Teller, and Britney Spears. Discover how this unorthodox dance company is helping organizations apply their process of group design thinking to solve business challenges. As Kubovy notes, “The most important part of our training is untraining, figuring out what assumptions and habits people bring to the professional table that shut down communication and impactful collaboration. Unlearning is the key to a competitive advantage in the workforce.”
Mimi Onuoha is a new media artist and researcher whose work–which spans digital and physical media–uses data analysis, programming, writing, and sculptures to explore emerging forms of storytelling. She has been in residence at Eyebeam Art & Technology Center, the Data & Society Research Institute, Columbia University’s Tow Center, and the Royal College of Art. At the heart of Onuoha’s work is a series of questions: What if the structure of information reveals more than the information itself? What if the most important moments in a story are the ones we aren’t aware of? Onuoha will show through a series of projects the ways in which people are represented, abstracted, classified, and forgotten–something that unfortunately happens all the time in the workplace.
Alex Blumberg is the CEO and co-founder of Gimlet Media, an award-winning media company focused on narrative journalism and storytelling behind hit shows such as StartUp, Reply All, Homecoming, and more. Before founding Gimlet, Blumberg was a life-long radio producer at This American Life and co-founder and host of NPR’s Planet Money. Blumberg also served as executive producer on the television version of This American Life, which aired on the Showtime network and won four Emmy awards. Learn a unique approach to interviewing and story composition and discover how to create a “driveway moment”–that experience when the story is so good, it makes the audience pause what they are doing just to listen through to the end. Storytelling is in our DNA–now’s the time to put it to use in training.
Tuesday, February 13, 9:15 am–10:45 am
Living in Jeopardy!
An American author, TV writer (Bones and CSI: Crime Scene Investigation), and travel writer, this former comedian also has won more than $350,000 on various quiz shows (Jeopardy!, Greed). Who is Bob Harris? (Sorry, we couldn’t resist.) Harris is the author of Prisoner of Trebekistan: A Decade in Jeopardy!–a guide to how he studied and trained for the show. Harris became one of the show’s winningest contestants, and his book has become a longstanding bible for serious contestants. His book, The International Bank of Bob: Connecting Our Worlds One $25 Kiva Loan at a Time, details how he put his good fortune to use. The poster child for both the joy of learning and helping people around the world, Harris will share his views on making learning sticky, the importance of practice, and living creatively.
Learning to Accept Change
Former standout point guard Jay Williams, considered one of the most prolific college basketball players in history, became an ESPN full-time game and studio analyst in 2008. In 2016, he published Life Is Not an Accident: A Memoir of Reinvention. The memoir details Williams’ rise to NBA stardom, the terrible accident that ended his career and plunged him into a life-altering depression, and how he ultimately found his way out of the darkness. Williams’ book celebrates the critical importance of learning to accept change. He draws a parallel between his single-minded focus on basketball pre-accident and our collective identification with career and success. By sheer force of example, Williams will provide a roadmap for new possibilities and beginnings.
“Training magazine’s Conference was so much more than just a networking experience, it has been a (positive) game-changer in how I, and my colleagues, will conduct and develop all future eLearning for our mission partners!”
– Training Specialist-Learning Coordinator, United States Air Force Services Activity