5 Key Takeaways: The Brandon Hall Human Capital Management Conference

5 Key Takeaways: The Brandon Hall Human Capital Management Conference

What is the role of the human in the organization?” – Question posed by a Chief Learning Officer at the HCM Conference this past week.

AI was definitely the ‘topic du jour’ at Brandon Hall’s annual Human Capital Management Conference.

The conference is attended by 400+ senior learning and development and talent professionals along with a variety of coaching, consulting and training firms and technology providers.

We attended to learn and to accept two Brandon Hall Gold Awards along with two of our long-term clients. You can read more about our award wins here.

Conference learning can easily go into a notebook and then get shelved. In an effort to not have that happen, here are my top 5 takeaways on the most talked about trends so that we can all act on the learning together:

  1. AI is coming and is going to be able to do about 40% of your current job. That was an eye opening stat to me. Particularly as we are in the middle of talking about adding roles to The Roundtable team. Instead, I’m going to start looking at what we can eliminate from current roles and replace with AI. From the sessions we participated in, there’s a lot that can be moved off of our plates. My key takeaway is that everyone is still trying to figure out how AI will impact today’s workers. What I do know is that if you’re not learning about AI, you’ll be at risk. Upskilling in this area was one of the biggest discussion points on the panels.
  2. So-called ‘soft’ skills are going to be the new leadership currency. While AI is predicted to be able to take on a huge slice of technical jobs, leaders who can think critically and make decisions based on that AI output will be in high demand. And, EQ… AI can’t replace that (yet). Expect more emphasis on relational skills moving forward according to many of the CLO’s and CHRO’s on the panels I saw.
  3. Your leaders are your best teachers. There is a huge trend towards leveraging your internal leadership talent to deliver training and development programs. We’ve certainly seen that through our Roundtable Catalyst program: your internal people bring context and insights that an external trainer simply can’t match. Selecting the right people and skilling them up will be key. And, hopefully, AI will be able to free up their time to take this work on.
  4. Pods, circles, cohorts… it’s all about intimately sized groups to drive impact. Every leadership panel talked about the importance of having leaders work in small groups, over time to truly have transformative change. (Long time members of The Roundtable community will know we’ve been on this ‘trend’ for over sixteen years now!)
  5. Play the long game. Too often development has been put into one- or two-day programs and even one year programs aren’t enough. Development pathways need to be looked at over time and the question we need to ask ourselves as talent professionals is this one: how do we maintain the impact of the learning once the formal program is completed?

There were also lots of interesting ideas and strategies that different companies were employing to retain and grow talent: programs to keep retirees engaged; internal gig markets where people could put their hands up for special projects and experiences outside of work; and so many interesting AI and technology innovations that will be interesting to see unfold.

Check out the Brandon Hall website for future conferences and events.



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