September 25-28, 2017
Crowne Plaza Chicago West Loop | 733 West Madison Street, Chicago, IL 60661

Main Conference Day 1

Morning Plenary

7:30 am - 8:15 am Registration & Breakfast

8:15 am - 8:30 am Chair Opening Remarks

8:30 am - 9:30 am Keynote Address – The Recipe for an Engaging Brand

Ezra Englebardt - VP, Brand Planning Bai Brands
The challenges of large-scale enterprises are many. Through the natural silo-ing of business units, M&A activity, or simply an unfortunate side effect of healthy growth, a brand identity can get lost.  Oftentimes employee turnover and customer retention represent symptoms of a bigger brand issue. Ezra Englebardt, VP, Brand Planning at Bai Brands, builds a foundation as to the role of the brand in engagement:
  • What constitutes an engaging brand
  • How to effectively communicate a brand (promise, values, etc.) to employees and customers
  • What to do when you recognize brand issues
  • Rallying the C-suite around the importance of brand identity

Ezra Englebardt

VP, Brand Planning
Bai Brands


ENGAGE Employees

9:30 am - 10:15 am How Movement Mortgage Developed a Meaningful Organizational Purpose and a Culture That Resonates
Chris Allen - Chief Talent Officer Movement Mortgage
Movement Mortgage, the country’s fastest growing mortgage bank, was founded on a mission that was hardly financial.  With the goal of serving one out of every ten homebuyers in the United States by 2025, this growth isn’t slowing. Existing to love and value people, Chris Allen, Movement Mortgage’s Chief Talent Officer, shares how the organization’s people-focused purpose and culture has lead to the company’s success and rapid growth.  Learn just how a bold and perhaps out-of-the-box mission can be a game changer for holistic engagement (for employees and customers).  

Chris Allen

Chief Talent Officer
Movement Mortgage

ENGAGE Customers

9:30 am - 10:15 am A Personalized Customer Engagement Strategy: How Hallmark Creates Meaningful Moments for Employees and Customers
Rhonda Basler - Director, Customer Engagement Hallmark
Nothing can replace the personal touch in customer relationships. A recent collaboration between Hallmark and KCP&L proved the impact personalized customer engagement has on customers and employees. Increased satisfaction, stronger brand perception and higher employee engagement were the results. Learn more about how a Hallmark personalized engagement strategy is easy to adopt, align and implement for any business where building and strengthening relationships is key to increasing shareholder value and overall success.

Rhonda Basler

Director, Customer Engagement

Networking Break & Engagement Drive

10:15 am - 11:15 am Networking Break & Engagement Drive


In the diverse corporate landscape, there is no one-size-fits-all for employee communication.  Technologies and tools are many, but can your workforce handle one more login/password or platform to manage?  Moreover, the needs and preferences of Baby Boomers, Gen X and Millennials couldn’t be more varied. The session takes a look at best-in-class models for employee communication that lead to engagement.

Alex Masters-Goessling

Senior Manager, Communications and Employee Engagement
EA - Worldwide Customer Experience

ENGAGE Employees

12:00 pm - 12:45 pm Leveraging Knowledge in the Network: The 2020 Employee Experience
Laci Loew - Founder & Principal Laci Loew & Company
Bob Danna - Retired Managing Director Deloitte LLP
If you are responsible for leading a business function and optimizing the performance of people, then you are paying attention to the enormous impact that automation will have on your workplace and workforce. Machines and cognitive systems will change how work gets done AND how well it gets done. Machines are replacing many services jobs and cognitive systems are re-defining the capabilities of the knowledge worker.  The compelling message: become an expert or get automated. 
In this key note, Bob and Laci will offer insights on the transformation of the business climate over the last 20+ years, how today’s cognitive systems are facilitating the transformation of workers from information users to insights experts, how insights experts are expanding higher level cognition skills, and what you should be doing to leverage the coming together of technology (cognitive systems) and humans (insights experts) to maintain a relevant, high-performing workforce.

Laci Loew

Founder & Principal
Laci Loew & Company


Bob Danna

Retired Managing Director
Deloitte LLP

ENGAGE Customers

11:15 am - 12:00 pm Engaging the Right Community Around Your Brand: Billboard’s Cutting Edge Social Engagement Strategy
Billboard Magazine boasts one of the most engaged followings on social media. Though follower counts are impressive, engagement and interaction within their communities is what truly stands out.  Billboard’s social strategy lead, Stephanie Apessos, shares her journey in building and optimizing Billboard’s social presence, implementing creative and measurable social media campaigns, driving organic growth from fans and followers, and measuring engagement through social analytics to further hone their forward-looking strategy. 

ENGAGE Customers

12:00 pm - 12:45 pm Becoming a Catalyst for Holistic Engagement: How Concur Includes Employee Experience in the Customer Experience
Tabitha Dunn - Vice President, Customer Experience Concur
Customer Experience and Employee Experience often live in separate silos, but in Tabitha Dunn’s experience building out customer experience shops in three different organizations, she recognizes value in a holistic approach.  When allocating resources to new and existing customer experience initiatives, employee experience holds a critical seat at the table.  In this case study session, learn from Tabitha’s journey at Concur, where she has helped build out customer focused employee principles and the worked through what it takes to make change stick for employees while making the customer experience better.

Tabitha Dunn

Vice President, Customer Experience

Networking Luncheon

2:45 pm - 4:00 pm Networking Luncheon

Interactive Discussion Groups will leverage synergies between employee- and customer-facing functions to glean universal engagement benchmarks.   Attendees pre-register for a select three of the below topics, rotating between each of their choices every 30 minutes.  Each group is limited to a maximum of 20 attendees per group.  Discussion groups are capped to ensure attendees are engaged, ask pressing questions and meet fellow engagement leaders across functions.

Interactive Discussion Groups


2:00 pm - 3:55 pm Future Contact Centers: Customer and Employee Engagement Synergies
The importance of engagement is most evident in the contact center.  As the front line touch point for customer service, employees must be equipped and engaged appropriately in order to deliver excellent customer service.  This group explores the future of engagement tools and initiatives in the contact center.


2:00 pm - 3:55 pm Bridging Engagement: Linking VoC and VoE Programs
As Engage360 suggested, aligning customer and employee engagement is fundamental. This starts by connecting outcomes of VoC and VoE. Glean guidance on successfully linking these programs.


2:00 pm - 3:55 pm Keys to Retention: Keeping Your Best Employees and Customers
Even after creating a holistic engagement environment, you can never keep every employee and customer.  That being said, this group takes a look at out-of-the-box retention strategies to maintain key organizational resources no matter the situation.


2:00 pm - 3:55 pm A New Approach to Surveys: Aligning Strategy with Objectives
Eddie Doyle - Head of Global Customer Engagement Check Point Software Technologies, Ltd.
Such key feedback is gathered through surveying both employees and customers, but oftentimes survey approaches are off.  This group examines surveying strategy from a different perspective.

Eddie Doyle

Head of Global Customer Engagement
Check Point Software Technologies, Ltd.


2:00 pm - 3:55 pm Advocating for Empathy into Your Engagement Strategy
Megan Wimmer - Design Thinking Lead - Global Design GE Healthcare
Empathy represents the root of all engagement, for employees and for customers.  In busy, meeting-driven enterprises, empathy often takes a back seat to initiatives that perhaps exhibit greater ROI at face value.  This group takes an anecdotal approach to examining advocacy models and strategies to elevate empathy as a top organizational mindset.

Megan Wimmer

Design Thinking Lead - Global Design
GE Healthcare

Networking Reception

5:30 pm - 7:00 pm Networking Reception