We just returned from sponsoring and attending the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering Professional Development Conference in Calgary, September 14-17, 2014.
What an amazing event. Twelve hundred participants from across Canada, the US and International descended on Calgary for four days of networking, learning and developing best practices. They even had live streaming of certain sessions and key notes for people who could not make the conference.
Our client, www.csse.org, is having us develop a brand new web based app for North American Occupational Safety and Health Week that will be launched this January 2015. At the conference, we launched the Beta version of what will be called #MakeSafetyAHabit.
This app is web based, designed from ground up to be responsive and will be a valuable tool for all partners of NAOSH 2015.
The sessions that I attended dealt mostly with leadership and communication of safety in the workplace. The speakers were diverse and interesting and I found the experience highly valuable.
One of the most memorable moments for me was that one of the presenters, Tanya Steele, spoke on effective communication. She had us all close our eyes and hold onto a piece of 8.5″ x 11″ paper. The instructions were as follows:
- fold the piece of paper in half
- grab the two corners and fold them into each other
- fold the paper in half again
- on the right side of the paper now cut out a half moon shape
- open your eyes, unfold the paper and show it to everyone
When everyone looked at the outcomes, everyone’s paper looked different. Some had crescents ripped out of the side of the paper, some had two holes and some had four. The objective of this lesson is that we all received the same instructions, but interpreted them completely different. A great lesson to be learned when developing a marketing strategy. Are people truly going to understand what we want them to do? Why don’t we test it before going to market?
If you want a true flavour of the entire conference go to www.twitter.com and look up #cssepdc2014.
Lots of great nuggets of information and some really humorous comments!
Two keynote speakers stood out for me.
The first was on the Monday morning and she woke everyone up. Her name is Cheryl Cran and she spoke on being passionate about what you do and fast paced change in the workforce. The other was Dr. John Izzo who wrapped up the conference. Dr. Izzo gave an amazing, impassioned speech on 100% Responsibility, 0% Excuses. Here is a copy of the video.
The other part of his speech was The Five Rows. . . it is well worth a watch!
Now, the greatest opportunity for CMYK Solutions was sponsoring Exhibitor Bingo. This was a terrific idea that was brought to the table in order to get people thinking about visiting all 100+ exhibitors during the conference. Each bingo card had a different 25 exhibitors on it. You brought your card to the booth, they stamped it and when you filled a card, you were entered to win an IPad Mini 32 gig with Wifi and Cellular donated by CMYK Solutions.
Here is what the Bingo cards look like. Do you think we got great exposure for our donation? I believe we did!
When you go to conferences, determine what you want to get out of it before you go in. For us, we wanted exposure, to learn, to network and to support a client. We achieved all four facets and are very much looking forward to being in Ottawa in 2015 for next year’s conference.