Industry professionals flock to National HR Summit

by Janie Smith14 Apr 2014
Industry heavyweights from companies such as Google and Ikea shared their knowledge and inspiration when Sydney’s Luna Park hosted Key Media’s 12th annual National HR Summit.

More than 1,000 industry professionals descended on the fun park for the two-day event to attend talks by the likes of Google’s Sarah Robb, Joydeep Hor from People + Culture Strategies and Fair Work Ombudsman Natalie James.

There were also free workshops covering everything from leadership and workplace bullying to corporate styling and how to stay active in the office with “deskercise”.

Ikea Australia’s leadership and talent manager Nick Gotsis, who gave a presentation on mastering your own leadership presence, enjoyed the opportunity to spend time with others in the industry.

“Being part of the HR Summit was an excellent opportunity to network with other HR professionals to exchange ideas and share our common challenges. The speakers provided insight into a number of relevant and current topics.

“Personally, events such as these allow me to step outside of the big blue box and reflect on our Ikea people initiatives.”

Sarah Robb, who presented on Google’s corporate culture, praised both the summit’s venue and its speakers.

“The content’s been really exciting, people have such interesting things to say and such a voice to an industry that I think continues to evolve, being focused on data, being focused on change management, so I’ve really enjoyed it.”

Shiona Watson, Pepsico’s general manager human resources for Australia and New Zealand, attended the summit for the first time and gave a presentation on the art and science of leading change.

“It was great presenting, I really enjoyed it.  It’s a real opportunity for people to get connected  and share ideas and build the collective knowledge on things that make a fundamental difference to the role we play as business partners,” she said. 

Attendees were asked what they love about working in HR and Salote Cakacaka from Fiji Revenue and Customs Authority’s answer won her the summit’s $10,000 grand prize. She wrote, “As a catalyst, change comes from within. I have a passion to modernise HR that will enable growth for the economy holistically.”

Conference and event manager Kate Arnold says the summit was a huge success.

“Over 1,000 HR industry professionals enjoyed two days of insightful presentations and valuable networking against a backdrop of stunning harbour views.”


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