Re-thinking content in talent management: Lessons from DisruptHR NYC

by Susan Keith Bleekman |

Last week, I had the pleasure to attend New York’s first-ever DisruptHR conference, an information exchange designed to energize, educate, and empower the HR industry. Unlike a formal HR forum, this event was designed to shake things up and encourage HR professionals to think outside the box, ask the tough questions, and brainstorm new ideas.

In addition to meeting representatives from incredible companies like leading media agency, MEC; technology company for the auto industry, CDK Global; and Bitcoin trading startup, itBit, I also had the chance to offer my insight on the power of choice and share my thoughts on why interactive content is necessary in the digital age for attracting and retaining talent.

Here are a few highlights from the evening...

Fearless, fast, and furious

Unlike other events I’ve attended, this was more of an “HR poetry slam” rather than a typical industry panel. Hosted by Casual Films, the event featured 13 speakers, each of who had five minutes to present as slides rotated every 15 seconds. This presentation format was designed to pack a punch and move quickly, helping the audience easily digest information while also provoking powerful thoughts and new ideas.

Gaining new perspective

Laurie Ruettiman, blogger, author and consultant, challenged the notion of company culture and chastised companies who think that adding a ping pong table will create “culture.” It’s not about what kind of beer is in the office keg or where you host your holiday party, but rather what kind of human atmosphere exists among employees. Everyone can have great beer, but not everyone has a great work environment. It’s time for the industry to start approaching this differently and acknowledge that Band-Aids aren’t enough.

In a laugh-out-loud presentation, Vadim Liberman, a talent management marketing and communications manager at a Fortune 100 financial services company, questioned the notion of authenticity. He proclaimed we all stopped being authentic at age 8, and what companies should really be striving for is for an employee who brings her best self.

My two cents

As for my presentation, I talked about the Power of Choice and why interactive content is so important in the digital age. While millennials have become the “buzz word” among marketers and employers, what are companies really doing to do to address the 53.5 million millennial U.S. workers who surpassed Gen Xers this year to become the largest share of the American workforce?

When trying to attract, retain, and engage talent, interactive content is a must. A societal shift driven by millennials means technology is changing the way we communicate and consume information. Gone are the days of push marketing. Now the focus is on fostering quality engagement and customizing the user experience to communicate with consumers and build personal relationships with a brand.



At Rapt Media, we understand the need for businesses to truly change and disrupt in order to reach their target audiences. It was exciting and encouraging to be among a roomful of people who share this sentiment and are constantly challenging the status quo in their companies and redefining the rules in the HR industry.

The opportunity for innovation through the use of technology is tremendous. Not only did everyone at DisruptHR recognize that there is not a more exciting time than now to remake your brand and redefine the rules, but it was great to share our experiences from a tech perspective on how everyone can reshape their organization.

DisruptHR New York was a pleasure to be a part of, and I look forward to learning from more industry disruptors at future DisruptHR events.

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