Co-located HR Professionals and T&D Conferences Attract Record Attendance

November 8, 2010
More than 150 attended the 9th Annual HR Professionals Conference and the 4th Annual Training & Development Conference, which ran back-to-back with a joint keynote session last month in Scottsdale, Arizona. In addition to the keynote address on coaching for leaders given by Kelly Riggs, attendees had ample opportunities to participate in roundtable sessions, hear presentations by industry experts on a wide variety of topics, network at social events, and, most importantly, connect with their construction industry peers from across the nation. AGC Past President Doug Pruitt of Sundt Construction opened the T&D conference with a moving speech about the importance of training and development at the company level and the importance of construction companies engaging with their local educational communities to help increase the high school graduation rate and increase the potential pool of future workers. In his address, Mr. Pruitt challenged the group to "find the individual and collective courage" to challenge conventional wisdom to maintain a commitment to training even during poor economic times, something the construction typically does not do. He noted that "even with the very high unemployment rate in the construction industry today, the tremendous labor shortage we experienced a few short years ago is just around the corner and we will be staring it in the face once again." Mr. Pruitt also announced the winners of the 2nd AGC Education Excellence Awards. The first full day of the HR Professionals Conference offered a unique mix of both plenary and breakout sessions on drug testing and substance abuse management, the benefits and risks of using social networking and smartphones in the workplace, training and relying on field supervisors as an extension of HR, and a roundtable discussion where attendees were able to share best practices for keeping morale high during tough financial times. Highlights during the HR Professionals Conference occurred when two AGC-member companies shared their experiences with the attendees.  Maggie Doyle of Hensel Phelps Construction shared, from beginning to end, steps her company took to successfully perform an internal I-9 audit, as well as their response to an I-9 audit requested by the federal government.  Christy Uffelman of Mascaro Construction closed the conference with a high-energy, interactive session on communicating feedback, while sharing her company's success with rolling out a new performance management system. AGC would like to thank our generous sponsors, without whom the conferences would not have been possible: the National Center for Construction Education & Research, PAS, Inc., HireTouch by Imagetrend, and eMars. Due to the success of the co-located conferences - nearly half of each conference's registrants attended both - plans are being made to co-locate the 2011 HR Professionals and now, the Training, Education & Development Conferences. An announcement will be made once dates and a location have been selected.
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