Track 3: Build Your World

Tackling Unconscious Bias
Kyl Myers, PhD
Unconscious biases are social stereotypes about specific groups of people that individuals form outside of their conscious awareness. Everyone has internalized unconscious biases towards social groups that may not align with their conscious values. It is sneaky and can have negative consequences on people's experiences and can affect hiring and promotion practices as well as workplace environments and how companies interact with their customers. But have no fear - we can get our unconscious biases in check and actively work to improve our assumptions and interactions with others.

Join Kyl Myers, PhD, a sociologist at the University of Utah and a tireless advocate for understanding the social systems we live in and how we can improve them for this exciting session. Participants will engage in an activity that will help them take inventory of a time in their life when unconscious bias creeped in. In break-out groups, participants will come to realize how insidious and universal unconscious bias is and how we can work together to tackle unconscious bias in our lives to create a more equitable environment that genuinely celebrates diversity.


Campaign Buzz
Donna Corlew, FSMPS, CPSMFrank Lippert, FSMPS, CPSM, and Dena Wyatt
Do you have what it takes to work with a team to come up with a great marketing campaign or special event? 

Join us for this fun and engaging program where industry leaders will work with attendees in groups of 1-3 people in their choice of one of several workshop groups to develop their strategy and plan for a marketing campaign or special event. Each group will work with an industry expert utilizing the guidelines for the SMPS Marketing Communications Awards to develop their campaign or special event. 

Our industry experts will select the top three team ideas among our volunteer teams that want to pitch their idea to our judges and live studio audience during our closing shark tank style program – Survive the Hive where the audience and judges will be able to ask questions and vote via text message on our grand prize winner. These teams will work with presentation experts to help develop their pitch in the Buzz Lounge to prepare them to Survive the Hive. Can you survive the hive? 


Plodder or Plotter
Susan Murphy
This program will introduce you to some very successful people - most of them in the AEC world who have been there. Susan will show you how they went from zero to 70 and are either on the way to or living the life of their dreams. She will escort you through their lives, pointing out their plodding and planning, and explaining how those very things can be adjusted to your personality and talent and work for you.

You will take an in-depth look at a range of personality types, talents, experiences, and dreams and see how each person used plodding or planning, or a combination of the two to get where they wanted to go, even if they didn’t know until they got there. Some forged a path. Others stumbled along. All of them succeeded, but aren’t finished in their journeys.

This program is a reality show starring people you know and a few others. You will be able to relate to some of their stories, take pieces of some of their stories, and put these ideas and practices into your own life. 


Meet the Press - Panel Discussion
Moderated by Small Giants
Like any other discipline, there are best practices and nuances in working with the media and creating buzz for your firm. This is your chance to learn directly from a panel of journalists about how to create targeted, strategic press coverage that can produce results. The “Meet the Press” panel features a variety of press veterans, representing various media to engage in your firm's marketing campaign goals. They will share their insights on the best way to work with the press to secure coverage of your projects, products and services.  Learn who, what and how to pitch your story for the best coverage with the right message.  Moderated by a thirty-year seasoned industry veteran, this interactive panel discussion will allow you to ask all your burning questions and put your best pitch forward. 


Bee the Change You Wish to See in Your Firm - Panel Discussion
Moderated by Fran Pruyn, CPSM
As business landscapes and models change and the millennials become the largest professional group in the workforce, there is a shift in companies to be the change their employees wish to see in the world.  Social enterprise is quickly becoming a popular business model that generates profit to fuel social good. Defined as organizations that strive to positively impact the community through commercial strategies, social enterprise aligns firms to charities that meet their overall strategic goals.  In this interactive panel discussion, hear from firm leaders as they discuss how their firms harvested their philanthropic organizations and how these partnerships pollenated together to achieve their strategic goals.