Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Conferencing You In...

Start the decade off right by learning and engaging at conferences like these:

FEI's Summit Conference, April 26-27, Caesars Palace, Las Vegas. "Smart Business for a Strong Recovery" is this year's theme, and Keynote speakers are Gov. Mitt Romney, former Governor of Massachusetts and founder of Bain Capital, and Gary Loveman, Chairman, CEO and President, Harrah's Entertainment. The Summit conference features a choice among three tracks for break-out sessions: Executive Leadership and Development, Corporate Finance for Private Companies, and Finance and Information Technology. The registration fee for the conference is waived for new members of FEI who join by March 31 under our Connection Through Association program.

PLI's SEC Speaks Conference, Feb. 5-6, The International Trade Center, Washington, D.C. This annual conference, viewed as a 'must attend' event by many, lives up to its name in featuring speeches by the SEC Chairman and Commissioners, Division Directors, and many senior staff. It is also an opportunity to potentially announce major new initiatives, or specifics on previously announced initiatives. There is also an option to attend via webcast if you can't (or prefer not to) attend in person, although the in-person conference offers networking opportunities.

SEC Alumni Association Annual Dinner, Feb. 5, The International Trade Center, Washington, D.C. Each year the Association of SEC Alumni (ASECA) holds its annual dinner in conjunction with SEC Speaks. The focal point of the dinner is the presentation of the William O. Douglas Award, "conferred annually on an SEC alumnus who has contributed to the development of the federal securities laws or served the financial and SEC community with distinction;" this year's recipient of the award is former SEC Enforcement Director William R. McLucas, currently a partner with law firm WilmerHale.

140 Characters Conference, April 20-21, New York City. Also known as the #140conf (or by its Twitter handle, @140conf ( ), founder Jeff Keni Pulver (@jeffpulver) originally intended for the inaugural 140conf in 2009: "to explore the effects of twitter on: Celebrity, 'The Media,' Advertising and (maybe) Politics.” However, he notes, "Over time the scope expanded to look at the effects of twitter on topics ranging from public safety to public diplomacy." The theme of this year's #140conf is, "Exploring the State of Now."

The #140conf team is holding a series of local 'meetups' around the country throughout the year; I had the pleasure of attending one Tuesday night in New York City. Unfortunately I missed the first few speakers due to some priorities in NJ (and due to the fact that I had no idea how far of a walk 80 Greenwich St. would be from the parking lot outside the Holland Tunnel at 412 Greenwich St; I figured "real New Yorkers" would walk it, but eventually I hailed a cab) and I hope to have another opportunity to hear the speakers I missed (Anne Mai Bertelsen, Mai Strategies; Leslie A. Berland, VP Public Affairs, American Express; Dean Landsman and Dean Myers). But I did get there in time to hear some great insights on social media (basically, marketing and media in the age of Twitter) from Jeff Pulver, Bob Watson, and Hank Wasiak, including:

  • Transparency, Trust, Engagement important in Twitter/Social Media; there will be naysayers, engage them (@hankwasiak)
  • "Collabitition" is the new business model: @hankwasiak
  • RT @jennybai: Social media is the FIFTH P of marketing: product, price, place, promotion, PEOPLE. (@hankwasiak)
  • Social Media is a game changer; turns communication hierarchy upside down (@hankwasiak )
  • Twitter is the "new" telephone -@TopBrokerOC video
  • Networks we are creating online will drive business in the future: @TopBrokerOC
Read more highlights in FEI's twitter account @feiblog (, and see other's comments at or under hastag #140conf. Hattip to Francine McKenna, Managing Editor of Re: TheAuditors, (@retheauditors), for illuminating many of us among her twitterati last year on this.

Postscript (updated 1/20/10): I don't know if you've seen the front page article in the Wed. Jan. 20 NYT: "If Your Kids Are Awake, They're Probably Online," (the article could just as easily have read: "if your parents are awake, they're probably online") which notes:
The average young American now spends practically every waking minute — except for the time in school — using a smart phone, computer, television or other electronic device, according to a new study from the KaiserFamily Foundation.

The role of ubiquitous electronic devices (particularly mobile devices and 'near-mobile' devices) and social media in our lives- across virtually all age demographics - from WebKinz to CPA Island - is, as noted at the #140conf meetup, a "gamechanger," or, in some ways, the equivalent of yesterday's "telephone" (or even "website"). I know of one program organized by a group in formation of Wharton Women alumni who connected via LinkedIn, whose inaugural event on Jan. 28, "The Career Woman's Journey: A Traveler's Guide," has been advertised solely through social media. As always, we welcome comments from our readers.

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Hank said...

Enjoyed reading this post and some great information and asset-based thinking advice. Thanks for including some of my remarks from the 140 Meet up in NYC. It was a very lively session and the group advanced some good ideas.

Hank Wasiak

vineshkumar said...

Wow nice collection.thanks for sharing.
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