Talent Net Live the aftermath….

By Mark Sullivan

Mark_SullivanIt all started by a simple tweet back in April from Dorothy Beach making a comment about not being able to attend the Spring ERE Expo due to budgets and wanting something local. It ended up being (not my words but the attendees) “one of the best one day conferences I have attended in a long time”. Speakers volunteered their time and presentations and the topics ranged from social media to front line recruitment advice.

What made this event so special? It was spawned because of Twitter interaction and went beyond the typical tweetup. Frito Lay volunteered the meeting space and offered some great key note speakers, DFWTRN.org assisted by marketing and registration, along with helping during the day to ensure the event ran smoothly, the small ratio between “expert” and “attendee” allowed for quality interaction, discussion and new friendships.

Going back to my quote above meant that the goal that Craig Fisher, Dorothy Beach, Dennis Smith, Chris Hoyt and I set out on that conference call back in April to make this conference different than the others was accomplished. We wanted everyone to walk away with real deal advice and not just theory or a “how to if you are a large company with deep pockets” presentation deck. We wanted quality discussions and tried to set up the presentations to allow the various levels of recruitment experience attend a session that was a fit with their level of expertise. We wanted it to be a conference that people passionate about their trade could come and present without being paid a fee but because they want to share their knowledge and interact with others just as passionate.

It still blows my mind that based on a tweet, Bill Boorman contacted me and asked if he could be a speaker. When I explained that we did not have any money to pay his way or for his services he stated no problem. His first trip to Texas was for this event and he delivered a great presentation that had the room not only laughing at times but taking notes on best practices.

It still blows my mind that people I had never met except for a few Twitter interactions were able to get together and drive this thing for no benefit except to advance the knowledge of their peers. Dorothy and Jim we owe you so much for carrying the bulk of the logistics.

It still blows my mind that at the end of the day what started as five people on a phone call ended up being a charity event with $1,000 going to the FallenHereosFamilySupportFund.com a local non-profit organization helping the families of those firefighters that have paid the ultimate price.

It still blows my mind that over a week after the event I am still reflecting on the presentations, the quality of people that attended and that my team was able to experience this with me.

It still blows my mind that it only took one tweet….to give me one of the best learning experiences of my professional career.

Posted in 2009 Conference, Blog.


  1. I whole-heartedly agree with Mark’s comments. As a presenter and attendee (I learned a lot, too), I must say that the event was very professional, educational, and fun. Attendees were great. They asked terrific questions during the presentations and we’re fully engaged.
    The entire planning team executed a home-run experience as this turned out to be a top-tier event leveraging volunteers and donated facilities.
    Way to go, TalentNet Live!


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