“These people just get it. You don’t have to provide context, you can just get into the weeds.”



May 8- 10, 2019

Pre-Conference Workshops (Additional Fee): Wednesday, May 8th, 2019
Workshop #1
8:30 am to 4 pm

Managing Under-Performers

Click here for a full description

Workshop #2
8:30 am to 4 pm

Getting the Best out of Your People

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“The pre-conference workshops were great.

Wonderful facilitation and great exchange of ideas.”

Main Conference Day 1: Thursday, May 9th, 2019
7:45 am
Breakfast & Networking
8:15 am
Welcome & Introductions
8:30 am
Opening Keynote

John Coyle – 

Olympic Silver Medalist, NBC Sports Analyst

John K. Coyle is a best-selling author, TEDx presenter, NBC sports analyst, university professor and Olympic silver medalist. His talks offer the intellectual and analytical rigor of an academic coupled with the inspired emotional storytelling of a champion athlete. John weaves facts, frameworks, and stories into experiential learning sessions that will activate you intellectually and emotionally!

A graduate of Stamford’s d.school, with a Kellogg MBA, John has served as Senior Vice President for a prestigious innovation consultancy, and the senior executive in charge of innovation for a Fortune 500 telecom company. John lectures and teaches innovation courses at Marquette University, Northwestern University and CEDIM University Graduate School in Mexico.

9:30 am
Breakout Session 1A

Susan Cook – Manager, Leader Effectiveness

Cardinal Health

Guarantees and Opportunities: A look at Preparing for the Off-Boarding Process

Research from the 2018 LDP Survey shows that over half of early career development programs don’t guarantee their participants a role after graduation.  Instead of a guarantee, these programs offer an opportunity.  Join Susan Cook, Manager of Leader Effectiveness at Cardinal Health for a glimpse into how they drive 100% placement without guaranteeing it.  Learn about Cardinal’s series of post-program workshops that empower its EMERGE program graduates to open their own opportunities.  Discuss the value of story-telling, methods on teaching tactful negotiation, contingency plans and an approach to handling “hard cases.” Take away an approach to help your participants achieve post-program success – whether you guarantee a role or not.

Breakout Session 1B

Josh Stewart – Vice President of Talent Programs & Accessibility



Discovering Green Pastures: An Exploration of New Sources for Early Career Candidates

Ever feel like everyone is hunting the same talent? Top campus grads seem to end up with multiple offers putting you in a highly competitive (and possibly very expensive) situation. What if you could save money and time by finding talent that may not be on everyone else’s radar too? Join PNC’s Josh Stewart for a critique of the early career recruitment paradigm. Come prepared to explore the risks and benefits of recruiting from non-traditional talent pools. Leave better able to assess if adding one of these new pools to your recruitment plan makes sense for your program and, if so, how you might get started.

10:30 am
Networking Break
10:45 am
Breakout Session 2A

Jessika Fabiano – Senior Manager, Early Talent Programs

Thermo Fisher Scientific

Harnessing Talent Through Strategic Partnerships: A Case Study

Campus recruiting has been reaching earlier and earlier in the talent pipeline for many years.  You may be regularly recruiting and hosting underclassmen as interns, and building relationships with high priority candidates over several years.  In its drive to invest in the future STEM pipeline, Thermo Fisher has taken it one step further by developing a strategic partnership with the State of Massachusetts that generates high school interns for the company.  Join Jessika Fabiano, Thermo’s Senior Manager of Early Talent Programs, for a discussion about the business case for having high school interns, how they got their program started, how assignments were structured, the contributions that high school students can and do make, AND the lessons learned in hiring really young early talent!

Breakout Session 2B

Kim Martin, Senior Manager, Early Talent & University Relations

Eaton Corporation

Building an “Early Career” Center of Excellence

Do the individual businesses own your programs, or do you? Sometimes that question is hard to answer – regardless of how your programs are funded.  A key decision in structuring development programs is whether or not to centralize their management; and many organizations have found good reason to switch from one to the other. Eaton Corporation has spent the last few years consolidating its early career programs within a center of excellence. Kim Martin, Eaton’s Senior Manager of Early Talent & University Relations, will share how Eaton unified the management of its various early career programs and how that centralization drove higher performance and faster career progression for their development program participants.  But challenges remain. Join Kim for a strategic discussion of the significant wins, and the remaining opportunities around retention, program control and strategic vision that stand before them.

11:45 am
Lunch & LDP Innovation Award Presentation
12:45 pm
Plenary Workshop

Mary Schneider, Senior Consultant – Leadership & Organizational Development

Wronski Associates

Building a “Community” within your LDP: Priority Number One?

Data from the 2018 LDP Survey suggest a correlation between a development program’s “sense of community”, and the program manager’s confidence in demonstrating the program’s value. Is community what it’s all about? One of the many challenges for professionals in our space is balancing the various needs of individual constituents with the goals of the program – and unifying diverse groups under a collective mission and brand. What if your interviewers hired for a specific assignment instead of the program?  What if you didn’t remove under-performers?  What if assignment managers didn’t deliver performance feedback to someone who was moving off their rotation? In this plenary interactive session, we’ll probe some of the positive implications (and risks) of having a distinct sense of “community” within your program. We’ll discuss the extent to which your program’s community has helped or hindered your program. We’ll share with each other strategies for building a healthy community (without isolating), and the extent to which you feel that your community influences your program’s brand, and value to the organization.

2:15 pm
Networking Break
2:30 pm
Breakout Session 3A

Jessica Gotwalt – Director of GMA Apprentice Development

Fidelity Investments

A Re-examination of Curriculum: Classroom & Experience

Leadership development program managers are constantly making difficult choices on how to improve the competencies of their program associates. Even sticking to a strict 70-20-10 diet of learning leaves room for fine tuning.  How do you know you’re getting it right? Jessica Gotwalt, Director of Fidelity’s General Management Apprenticeship program uncovered evidence suggesting that it was time for a change.  In this interactive session, she will share how her program evaluates success, what change were made, and the positive results of the new approach.

Breakout Session 3B

Craig Spencer, Technical Development Program Manager


Managing From Afar: Challenges and Ideas in Running Remote Assignments

As our programs expand, our personal reach is diluted. A program out-growing its own office may find that it can no longer rely on the tight relationships and personal recommendations that used to be sufficient to find assignment managers and hold them accountable. How can we maintain that accountability with our managers across distances – particularly when expanding abroad where cultural difference can complicate our communication and expectations? Craig Spencer of Baxter Healthcare will share his experience in taking his program global, with a focus on maintaining quality control in assignments and management. Whether your rotations span a state, a country or the globe, leave the session with ideas on how to keep your managers tight with your mission, if not with your specific location.

3:30 pm
Networking Break
3:45 pm
Rapid Fire Session

Program Management Topics

A popular LDP Summit tradition. Participant volunteers share a best practice, learning or challenge with the audience in 7 minutes or less.  A quick exchange of actionable ideas on program management to take home.

Rapid Fire Session

Recruiting Topics

A popular LDP Summit tradition. Participant volunteers share a best practice, learning or challenge with the audience in 7 minutes or less.  A quick exchange of actionable ideas on recruiting to take home.

5:00 pm
Evening Reception
Main Conference, Day 2: Friday, May 10th, 2019
8:00 am
Breakfast & Networking
8:30 am
Opening Plenary

Kim Gaber, Consultant


Early Career Talent in the Future of Work

What is the future of early career recruitment and talent management in the broader context of the future of work? How will early career fit into workforce planning objectives, and how can structured development programs stay relevant? 

9:30 am
Breakout Session 4A

Stephanie Cross – Exec. Ops Leader, University Relations & Global Leadership Programs

GE Corporate

Leveraging digital assets for rotation matching

If you’re lucky, you’ve got a whole bunch of data you can use to help manage and improve your programs.  If you’re luckier, you have technology that can handle the data and help you actually use it effectively.  Join Stephanie Cross, GE’s Executive Operations Leader – University Relations & Global Leadership Programs, for a look at how GE combines data and technology to manage the assignment matching process for the many rotational programs it runs.  Discuss different data-driven approaches to matching that will help you connect your participants to opportunities that move them forward. Learn what data to capture and an approach to managing it – even if your budget for new technology is out of luck!

Breakout Session 4B

Chris Smith – Talent Development Program Mgr.

The Walt Disney Company

You’ve underestimated their potential. That’s great… now what?

Are you challenging your new hires enough? Have you ever had an associate complete a six-month project in six weeks? A proper calibration of performance expectations goes a long way to cementing retention. Chris Smith and his colleagues at Disney recently launched a development program for technical hires, and were happy to find that they’d underestimated the chops of their new recruits. Nice problem to have, but… with sirens of the broader tech world ever-calling, it’s important to keep your hires energized and curious. When you aim for people capable of performing great things, and get them, how can you make sure you keep them? Chris will share Disney’s approach to keeping their high-flying tech hires engaged and lead a broader discussion with the group on ways to keep top performers challenged.

10:30 am
Networking Break
10:45 am
Breakout Session 5A

Facilitated Small Group Discussion

What Would You Do If..?

Challenging scenarios can get our creative juices flowing.  With your table colleagues, tackle a series of difficult scenarios often confronting LDP professionals and determine the best path forward.  Challenges will cover recruitment, selection, talent management, and topics sourced from participants.  Leave with ideas, anecdotes and contacts.

10:45 am
Breakout Session 5B

Facilitated Small Group Discussion

Senior Practitioners’ Meeting – Moving Forward Together

If you have oversight over multiple development programs at your organization, join your peers at this facilitated forum on big-picture strategic issues in early career development and programming. Participants will spend most of their time examining select topics in small groups and then briefly share conclusions/observations with the larger group. Topics will include early career talent management in the workforce of the future, proper program calibration and alignment with strategy, and other topics determined by participants in advance. The objective is to connect senior practitioners and generate useful strategic ideas.

11:45 am
12:45 pm
Breakout Session 6A

Sherene Peart – Sr. University Recruitment Program Manager


The Limits in Accommodating High Performers

Typically your top performers have a great deal of leverage, and sometimes they push a little harder than you’d like to get what they want. Negotiating limits while retaining your stars is one of the key challenges in our space. Sometimes you can bend; but sometimes you can’t. Join Sherene from BASF for a review of a particularly challenging situation with a high performer who ‘held out’ for an assignment that just wasn’t in the cards. What compromises were offered and what were the limits of what could be accommodated? Bring stories of your own experiences, share strategies and leave with a better sense of your own program’s boundaries.

Breakout Session 6B

Dan O’Sullivan


The Value of Welcome: Attracting and Retaining Top Talent by Improving your New Starter Employee Experience

Engaging candidates throughout extended graduate recruitment cycles; Maintaining consistency across globally dispersed locations;  Managing expectations around workplace and location; Defending against competing offers; Attracting and retaining top talent…These are some of the topics that Dan O’Sullivan of Benivo will take on in an exploration of early-career pre-boarding practices, drawing on insights gathered from thought leaders around the world on how to create a superior transition experience for new graduate employees. Conference attendees will also all receive a copy of Benivo’s new book, The Value of Welcome, a compilation of observations and practical advice from 30 thought leaders including heads of early careers at Amazon and Accenture.

1:45 pm
Plenary Session

Denise Flynn

Dir., Early Career Talent Solutions

The Hartford

Exclusive versus Inclusive: How do we balance?

Formalized development programs are only one component of early career talent management. Many organizations wrestle with what the true distinctions are (and ought to be) between a campus hire joining a program, and a campus hire accepting a “regular” job. Clearly, we want all early career hires to be wildly successful. So how do we determine what remains exclusive to program participants, and what would be valuable for all? Join Denise Flynn as she shares The Hartford’s experience working through these decisions, and facilitates a broader conversation on how we balance exclusivity with inclusivity in our overall approach to early career talent development.

3:00 pm
Close and Networking

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