Hello LTEN community and happy July!
Did that sound as exuberant as I’m feeling right now? It’s an exciting time – for one thing, summer is in full swing, which is always an exciting time, especially for those of us with kids. But for me, mostly, it’s the aftereffects of our successful conference last month.
I hope you were there – about 1,000 members turned out for LTEN2023, our 52nd annual conference, and it came off perfectly. We had several days of keynote presenters, workshops, the LTEN Excellence Awards ceremony and poster presentations, Learning Village exposition hall meetings and programs, and our new Tech Demos.
Oh, and there was networking! Conversations in hallways, in breakout rooms, at receptions and events and, of course, over meals and refreshments. Greg Adamson, our president of the Board of Directors, challenged attendees to make new connections, and everyone rose to that occasion. Recall the second part of Greg’s suggestion and be sure to incorporate it in your daily routines – follow through, keep connected and build your professional support system.
You know what? I can help with that.
In May, the LTEN Board of Directors welcomed four new members, filling seats left open by retirement and job changes. So keeping with the networking theme that’s so important in our industry, let me introduce them to you.
Kristy Callahan first joined LTEN as a member about eight years ago, after hearing about the network’s value from her leader, Ashley Bentley, then an LTEN board member. She and her team have presented at LTEN annual conferences, as well as working on webinars for LTEN.
“It is an honor to join this esteemed group of learning leaders in the life sciences field,” Kristy said. “The fact that life sciences has a dedicated, focused group relevant to what we do and aspire to deliver is amazing. I want to be part of ensuring we continue to deliver relevant and inspiring content to our fellow learning teams.”
In addition to her experience, Kristy brings to the LTEN board a passion for leadership development and a focus on training beyond initial onboarding.
“Just like they say on the airplane – put your mask on first,” Kristy said. “As lovers of learning, ensure you are filling yourself up with whatever it is that you enjoy learning about.”
Brian Groves joined LTEN as a member in 2010, when he was new to training and wanting to learn more. He took advantage of LTEN workshops and built a network of people. He’s since brought many new members to follow his path.
“I joined the training industry less traditionally than most,” Brian said. “I had previously been a regional sales manager with no prior training experience yet was tasked to oversee the responsibility for a large pharma organization amidst a series of salesforce transformations and product launches. Were it not for LTEN training and the network of individuals it afforded me, I’m confident in saying I wouldn’t be where I am today. So, I’m most excited about the opportunity to give back and be a voice for LTEN’s vision and mission, affording those same opportunities for those who can benefit.”
Brian appreciates that LTEN has a focus on building a network.
“I sincerely believe there is no greater catalyst for business success than the function we represent, but we don’t always act like it,” Brian said. “We owe it to ourselves, our industry, and the businesses we serve to regularly demonstrate the value and significant return of investing in people.”
When Jim Page joined LTEN as a member in 2010, he was the only trainer at a startup biotech company. Suddenly, he’d found a whole organization for professionals like himself.
His roles changed over the years and he became a longtime member of the LTEN Advisory Council before joining the LTEN Board of Directors.
“I’ve had the opportunity to help the organization evolve and grow over the years,” Jim said. “Serving on the board excites me because it allows me to expand that work even further. I’d like to bring my passion for change management to help navigate how we, as a learning community, can enhance our response to the pressures and drivers our industry is facing.”
Jim has fond memories of many LTEN annual conferences, including meeting new friends at his first LTEN annual conference charity event. He’s hoping to keep the welcoming atmosphere he found in LTEN in place for next generations, which fits one of his passions:
“Without a doubt it would be helping new trainers learn the art and craft, hone their skills, try new things, and then watch their careers soar to new heights,” Jim said.
Brittany Pilcher came to LTEN in 2018, after transitioning from her role as a medical science liaison to commercial training. Her scientific background will give the board a new perspective on some issues and needs.
“I knew LTEN was a group of like-minded individuals seeking to deliver best-in-class training and I was focused on learning from this group,” Brittany said. “I’m most excited to join the LTEN Board of Directors because it will provide me with another opportunity to not only give back and help others, but an avenue to understand what is working well at other companies and continue to assist my teams in developing best-in-class learning and development.”
While Brittany and her team have enjoyed attending the LTEN annual conference (and taking pictures together at the photo booth), she’s really excited about the chance to make a difference for others.
“Overall I feel fortunate to have had the opportunity to work in a field that is making a meaningful difference in people’s lives,” she said. “I look forward to continuing to make a positive impact.”
We’re excited about the contributions the new board members will make to LTEN, and I hope you all are as well. Be sure to search them out via the LTEN Member Directory and LinkedIn to connect, welcome them and share your thoughts about LTEN.
Lauren Harbert is executive director of LTEN. Email Lauren at lharbert@L-TEN.org.