Alex is the Content Specialist for HRN and curates the HRN blog. If you're interested in contributing to the site, you can contact him at alex.cooper[at]hrn[dot]io. You can also follow him on Twitter @wgacooper.

So here we are…the end of the 2nd Day at HR Tech World. We’ve had an incredible 2 days at the show and we’ll be digesting the discussions and exchanges that took place here for a while to come. And just like yesterday, here’s a brief summary of some of the key moments at the show.


Dave Hazelhurst opened the day again with a fun game of rock, paper, scissors, before introducing Jason Averbook.


Jason’s discussion focused on how to truly make an impact in our organizations we have to unleash the bravery within us to pursue risk. We have to be able to move past what Jason calls “OSMs” (or, “Oh, sh**! Moments). And this has been true for those at the event: Disruption and Innovation can only come from being brave enough to rock the boat. He emphasized that this is an unprecedented time in business and in order to move forward we have to “be brave, be bold, and be smart!”


As soon as Jason left the stage, Pat Petitti took the audience through an analysis of what the gig economy and the Future of Work have in store for us. He started with a little exercise with how we imagine our jobs when we were 10. Was it in an office? In a big city? That’s all changed.


No longer do people stay at one job for their entire lives, but they change jobs every 3-5 years. Pat explained that it is now us that dictate where we live and work instead of the work being the reason we live in a certain location. The idea of the lifetime “company man” ideal is no longer a reality. His explanation for that lies in the continued education of the workforce, a less unionized environment for employees, and millennials entering the workforce. The rise of the gig economy isn’t without its issues, though, like the lack of benefits.


After Pat’s talk, we moved on to the second day of breakout sessions and a huge lunch full of networking among delegates, vendors, and speakers.


Ending the show, Dr. Daniel Thorniley brought a bit more pragmatic tone with a dissection of Brexit and the election of Donald Trump, and the repercussions that this has on the world of work. He argued that though it’s been seven years since the Great Recession hit global markets, people are still reeling from the economic troubles it caused. The austerity measures that governments and international monetary bodies implemented have alienated individuals into rejecting who they perceive to be the cause of it. Brexit, for instance, was in part a rejection of the supposed EU elite. He also warned that Brexit hasn’t actually happened yet: There’s 2 years until the UK breaks with the EU once Article 50 is implemented.


Thorniley discussed how the rejection of the EU by Brexit voters is symptomatic of wider economics inequalities with the economic system. There are new disconnects between employers and their employees. Now, there is much uncertainty about where the markets are heading and what that means for everyday people and their work.


With that, we’re closing the doors on our London show and have our eyes on our San Francisco show!


A final thought that Dave left us with that, that I’d like to leave you with now: “Commit to action: create change on what you learned.”