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Conference Sketch: Cannexus 2010 – Web 2.0 and More

by Miranda Vande Kuyt

 

My time at the Cannexus Conference exceeded my expectations. I went to Ottawa hoping to come back with a few good ideas to explore. What I found was each session chocked-full of interesting resources and ideas. Even the breaks were strategically set up to maximize delegates’ networking opportunities.

 

I focused my attention on everything web related, as that is my current field of work as a web content developer. The most prevalent trend that became apparent was that of integrating Web 2.0 technology into how companies are managed, how clients search for work and network and even how practitioners connect with clients.

 

I observed an expressed level of fear among practitioners related to navigating the new technology and apprehension that the technology could replace them. The response from those who have embraced Web 2.0 technology and have integrated social media into their everyday work was that the technology is not that hard to navigate, the costs are very minimal and it will never replace the benefits of face-to-face interaction, only enhance them.

 

Another thing that I noted was that although many are using social media, the use of it in career development is still in its infancy. It will become part of the standard way to search for work and network with people, just as the internet has become a standard way to search for job postings. In other words, it’s not going away. The companies and practitioners that embrace it will excel and be recognized for their progressive way of keeping up with the times.

 

The other sessions and keynote addresses I attended revolved around the ideas of career development as a series of life choices: decisions to make changes. Life stories can be changed by choosing to write a new story for our lives.

 

Clients can move through stages of change with a little help to see their behaviour as a choice through Motivational Interviewing. They can improve their positivity and increase their chances of success, health and happiness through Positive Psychology. Clients can even find motivation in uncovering their passion. These were the sessions that gave me warm fuzzies and reminded me of why I became a career practitioner in the first place – to help people.

 

Emerging topics I noted that practitioners are looking for more information about and will probably be the topic of a couple session proposals for next year are mentoring, coaching, work-life balance and succession planning.

 

Networking was definitely a highlight, as well as the good food, great venue and beautiful city of Ottawa. The conference was well organized and I look forward to attending Cannexus again in the future.

 

Miranda Vande Kuyt is an innovative Project Consultant and has been a Content Developer and Social Media Strategist for the past four years working on the www.passporttowork.ca and the www.workinfonet.bc.ca/youth websites. You can learn more about Miranda and her project consulting services on her blog at http://mirandavandekuyt.wordpress.com.

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