SAN JOSE, Calif. - Issues surrounding workforce - which are cited as the overriding concern for wood industry managers - will be broadly addressed at the 2019 Executive Briefing Conference, with sessions focused on recruitment, development, education and retention of what for any business is its most important asset: human resources. The 15th annual EBC, a high-level top management gathering, runs April 14-16 at the San Jose Marriott. 
Subjects covered at the upcoming EBC will be anchored in the intersection of technology and workforce, a factor figuring in rationales for technology investment - itself a subject of a CEO panel on investment, as well as a session on Manufacturing Execution Systems, the operating systems that optimize factories by linking automated processes and manually-operated work cells. 
Drawing on its location in Silicon Valley, among the world's most competitive markets for personnel, EBC has invited Danielle Clark, Adobe's Director of Talent Development, to address ways the software giant goes about improving its own workforce. At a luncheon address on April 15, "Getting the Most from Your People," Clark will reveal how Adobe supports individuals in career paths that embrace professional development and self-actualization. The approach yields more satisfied and productive individuals who form a powerful engine for Adobe's success. 
As Director of Talent Development at Adobe, Clark is responsible for a global team which creates and delivers development programs for employees. She is an expert in assessment, facilitation, program design and coaching. Clark's consulting background includes work with Hay Group - Korn Ferry in organizational design and leadership transformation. Clark says her approach is driven by an unwavering curiosity in why people do what they do. 
Among other human resource-oriented sessions will be a presentation about the Woodwork Career Alliance, which developed and manages a wood industry employee qualification credentialing system. During the Welcome Dinner on April 14, presenter Patrick Molzahn will explain how wood products companies can use the WCA’s Woodworking Skill Standards and Passport credentialing program to train and retain employees. 
 Molzahn, who is director of the cabinetmaking and millwork program at Wisconsin's Madison Area Technical College, is a board officer of the Woodwork Career Alliance and chairs its Education Committee, which helps advance woodworking education and develop curricula at high schools and colleges throughout North America. 
Educators at the EBC address the workforce pipeline (from left): John Stearns, The MiLL; Jeff Wasserman, Seattle Central College; and Thomas Allott, manager of Stiles University. 
Later during the EBC program, Molzahn will moderate a panel of educators, including Jeff Wasserman, instructor at the Wood Technology program at Seattle Central College, and John Stearns, lead instructor in Colorado Springs-based The MiLL- the acronym for the newly-opened national Manufacturing Industry Learning Lab. 
Thomas Allott will deliver a dinner presentation on April 15 - "Generational Differences in Workers."  Allott, who is Manager, Stiles University, an accredited university within the manufacturing industry. Thomas and his team have helped to educate the over 40,000 individuals who have gone through Stiles University’s programs over the last 28 years. In his presentation, Thomas will be discussing the generational changes within the manufacturing workforce, while providing apporaches used by successful corporations to address these transformational challenges. 
The 2019 EBC, running April 14-16 at the San Jose Marriott, provides strategic and practical information that addresses manufacturing challenges, and a forum for discovery. EBC helps executives anticipate business opportunities and beat the challenges that lie ahead and will ignite and inspire business leaders to create change when they return home.


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