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Last week, dozens of HR leaders from around Victoria joined us for our first Engagement Excellence Live in Melbourne. Surrounded by 9 metre high windows of The Metropolis and a crowd of passionate and curious HR Changemakers from around the state, our speakers took the stage to share the strategies they have used to inspire and drive company growth.

Attendees heard from:

  • Merril Hotchkin, Head of People and Business Improvement, Metricon
  • Sandra Arena, General Manager, Cube Networks
  • Mark Puncher, CEO at Employer Branding Australia
  • Kylie Green, Global SVP Consulting, Reward Gateway

Here are six stand-out moments that had the audience hooked:


1. When people started imagining where their team members fell on the different Quadrant of Employee Engagement

The audience took plenty of notes (and photos!) when Kylie Green shared about how HR Changemakers take the time to understand what employees need to thrive at work, and part of that means knowing where they all on the Employee Engagement Quadrant:


It was great to see people taking photos, and even better when she shared insights about how companies like Flight Centre, Peoplecare and Spotify have mobilised people and transformed even the strongest Detractors and Stayers into true Ambassadors.


2. Merril’s very real and relatable approach to Employee Engagement

The best leaders know how to have the right conversations and ask the difficult questions. For many organisations, employee engagement is a purely tick-box or commercial exercise, and Merril encouraged us all to consider what was truly driving our efforts and investment.


Merril was clear about the importance of authenticity when it came to solidifying Metricon’s employee engagement strategy and creating an environment where people truly love where they work.


3. When Mark made everyone laugh about employer branding

Mark's funny, irreverent and real approach to employer branding had us all hooked, and at the same time got us asking whether what we say about our company is really what we mean: 


Like Merril, Mark wasn’t afraid to be real and again spoke about the importance of authenticity when it comes to truly connecting with and engaging our employees and delivering on the our employer brand promise: 


4. ...And that time when Mark made everyone cry 

Ok, not everyone. But he did talk about the power of internal stories and I did see a number of people very touched when he played this beautiful video that also demonstrates the power of recognising employees for the amazing impact they make everyday:

5. Sandra’s team talking about what they love about Cube Networks

Speaking of the power of stories, Sandra shared two videos demonstrating what Cube Networks employees love about working there. She spoke about the importance of cultivating authentic relationships, growing the right people in the right roles, and prioritising clarity in both business direction and individual impact.


At Reward Gateway, we often talk about the employee engagement journey. Engagement is never “done” because our businesses and our people are constantly evolving. It was great seeing Sandra’s use a “trek” to demonstrate what her team is continuing to learn and achieve together.


6. Seeing the enthusiasm of HR leaders connect with each other, as well as our speakers

One of my favourite things about the Engagement Excellence Live event series is being able to provide the HR community a space and opportunity to learn together and share ideas and tools. This was the first event of this kind in Melbourne, but given the enthusiasm and response from all who attended, it certainly won’t be our last!


What were your stand-out moments from EnExLive Melbourne? I’d love to hear from you! 

Gemma Matthewman

A Brit living down under who is passionate about travel, food and all things Marketing. What really makes Gemma tick is experimenting with new ways to connect the community of HR Changemakers and educate people about our mission to make the world a better place to work.

Head of Australia Growth Marketing

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