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01 Jul 2020

4 questions to define 2020 (Part 3)

5 rock star speakers answer 4 questions

Back by popular demand. Five more speakers from our stellar line-up for the HR + L&D Virtual Innovation & Tech Fest give us their take on the meaning of life, workplace utopia and the ultimate examples of reinvention.


Do you have a philosophy or guiding principle that you apply to life/work?

Jason Averbook: Never give up and never take no for an answer - the reason "no" happens is usually a lack of understanding versus a lack of interest and desire.

Taryn Marie Stejskal: Love everyone and tell the truth.

Janine Garner: Be a flamingo in a flock of pigeons and remember everything you do impacts someone or something – so make it matter.

David Shontz: Always begin with the end in mind, and make sure that end increases the value proposition.

Daniel Murray:  Understanding people is the most important and most challenging part of any business - this makes empathy a critical business and leadership skill.

If you could rule the world for a day, what's one thing you would change about the workplace?

Jason Averbook: Realisation that static strategy is dead and cyclical annualised processes and policies will not work into the future.

Taryn Marie Stejskal:  I would eradicate the double standard for women in the workplace wherein women are devalued for being “emotional”, strong, and ambitious. I’d love to see these qualities valued in women’s leadership as much as they are lauded for men.

Janine Garner: Less meetings and more opportunities to think and percolate.

David Shontz: Minimising political barriers to true employee empowerment.

Daniel Murray: No manager can lead people until they develop strong emotional intelligence.


Want to hear what these 5 thinkers (and 40+ more) have to say on the great workplace re-set of 2020 and beyond?



Describe 2020 so far using a movie or song title.

Jason Averbook: A Beautiful Life (with a few twists and turns)

Taryn Marie Stejskal: All Time Low by Jon Bellion – just kidding! Here Comes the Sun by George Harrison because no matter what is happening, the sun always rising, reminding us that all of this is happening for us and better days are head!

Janine Garner: I Want to Break Free by Queen

David Shontz: Apocalypse Now

Daniel Murray: The Gods Must Be Crazy!


An example of reinvention that I love is:

Jason Averbook: Reinvention of how we get answers to questions outside of work. As someone who grew up with encyclopedias, we have reinvented knowledge and action tremendously in a short period of time.

Taryn Marie Stejskal: I love being reminded that it is never too late to discover and/or live our dreams. For me, reinvention isn’t a once and for all metamorphosis, but a continual process over time of listening to the voice within and becoming the people we are meant to become. At age 40 Stan Lee had just published his first comic book, Vera Wang had just started in fashion, Samuel L. Jackson hadn’t starred in a movie yet, and Julia Child was still working in advertising. It’s never too late to start or start again.

Janine Garner: The pizza maker in the US making facemasks during COVID 19.

David Shontz: Solar powered landscape lighting

Daniel Murray: Distilleries making hand sanitizer


Join the celebration of leadership and tech for FREE by registering for the HR + L&D VIRTUAL Innovation & Tech Fest, 7-8 July 2020.



BONUS: Find out what the other HR and L&D Virtual Innovation and Tech Fest speakers answered for these 4 questions here and here.


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