How To Best Position Yourself To Employers

EPISODE 26|How To Best Position Yourself To Employers

Finding a new job can be a full time job itself. But in today's podcast, we help narrow down what you can specifically do to be more appealing to an employer.

Today we are joined by Tracy Judge, Founder and Chief Connector at Soundings Connect, and Matt Syme, Lead Corporate Recruiter at Cvent to discuss how to enhance your skills and beef up your resume. Matt and Tracy share what employers are looking for in a candidate and share tips such as how best to position your LinkedIn account as well as how to "brand" yourself.

Now is the best time to brush up on skills and build new ones such as being certified in Cvent. Cvent is offering certification exams at no charge until May 31st. Anyone can certify in any solution in just a few steps. Check out cvent.com/certification to learn more and see how you can receive free training as well!

Guest

  • Tracy Judge, Founder and Chief Connector, Soundings Connect
  • Matt Syme, Lead Corporate Recruiter, Cvent

Hosts

  • Brooke Gracey, Senior Manager, Demand Generation, Cvent
  • Cody Liskn, Team Lead, Event Quarterback Team, Cvent

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Transcript

Brooke Gracey
Tracy and Matt, thank you guys so much for joining us today.

Tracy Judge
Thanks for having us, Brooke.

Brooke Gracey
Yeah, let's jump in and say, Tracy, how about we go first with you a little bit of background on how and why you started soundings connect and I'm super curious where that name came from to

Tracy Judge
Sure, yeah. So how I started soundings connect my experiences in third party meeting management. I was on the agency side for most of my career. And I did pretty much every position from onsite operations to meeting planning hotel buying and then went into sales and account management.
And what I realized during my time was that our industry was changing a lot. And there's many factors to that a big one of it being technology. And what used to be proprietary systems that larger agencies had we now all had access to So that changed a lot of customers wanting to own their own data and we were also in a really good economy where people were hiring on employees. So, it changed you know how agencies could and were supporting their customers. One of the things that I realized, though, is that We, you know, when you are a customer working with an agency and at the pace, business is moving now is sometimes hard on the agency side to keep up with it so For example, I had a customer and the planner That was assigned to her wasn't. She's like, she's just not getting it. She's not getting it. And I finally talked to her and said, you know, what is the situation and I asked her how many marketing meetings do you sit in a week. And she told me you know five. I said, Okay, how many does she and then she understood it. And what I realized was because we're all moving so fast That you know agencies are great. And there is a time and place for them. But a lot of times what the customer needs is someone that can just plugin and run with them.
So I realized there was a space for this in the meetings and events business at the same time I was in grad school and doing a lot of research on the gig economy and how in the freelance economy and how creative industries like tech and Creative Services We're leveraging freelancers Not just to save money and handle the peaks right it was because they can plug in people that are skilled in a certain area and those freelancers help them innovate. So that's when I made the decision to leave my job and start soundings connect

Brooke Gracey
Oh my gosh, that's a really cool journey he really kind of saw that needs and jumped right in there. It's almost liked your translator between the idea and the execution of it potentially

Tracy Judge
Yeah, and soundings connect your question about that where the name came from. Is that sounding are really about, you know, digging in deeper right and going below the surface and understanding the situation or people better before you make a decision of how to move forward.
And that's what I really focus on in settings at soundings Connect is understanding our clients really well and understanding our freelancers and not just their expertise. We all know in the events business. There's, there's a lot of big personalities and we're not. You're not for everyone. Right. So, what I tried to do is focus not only inexperienced but their strengths and the personality traits, so I can match them with clients that they'll not only have the experience to serve. But also, they'll mesh well together. So, it's about diving in deeper and then connecting the people

Brooke Gracey
Very cool. I can't wait to hear more about this. But first, Matt fellow Cventer bleed blue Am I right? Tell us a little bit about your background and how you ended up At Cvent

Matt Syme
Yeah. Thanks for having me, guys, and I appreciate a chance to talk about this. Yes. So, I've been doing corporate recruiting for about nine years now and I joined Cvent about four and a half years ago. I'll be honest, it was the easiest transition. I've ever had any job. And I think what I recognize is that for the first time recruiting was something I could do Just by selling a company that I love and being able to talk about an organization that I was all about. And oh, by the way, got a paycheck with it so It was, it was fun to be part of them too
I think one of the reasons why I love it so much. It's just you know events and meetings have always been wild to me and to be able to get to that escape and have that human connection come together, something that I've always been very excited about. The fact that I got to come in and work for an organization that is the industry leader in That's wild and to be part of that in building the organization and building that out to change the industry for our customers is, it's absolutely fantastic. And so, I feel like I get to work with the best client ever. And it doesn't go away. So, it would like Tracy was talking about, you know, the matching up the customer to the candidate. They're my end. I've got to represent the right customer as always, and it's something that I absolutely enjoy

Cody Liskh
so I just want to talk about right now, connecting people to work and Tracy, I talked to you earlier about how, you know, the concern right now is how companies and their employees can begin shifting the online events effectively. When you know all, they've done up until this point is just live events, you told me about a couple of pivots or two pivots. Can you talk to us about that and how you use that to help address this problem?

Tracy Judge
Yeah, sure. Then, the first pivot. I'm not sure if I would, I would call it a pivot necessarily was when this first When COVID first happened I have a network of freelancers and really quick overnight work was gone. So, I wasn't able to offer them the value of work. So, we quickly put together the reschedule and revive the webinar series. And it was really based on the idea that freelancers Are going to be home and they're not working for an organization's and it was creating this community for them to plug into while we also could give them some you know tools to help grow their careers coming out of this and what I didn't realize when I did that it was actually teaching my team as well, how to run virtual events And giving us the understanding of how to do it and what competencies are needed and through that journey, what we realized was so many of the strengths and skills that the event planners have to do it live. It's all the same.
It's the same skills when you're doing virtual events. Your hand holding speakers in the same way, you're under the same amount of stress as when you're going live. You have to have that sense of urgency, a lot of them, a lot of the strengths aligned so it was just figuring out how do we translate the strengths of the people that we already have and provide them with a platform and opportunities to learn it virtually

Brooke Gracey
Yeah, I was actually having a conversation the other day with someone of the managers here Cvent. We were talking about You know, we've taken some of our events virtual to and it's kind of like, well, what are the planners, what is their role in this. And I'm like, you guys have no idea How much you need an event producer when you're doing a virtual event and you have like no idea. It's almost more like work to produce something like that and Not to mention the technology or event Technologist. I mean it's, there's a clear role for people, even when they're sitting at home, and we're not doing events face to face.

Tracy Judge
Yeah and we for somethings connect how we work. You know, each person's unique and if you look on my website We have personas for different types of positions and it's really just to give people an idea of what types of things freelancers can do for them. Right. And we see in with virtual events. Sometimes it emerges of all different you know skill sets from those positions. Which has been you know that part of it has been really interesting for us and what we started doing Was talking to our customers about the type of support that they need it and where you know where they felt their gaps were. And initially, you know, you think about this I say the first step was, we have freelancers that have done virtual events that were skilled in this already. So, we surveyed our people.
Are freelancers and said, Hey, who actually has this experience. And we had a lot of qualifiers to make sure that they really did. So, we started with a pool of people that had it. So that way we can offer it to customers. And then the next. Like I said, was looking at who's strengths align with what needs to happen, but You know, a lot of meeting planners and rightfully so, internal Like they want to learn the platforms and their jobs are changing a lot, they're shifting and yet for job security. You don't want to outsource the whole thing you want to learn it But we are able to help provide people freelancers to help support meeting planners on that journey where they're helping teach them and guide them and you know translating between the tech company And the meeting planner, what is happening and helping them grow for the future and then additionally, we have the opportunity with technology companies are growing so fast in the event tech space That there's a lot of hands holding that needs to go on. I mean, it's the same thing. If you have different breakout rooms Live, you have different breakout rooms within the meet within the virtual event and you would have an onsite staff or meeting planner, they're managing the speakers, the same exact things happening. We're just translating it to this virtual world.

Brooke Gracey
All within this kind of technology. So now we have this like if the technology works the breakout doesn't happen, so I have to imagine there's there's a lot of skills that we're learning. We have that we didn't even know we had and Now more than ever, we want to let everybody know. I mean, we know that there's a lot of planners out there that Are potentially out of work as well and are really trying to translate these skills to get employment even, even if it's short term.
So, you know, I know. Matt, you have a lot of experience with the recruiting side of things. And so, I wonder, is there any advice that you could give people or anything that you've seen maybe internal associates or external individuals do To help market themselves a little bit better. Maybe it's even liked a LinkedIn profile. I don't know. You're the expert.

Matt Syme
you're spot on. Absolutely. And I think one thing that is a great thing to really kind of grasping internalized is that LinkedIn is not just a place just apply for roles. It's a great way to use Your own network to use other individuals, you know, for your benefit. I think that's a great way just to even stand out. And I think a few things that I would, I would recommend folks, you know, look into is this using that network for their own benefit, they're Being able to use individuals that you're connected to, or be able to reach out and find other individuals that you connect to. It's a powerful tool to have folks that can work for you when you just can't get it across the finish line. And even groups like MPI or events Industry Council being able to join onboard there and get to know individuals that might have connections that can help you get to where you need to go is a great help. And it goes a long way.
And the advice I'd give early on is for individuals to go and look into their own network. You see what they can find see who they can get connected to but if folks aren't confident with their connections or their tactic with are being will do that. I would say Start building that that that network that you have and reaching out to folks that might be old coworkers or old colleagues that you might have or the connections that you might have worked within you've completely forgotten about because you'll never know who's actually going to help in the end and get you where you need to go.
I think some tools that we can give individuals to even help stand up further specifically with let's just say using a LinkedIn profile. It's really just kind of look into at enhancing the details that you have at least one your own personal page there to you. As much as you know, the brand of Cvent is one I personally believe that every individual has their own brand and LinkedIn is a great way for you to really kind of customize that individualized that as much as you can. I would say when looking at just kind of someone's patrons, look at the jobs that they've had. I would say enhancing the details of each role Is absolutely the way to go. And the more the better. And it shows what you've done what you have been able to accomplish it really goes a long way.
I think using the benefit of a bulletin can really kind of help emphasize what you have done what you were able to work on. And in fact, nowadays, you can even add in External links and URLs to each job that you have That's, um, that's really cool. Now they can add-in. It's like a very digital resume, you can have where you can't have to save links or interactive videos on your resume. It's on paper LinkedIn is a great way to do that and

Brooke Gracey
I was gonna ask you about that Matt because that's one of the things that I love to do on my LinkedIn is within each job, you can kind of highlight some of the projects that you've worked on And link them out. And so, people can really see your body of work without, you know, having to go dig for it. It's a really cool way to just, you know, highlight those projects you're really proud of.

Matt Syme
Yeah, absolutely. And one thing on that too. And I always tell folks is don't be afraid to use numbers to tell the story. Because as much as you want to add in quality of, hey, I did this or that, from a qualitative standpoint Bottom line is that showing metrics and numbers go a long way. You know, if for event planners are you talking about what their budget was how many events they were doing on a regular basis. That helps other organizations recognize the compare and contrast in Data points on okay if they've had to spend just a new X Men thousand dollars that lines up to, well, we're probably going to be looking at, let's say post-pandemic. This might work out for us and we can easily dive into conversations with each candidate about what we're trying to accomplish with it. So, I think using specific numbers goes a long way. So, don't be afraid to use specific data points.

Tracy Judge
I agree with that piece of it. And I think that piece is sometimes hard for event professionals because you know our Event for professionals feel good at the end of the event because other people feel good. Right. And then we're moving on to the next one. So, a lot of times planners don't feel like they have the data that you need to show those things. So, it's, it's funny. We're talking about this. Our next webinar is actually on We have a copywriter. That's going to a persuasive writer that's speaking to our freelance network and talking to them about how they market themselves. And what we realized is that was sounding connect I didn't want to just send people resumes, because it wasn't speaking to the person. So, we're working on a new summary.
Profile sheet for each freelancer and it touches on so much of what you just said. Right. Part of it is, what are you what accomplishments. Are you proud of Well, those are things I want them to use data-driven results for right and show And show what they've actually accomplished, and then for the role they might be a meeting planner and they might be able to build websites. Right. But if they're applying for the meeting planning role that will be very specific to why they're good for that role. And then the key accomplishments that prove it as well. And this downtime, we have right now. Whether you are You know employed and you're still stuck at home you know I did on the weekends or you're a freelancer trying to learn how to market yourself You know persuasive writing and learning more about marketing and how to position yourself is one of the most valuable things you can do with your time.

Matt Syme
Absolutely. And I think another thing too that I definitely kind of push on books or kind of recommendation is to reach out to your network for recommendations. Yeah, I think a lot of folks are hesitant, they're like, well, should I wait for someone to just be so impressed with me that they're going to run the recommendation. That's great if everyone did that. It's just not the way the world works. And I think that being able to ask individuals that You've been working with or have an impact with to write a recommendation for you on your page goes a long way.
And I think one of the things too that I think makes some folks skittish sometimes is recognizing that no one is going to turn you down in these situations. And I think in this type of setup there know being able to recognize that courtesy of helping someone gets that next spot in their career That's just like one of those things. It's an unofficial courtesy everyone's going to give you no one's going to say no to giving the time and for someone writing the recommendation. It's seconds that you get to give, but it could go a long way in verifying someone's candidacy for the position, say, Look, I've been through this with them if you know In the case of planners, I saw what their execution was and your point, Tracy, you know folks were so pleased about this and excited about it. And that's hard to quantify, but That's something you can't really share in a resume, but a recommendation can do that. And that's something that goes a long way.

Tracy Judge
It's interesting. What you just said Matt because when we think about behavioral interviewing right and now still use behavioral interview questions with our freelancers because I get to know them personally. But when you're preparing for behavioral interview questions you want to think, what are the competencies of the job that they're going to be looking for.
And I think with recommendations, you want to think about it the same way where you want to ask people very specific for very specific feedback about you in their recommendations. So, you're touching on All of the different points that an employer is going to be looking for.

 Cody Liskh
Ooh, I like that. Tracy, when you guys are talking about beefing up your LinkedIn profile. That was the thing that came to my mind was getting some professional recommendations and it does go a long way. But what I've never done is really kind of, you know, Guide that that recommendation, a little bit and kind of, you know, indicate some of the strengths that you want to have listed as well. I think that's super great. So, your LinkedIn profiles beefed up everything is looking great. But where would you guys recommend people go if they need to find work, you know, whether that's temporary or permanent

Tracy Judge 
Yeah, so obviously anybody that's looking for work, you're welcome to come to me. soundings Connect is a network of freelancers, so we work to find customers that need freelance support, and right now we're working really hard to find. Find customers that need virtual event support. Right. So, our network is great for that. You know, for marketers there's other places to go as well as a creative circle. You know work is always good. If you're looking for something quick, it's not really relationship-based. So, it just depends what kind of work, you're looking for, they're Not what do you think about if full-time jobs at this point.

Matt Syme
You know, I think one thing that we're going to have to start getting behind a little bit further is the reception to fully remote opportunities. And I think there are a lot of individuals out there that have always been hesitant, say I could do something full-time remote I think on the back end of this that's going to change. And I think a lot of folks are going to be much more receptive to saying, hey, we've done this for Months now have seen high performers completely remote, you know, let's have a reception to this. So, My advice from, say, the near the individual looking for a new position. Don't be afraid to look outside of your area, you know, and I would say, you know, as opposed to just kind of, you know, spreading across you know nationwide. You start with an area that you know; start with an area that you fundamentally have some type of connection to. I promise it'll be a little fun on looking at for some physicians there and say, Hey, you know, I've been to Chicago, a few times I've always had great times Let's just see what happens. There are remote opportunities that we can look into. I think just the on the back end of these employers for full-time opportunities are going to be working. Yeah, to even be open to that possibility, where they never had before.

Tracy Judge
And it. Yeah That's it's so true. And that's the thing with, you know, with freelancers in with freelancers being remote If our customer doesn't need them in a certain area for sure. I always recommend that they look virtually Because you're your candidate pool is getting bigger; you have a better chance at getting top talent and the right talent. If you're able to allow them to work virtually And to your point, we've all gotten really comfortable now working virtually because we haven't had a choice. One of the things we used to, we always have to hire freelancers about learn project management tools like a cello or an Asana and learn communication tools like Slack or teams. There's free versions of all of them just get in there. If you're not already using them play and play around with it and learn the language of those tools. Because those are the tools that are going to be imperative, as we go more virtual and for freelancers that want to work remotely. Yeah.

Matt Syme
And I think, to your point there too. You know, it goes back to the pivot that you mentioned, you know, this is just, it's the way the industry is moving and Having folks on their own timeframe, maybe look at new a new skill set, or, you know, a new tool is going to go a long way.
And by the way, you can add it back to that LinkedIn profile or back to your resume now and say, hey, I've learned this during this period, and it could help just enhance this virtual experience this remote experience that's definitely a tip I would give

Brooke Gracey
Would you say it would be a good time to get Cvent certified

Matt Syme
I can't think of a better time

Tracy Judge
you know, When I interview freelancers, or one of the things they talked to talk about is their technical experience and what platforms they have experienced with And one of the things they always say, and I always ask about Cvent. And one of the things they say is, well, we don't have access to the platform, we've only used it if it was our clients and we can't learn on it.
So it's a conversation I've been having with the team at Cvent for a while and when this happened I called our friends at Cvent and said, Hey, I have freelancers that need to learn this and freelancers, are going to be needed coming out of this. And your team was amazing right away. I said, Would you do a webinar for me and they said yes, we'll, we'll do a webinar for you will give them access to our platform and will give you complimentary certifications, which I know you're doing for everyone Now, which is super amazing

Brooke Gracey
Yeah, yeah, it's such a good opportunity to Get that new skill set, because I have to imagine when we come out the other end, or even during this time. There's all kinds of new like jobs and opportunities and skill sets that people are looking for. What are you seeing out there for planners and marketers? Maybe, Matt, you can help answer that, like, what are they looking for in a candidate.

Matt Syme
Yeah, I think looking at that. That adaptability to being able to embrace technology is huge. Whether it is a tool like WebEx or zoom and being able to maximize and say, I've Been doing events at a certain level, you know, the, you know, with the capacity that it has that's going to go a long way than ever has before and I think that's just the way that it's going to push even further, as we go forward.

Tracy Judge
Then, the back end of technologies. Right. It's that all technologies are different, but there's a certain language to it. And I have found that the more technologies I dive in and learn the more I'm able to help navigate right so I learned Salesforce really well. I know what that can do so then when I'm working in Zoho I know like somebody tells me something can't happen. I say, No, that doesn't make sense that can happen. Or because I knew you know Salesforce really well When I was building out SMM programs and Cvent just understanding the tech language. I could apply that to this Cvent build. So, you know, knowledge will never be taken away from you. So, it's a great thing to learn right now During this time, but even if you're picking one platform like a Cvent to learn really well. It doesn't mean that's just helping you be good at building Cvent
It's helping you broadly understand the technology and that's what people need like I am looking for people right now for physicians to support virtual events, but I'm looking for their aptitude for technology. Not that they have experienced with that platform.

Brooke Gracey
That's a really, really interesting.

Cody Liskh
yeah, I thought that's a really good point. Like, I mean, you might you may not find that expert on that exact platform. But if they're going to be a potential and all technology, then yeah, they can adapt, for sure. I hope all of our listeners are taking all this advice to mean beef up your LinkedIn profile, you know, learn project management software, etc.
But I guess my question is what can our listeners do to set them up to set themselves apart when they're getting hired like I want to know, are there certain skills that planners are really honing in on right now. Or, you know, what are they getting trained on to set themselves apart and make themselves more marketable when they're finding a new job.

Tracy Judge
So I'm a sucker for people that love education and that are self-starters. So I would say there's right now Anybody that's really using this time to learn and grow and can speak to what they've done during this Downtime and not only shows that they are a life learner and will continue to grow but It, it also shows how dedicated they are to themselves and their career as well. And when you're looking for candidates. If you want people that are self-drivers and especially when we talk about working in a virtual world If you're working in a virtual position you want to know that somebody is a self-starter.

Matt Syme
Yeah, I think you're spot on with that. And I think to even double down on that. Sometimes it is a full-time job just finding a new job. There’s no question about it. It puts a lot of effort into it and I would agree with you, Tracy folks that go above and beyond to show initiative to show that self-starting mentality is huge. And I think what I recommend folks to and this goes back to a parallel thing I said with LinkedIn user network. It doesn't have to be on LinkedIn. But use your own professional work networks work it for your favorite so You know if you're able to take those skills that you've just recently learned add them into a resume. I don't want to what your experience is and then go find one to that potential position or another that really does excite you Not only apply for that. Cvent loves using the power of human connection. Use it to a different level and the setup you know use your own connections to get you set up there. Just because let's just say for instance. And you mentioned Salesforce has an opportunity and there's thousands of folks that are applying for it. If you are able to find some type of connection that used to work, there are still works. There was no someone else that works there.
And be able to kind of create that human side of it and get connected with someone that can actually have a conversation about it. You've already stood out you've already put yourself in a position that is above the 999 other folks that that apply for it. So, it goes back to what you mentioned Tracy, is that self-starter mentality in the job search

Tracy Judge
Well, and also Matt with that. I think that for me, you know, a lot of people say there's a lot of technologies out there that match freelancers right And people always question me, why aren't you a technology platform Tracy, and I said because that's not where my value is. My value is I'm Tech-enabled, but my value is in connecting people and why customers want to work with me is because I've already done all of that vetting process for them. Right. Like I've already understood the customer. I know my freelancers, boom, boom. I'm presenting them with three candidates that I think would be good for the freelance position.
And it is the same right as when you are leveraging your own networks and you are getting connected through people When you get a recommendation and you're trying to hire someone, it comes through a recommendation through a valuable source. You're like, great. Somebody already did a lot of work for me. Right. And you're left with about 20% of the work to do instead of, instead of 100

Brooke Gracey
totally makes sense. I feel like people get nervous reaching out to people and to ask for help, but Once you've done it a few times. It gets easier. You know, we're all out here just wanting to help each other anyway. So, to your point, Matt, like reach out to those contacts. If They're at the company that you're applying for. Even if you haven't talked to my person at a little while, like still just, you know, put yourself out there. This is how you're going to find that next great gig. Yeah.

Matt Syme
Well, the bottom line, too, is I mean take for employers stands out as well. you know I can't speak for all companies for Cvent internally we absolutely love referrals. And I think historically, it's higher than 40% of our hires come from referrals. So, we love being able to get our own employee base to work for our favor and get connected with folks.
And it tells a story already you know those individuals that you get connected with through and another employee to refer it tells a story about them already. And that goes a long way. And it just makes the process so much more seasons across the board.

Brooke Gracey
Yeah, as you can almost like see your resume being pulled out from a stack of resumes is when you have that kind of personal referral.

Matt Syme
They call that the black hole. Sometimes we're gonna get sucked in and it doesn't go anywhere.

Brooke Gracey
I'm going to switch gears a little bit here because in our previous conversations with you, Tracy, you mentioned a couple of cool things that you're doing at soundings connect. I think our audience would be really curious to hear more, um, the first thing I wanted to ask you about is the COVID response hotline that you have. Can you tell us a little bit more about that and what that means to potentially people who are listening?

Tracy Judge
Yeah, sure. So, I'm part of an initiative called hospitality and events fight back. And we formed it right when this whole crisis happened. My partner is Rachel's boss from Susan G. Cities and we are friends, and she is one of the most brilliant minds. I've, I've ever worked with. And we were having a conversation about, you know, about what was happening. And she was really into the data of COVID so, we had this idea. Well, what if we could use hotels to treat code patients and use the event industry to flip the hotels into what they need it to be. So, it started with that concept in this really big idea. And what we realized is that We had the opportunity to expand it and not just talk about one or two hotel convergence but connect people through the industry and it was really based on finding people's work And helping to stimulate the events community during this time.
So, actually. So, we created a platform to do this and connect people and what ended up happening is other initiatives started popping up in our industry as well. And our we're It's very important for us as an industry to be united right as one voice and you don't want to have competing initiatives, because it's just noise and also we don't have all the time in the world. So, we're actually announcing today, which is super, super exciting. We partnered with live for life who George P. Johnson is one of the companies that is running that initiative and they were already doing the piece that we were doing as far as the connections.
So they're going to focus on those connections and now our team is really focused on problem-solving and solutions and innovation and how can we help solve some of the challenges we're going to have in the meetings and events industry and how can we create new products or services that will

Tracy Judge
You know, maybe replace some of the products and services that aren't relevant anymore moving forward. So, and also, we're focused on getting Cross-industry support. So instead of us staying siloed in hospitality and events. It's more important than ever now for us to work with different industries to solve some of these really complex challenges. But you know we are as industry connectors. That's what we do. We bring people together from all industries All businesses right to come together to solve problems to get better to drive business results to drive world change. So, in essence, we're doing again we're doing what we always do, but We're, we're doing it in a different way. So, we're launching a virtual Hackathon if It goes live today the registration and Cvent have been one of our partners from the very beginning of this initiative supported us the whole way. And additionally, that will be launching this Cvent registration site for anybody that's interested to apply to be a hacker and join one of these teams.

Brooke Gracey
That's so cool. We'll have to put the link in the description of this podcast for anybody. Tracy, you were just like, Goals when it comes to what everyone should be doing during our downtime here. Well, while I'm over there watching like trashy TV, you're making such a great difference in the world. And I just think it's so cool. The way that you've rallied around this industry and really trying to make a difference really inspirational.

Tracy Judge
Thank you. This is, this is the time that we all come together. Right. Which is funny Because we can't be to get there, but we all need each other right now. And we also need a community. We need a community. So, having these initiatives and just the ability. I've networked more in the last two months, right, working on these initiatives Than I probably did in the last year and you have the opportunity right now to work with people with different piece parts of the industry and partner on projects that you want it usually have the opportunity to. So, I really encourage everybody to do it and get and get involved in something different. During this time, because the opportunities are there.

Brooke Gracey
we're such a community. Right. And we really like to come together and help when we can. And it's such a unique skill set that I think we've Like you've said, you know, we've been able to leverage and really cool ways to give back.

Cody Liskh
Brooke on that note, I think it's time for our really difficult question that we have the Hardest most challenging question you're going to hear today.This is for both Tracy and Matt if both of you had to leave our event professionals or listeners with one takeaway or piece of advice with how to get help During this time, what would that be?

Matt Syme
I would say being adaptable. I think the way that the events business in the industry is going, it's just it's changing rapidly through this and I think Looking at where just virtual events we're ultimately going to get to even prior to, you know, to a pandemic, we were going to get there. We're online virtual events. We're going to be something of the future. But the bottom line is we celebrated this probably 100-fold. And I think we're at a spot right now we're getting behind that is really important and I think being adaptable on what type of role within that industry that you might want to explore is really helpful.
As Tracy mentioned, you know, looking at a new skill set, being able to adapt your own background with it and go a long way. Well, I'll preface it this way and not to ramble too much. But now, how, how many family relatives that we all have no say six months ago refused to get on a FaceTime or Call with you. Now, that's all they'll do we just because we're forced and backed into that in a similar way. I think a lot of the events industry is going to have to get forced to get into that and to embrace them. So, getting ahead of the curve as much as you can learn new skill sets learning as you mentioned, Tracy to embrace that pivot that's adaptability and that's going to go a long way.

Tracy Judge
Yeah, I agree, adaptability is huge and it's also, we don't. I mean this shocked us right we have no idea what the future holds for us. But as long as you're adaptable, you're going to keep you know you're going to keep figuring out and evolving and You know, I think it how to get help. Right now, I would say one of the biggest things we've learned is to ask for help.
And during this time, we've all experienced vulnerabilities that we may never have experienced in our lifetime, and we are all very vulnerable right now. And because of that, it is a time when you know you don't need to be perfect. You can try things you can fail. You can raise your hand and say you don't understand something or know how to do something, or You know you are sad today because you've been stuck in your house for weeks. Like, it's okay. And I think it's something coming out of this that we all can continue to take with us. If you need help, ask. There's people that that will assist you. 

Cody Liskh
Good solid advice. Yeah, this has been such a cool conversation Tracy before we let you go, is there anything else that you want to promote with our listeners will definitely put the link to the hackathon here, but is there anything additional

Tracy Judge
You know, if you are, if you are a freelancer looking for work or you are, you've been displaced from your position, please feel free to come To the soundings connect website you can apply to be part of our network. We're doing a lot of education-wise and creating a community for anybody that needs it right now. So, we would love for you to be part of that. And then our virtual Hackathon again launches today and we're looking for people that want to be hackers and also want to be mentors for it. So, you're able to apply online with that.

Cody Liskh
Well, thanks again, Tracy and Matt. It was so great to have you guys here. Thank you for joining today's very special edition videocast of how great events happen.