Members reconnect at Shake It Up! on the Gold Coast

The sunny Gold Coast and stunning Intercontinental Sanctuary Cove set the scene and tone for this year’s IAP2A ‘Shake it Up’ Conference held 23 – 25 October. A fantastic attendance of almost 300 delegates and members spent three days of networking, attending workshops, masterclasses and keynote sessions where 50 presenters shared their knowledge and experiences. A jam-packed program over three days, there were so many fantastic highlights for my first time at an IAP2A conference so I have selected just a few to share with you.

Day 1: Around 50 Young & Emerging Professionals (YEPs) enjoyed an evening of networking with their peers from around Australasia and meeting the IAP2A Board members in this social setting at the Veranda Bar, a BIG shout out to Glenn Pfluger from MPC Kinetic who hosted us for this event. We then moved to the Fountain Terrace to join all members for the Welcome Reception, a stunning aspect of the venue under the night sky where there were no speeches or formalities just the opportunity to mingle and get to know other members. Early to bed though, as we had a wedding to attend the next morning.

Day 2: BIG DAY starting with a Barefoot “Wedding breakfast” on the lawn with great 80’s & 90’s hits playing in the background, hosted by RPS, to celebrate the ‘marriage’ of RPS and Straight Talk. Overlooking the pool across the garden created a wonderful atmosphere where new friendships and connections were born, the brides looked stunning, the buffet breakfast was delicious and there was even a dance or two – great moves, Lucy! The official opening of our conference commenced with a Welcome to Country and Smoking Ceremony on the Marina Lawn; what an amazing way to start the day! Our Ambassadors Amanda Newbery, Leisa Prowse and Nicole Hunter were in charge of our icebreaker which consisted of Heads, Hearts, Hands and a flash mob dance to Taylor Swift’s “Shake it off”. The room went off, everyone had a little shake and were rewarded with an ‘I Love IAP2’ badge for our efforts (the badges were terrific and we have ordered a new batch for future events and trainings)! Then back to the serious stuff for the rest of the day where delegates had the chance to hear our keynote speakers and select areas of interest in the breakout sessions until our AGM (insert annual report link here) and then Core Values Awards dinner where finalists and winners had the opportunity to showcase their achievements and celebrate success. View the 2018 Core Values Awards Showcase booklet here. Congratulations!

Day 3: The Finale, started with an energetic discussion on the future, followed by many interesting breakout sessions throughout the day. Our local network groups across Australasia shared lunch together to discuss our networking plans for 2019. Watch this space! Lastly, a special thanks to the contributors for our Ideas Tree.

It was great to see you at the conference and have the opportunity to meet you personally. I encourage you to check out the Shake It Up! highlights.

Thank you to principle sponsor GHD, and all our other sponsors and exhibitors for adding to spirit of knowledge sharing at the conference.

Michelle Caruso, Member Relationship Manager, IAP2 Australasia