Cole to share how hustle, heart, grit, resilience, and empathy are key to decision-making, risk-taking, and culture-building
DUBLIN and FRAMINGHAM, Mass. – October 16, 2018 – Globoforce®,a leading provider of human applications, today announced business executive, Chief Operating Officer and president of FOCUS Brands North America, Kat Cole as a keynote speaker for its WorkHuman® 2019 conference, March 18-21, in Nashville, Tenn.
The annual WorkHuman conference, pioneered by Globoforce, is dedicated to helping educate, energize, and engage business and HR leaders to build a more human-focused work culture. The event has grown 500 percent in size since the inaugural event in 2015 and has featured some of the world’s most influential thought leaders and visionaries, including former First Lady of the United States Michelle Obama, #MeToo movement founder Tarana Burke, international human rights attorney Amal Clooney, journalist and lawyer Ronan Farrow, actors Salma Hayek Pinault, Ashley Judd, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Rob Lowe, and Michael J. Fox, and best-selling authors Susan Cain, Arianna Huffington, Shawn Achor, Adam Grant, Simon Sinek, and Brené Brown.
Cole will share her personal leadership lessons in hustle and heart, learned over the course of her career, from her beginnings as a restaurant hostess at 17 in Jacksonville, Fla., to her involvement in global humanitarian work, to her ascension to president of a multi-brand, multibillion-dollar brand company. Attendees will hear about Cole’s journey of becoming a leader at a young age, her experience assembling and accelerating agile teams, and leading through challenges of scaling multinational businesses while building workplace cultures where all employees have a voice.
“Leadership and humanity are at the heart of Kat’s story,” said Derek Irvine, senior vice president of strategy and consulting services at Globoforce. “A firm believer in applying her life lessons to achieve business success, Kat is a truly inspirational leader who regards trust and respect as the foundations of an organization. As WorkHuman continues to attract more and more business leaders from some of the most admired organizations in the world, we are thrilled to invite leaders like Kat who champion employees’ interests and put humanity first to propel businesses forward.”
Cole began her career at Hooters at 17 years-old, advancing to vice president at the age of 26 and serving as a member of the Hooters executive team that grew the franchise to 400 units in 28 countries. Cole then spent four years as President of Cinnabon, Inc. growing franchise units to 1,200 spanning 55 countries and expanding Cinnabon’s multi-channel retail products to 70, with 70,000 points of distribution. In 2013, Cinnabon surpassed $1 billion in annual branded product sales globally through all retail channels. She moved on to grow as the company grew and is now president and COO over all 7 of its brands.
“Throughout my career, I’ve followed a compass, not a road map, able to follow a true north while taking unexpected paths and creating opportunities along the journey,” said Cole. “At this stage of life and leadership, building cultures I’m proud of is an even greater focus and responsibility’ As I look to WorkHuman, I am excited to share what I have learned on my professional—and personal—journey with fellow leaders. I look forward to joining other leaders of the WorkHuman movement to continue the conversation about the power of a human workplace, a culture in which employees can thrive and businesses can succeed.”
With “Hustle and Heart: Lessons from Unexpected Places,” Cole joins influential business thinker Gary Hamel as a keynote speaker for WorkHuman 2019. WorkHuman 2019 speakers will share expertise and primary research on HR topics such as continuous performance development, social recognition, positive psychology, leadership, pay equity, workplace harassment, the employee experience, diversity, inclusion, and belonging, and building a great culture and workplace.
Pioneer of the WorkHuman movement, Globoforce makes work more human for millions of people and organizations worldwide. Today, Globoforce is the leading provider of human applications, including its award-winning Social Recognition solution. Through its WorkHuman Cloud suite of products, companies can strengthen employee performance and the connection between people and teams on a more positive, emotional level – in tune with how work gets done today. Founded in 1999, the company is headquartered in Framingham, Mass., and Dublin, Ireland.
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Senior Manager, Public Relations