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Workplace Superheroes: Great Managers Are Your Secret Weapon to Loyal, Engaged Employees

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Emily Goodson
CultureSmart, Founder and CEO

Emily Goodson is a Talent & People consultant who focuses on helping startups to scale smart and save money.

After a decade of work in talent and people leadership, Emily founded CultureSmart to help companies scale HR infrastructure in a way that allows the greatest agility while also creating a “people first” mentality. CultureSmart partners with companies on a monthly basis to amplify executive leaders through tailored HR advising and support.

Prior to founding CultureSmart, Emily led the Talent & People function for various high-growth startups, ranging from 15 to over 200 employees, and also worked in campus recruiting for Deloitte Consulting. She has achieved coaching certifications through the Center for Creative Leadership and the Agile Coaching Institute, as well as an HR certification through the Human Resources Certification Institute. Emily's thought leadership has recently been featured in HR Daily Advisor and on Monster.com.

Jess Szmajda
Axios, CTO

Jess is the CTO at Axios, where she leads engineers in the invention and implementation of technology for Axios products. Jess is also the first female CTO of a major media company, and was voted Technical.ly DC’s CTO of the year in 2019.

Jess has over 20 years of experience in tech; from IT support, operations, development, to leadership. She has a strong track record of building high-performance enterprise-class solutions. Prior to Axios, Jess was the CTO at Optoro, where she built systems that revolutionized how retailers handle returns and grew the team from 8 to 250 people.

Jess is a leader in the DC tech community and has organized several meetup groups in the DC area. She's the creator of the DC Tech Slack and Joy of Programming Meetup, and continues to add to the community by mentoring individuals and contributing to open source.

Johnny Ray Austin
Till, Chief Technology Officer

Johnny is an experienced hands-on engineering executive focused on shipping world-class products. He has built and led high-performing, globally-distributed engineering teams and is a strong advocate for engineering operational excellence. Johnny is also an international public speaker - speaking on engineering leadership, system design, and the JavaScript programming language.

He sits on the board of directors for Byte Back - an organization providing pathways to inclusive tech training that leads to living-wage careers. He's currently the Chief Technology Officer for Till. Till's mission is to provide powerful financial tools to help renters pay, stay, and thrive in their homes.

Chelsea Raab
FiscalNote, Senior Director, Enterprise Business Development

Chelsea is currently a Senior Director at FiscalNote, where she leads new logo and account expansion sales for FiscalNote's Enterprise sales team.

Amira El-Gawly
Manifesta and St. Plant, Founder + CEO

Amira El-Gawly is an entrepreneur, coach and writer with over 15 years

guiding executives and brands to design elevated and impactful experiences,

both internal and external, that are authentically aligned to their company's

mission and values. El-Gawly is the founder and CEO of Manifesta, a

leadership and workplace culture consultancy with a focus on team

alignment, wellbeing and performance. She speaks and coaches on a number

of topics, and is most known for her strategies on strengths-based leadership

and compassion at work. El-Gawly is also the founder of St. Plant, a business

designed to reconnect humans with nature through meaningful products and

experiences. Her favorite plant’s name is Dolly.


The research is clear: According to Gallup, only one in 10 people possess the natural talent to manage. But managing others is something that almost every leader is expected to do. Join us for this interactive session to learn the ways you can better equip your managers to succeed in their roles, build engaged teams, and grow both high-performance and business impact.

  1. Learn the critical components and superpowers behind managing effectively
  2. Get your most pressing questions answered by a management-training expert
  3. Leave with a plan to better support your managers (and yourself)