Lori Ellis

3 expert coaches gear up for retail-only session at Bedding Conference | Sheila Long O’Mara

Calling all retailers.

As most of you are aware, we’re on the downhill slide to our 19th annual Bedding Conference in Hilton Head, S.C., and our team has put together a team of experts to advise and counsel retailers on three strategic areas.

Taking a page out of our 2023 Leadership Conference in Florida, we have created an exclusive session that gives retailers access to experts in the field of employee recruitment and retention; cybersecurity; and accounting in challenging times. The 90-minute session, set for May 16 from 9:15 a.m. until 10:45 a.m., will give our retail attendees exclusive access to three experts in topics that matter.

Here’s a sneak peak at our three coaches and what they have in store for our retail attendees.

1 Leading recruitment tips from a headhunter

Lori Ellis

We hear from our retail friends — and manufacturers — how challenging it is to find strong job applicants and to hold onto them once they are hired. With unemployment in the U.S. hovering just under 4%, recruiting employees to fill open positions is a challenge. Keep in mind that 5% is considered full employment.

Lori Ellis, furnishings and retail practice leader for Atlanta-based executive search firm Pinnacle Search Partners, will lead a discussion on hiring strategies to uncover the best talent and tips on how to hold on to them. In addition to her expertise in recruitment, Ellis has extensive experience in retail with a number of executive positions on her resume with companies such as Century 21, J. Jill, Sleepy’s and DXL.

2 Retail accounting in challenging times from a CPA

Darlene Leonard
Darlene Leonard

Do you ever look at your balance sheet and wonder how everyone and everything is going to get paid? While not likely that bleak, the industry is stressed right now, and sometimes that pressure requires a different way of looking at the books.

Coach Darlene Leonard, partner with High Point-based Smith Leonard and a certified public accountant, will offer retailers tactics to help weather challenging times and considerations that may need to be taken into account. She has more than 30 years of experience in working with clients in a variety of capacities, including evaluating options for a potential sale or other transaction.

3 How to prevent cyber attacks with a security expert

Aaron Warner
Aaron Warner

Hackers seem to be everywhere, and no company is immune from cyberattack. As long as those looking to steal information continue to be able to tap into private networks, the bad guys will continue clicking away to get into those networks. Nearly every day there’s news about a company that has had a security breach. Our industry isn’t immune.

Aaron Warner, founder and CEO of ProCircular, a data security company, is our coach on the world of cybersecurity. Warner’s background includes collaborations with the FBI, Homeland Security and other federal organizations, and he offers clients solutions in keeping their data and their customers’ data secure.

Three topics, three coaches and a wealth of information to take away for use in your retail business.

Be sure to register at our conference website — www.beddingconference.com — and join us in Hilton Head, May 14-16.

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