2021 DG Symposium speaker Laura Denk: How trainers can be more convincing

One of the most popular presentations at the 2021 Dangerous Goods Symposium might be delivered by someone with no Dangerous Goods experience.

Meet Laura Denk, of eChoice Innovations—a Chicago-based firm that solves business challenges with innovative marketing programs.

When you’re talking to someone about what training they or their organization might need, you want them to be open minded and willing to hear your message,” she says. “I’m going to talk about a process that can help you get them there, and once you get the hang of it you can use it anywhere.”

Here’s a quick preview of Laura’s session: “Convince and Convert.”

Making the case for more hazmat training

Everyone in the Dangerous Goods supply chain knows that people need training. But it’s not always easy to agree on exactly who needs what kind of training.

There are many organizations who manufacture, transport or sell Dangerous Goods who view training as simply a box to check. They go with the bare minimum, recertifying their employees just often enough to pass a DOT inspection.

But there’s so much more to hazmat training than simply staying compliant! People who are better trained to be more competent at their specific roles save their companies money, because they make fewer errors and do their jobs more efficiently. They can even help grow the businesses by allowing their organizations to handle more different kinds of hazmat—and in greater scope—than they might otherwise take on.

Every DG trainer knows this. But their customers often need some convincing.

How DG trainers can “Convince and Convert”

Denk says, “Instead of coming at it for the sale, back up a little bit and become more persuasive.”

Here’s what she means: “There’s a tendency to want to close the gap in understanding between you and your customer. But we work with people to take a step back and widen that gap, allowing your customer the space to realize they need your services. If there are goals they’d like to reach, can you help them see how far they are from achieving those goals without the right kinds of training?

“If you have the right hook, and have told the right story in your messaging, then when it becomes more obvious that they don’t know everything, that there are these potential pitfalls they didn’t see, they will come to realize why they need your help.”

Want to hear how to do it? You’ll just have to attend her session at the DG Symposium!

One fun thing to know about Laura

“I’m an urban tomato farmer—not just a grower, a farmer,” she says. “I live in Chicago, and during the pandemic I chose to build a vegetable “farm” on my balcony. From just five plants I grew so many tomatoes I shared with my neighbors and donated to food pantries. Last year I was harvesting  until Thanksgiving!”

The 2021 DG Symposium

“Convince and Convert” is just one of the many virtual sessions you’ll want to experience during the 2021 DG Symposium, which kicks off September 13th.  This year’s event gives you free access to the biggest, most comprehensive line-up of Dangerous Goods experts we’ve ever presented. Here’s a partial list:

  • A top DG trainers’ panel
  • Domestic and international regulatory updates
  • A new session on DOT Audits
  • Updates from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security
  • “The Suez Canal and other Water Related Issues”
  • Expert advice on “Shipping Damaged/Defective/Recalled Lithium Batteries”
  • And the always-popular Lithium Battery Panel

All these presentations will feature live Q & A sessions, so you’ll have a chance to pick the experts’ brains on the topics that matter the most to your hazmat shipping operation.

And remember, this is just a preliminary list. We’re adding new topics and speakers every week!

This year’s Symposium, like last year’s will be hosted on the DG Exchange. To join these sessions live (or watch them on-demand later), you’ll need to be a DG Exchange member. If you haven’t already, you can set up a free account there in just minutes.

Don’t miss the Dangerous Goods event of the year—join us September 13th at the 2021 DG Symposium!

Make sure your shipments are safe and in complete compliance with a full line of solutions from Labelmaster—a full-service provider of goods and services for hazardous materials and Dangerous Goods professionals, shippers, transport operators and EH&S providers.


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