National Learning & Development Conference

Croke Park Stadium, 6th December 2018

Leading the learning and development profession in Ireland by inspiring excellence in practice to develop individuals and organisations to reach their full potential

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Jane Daly

Head of Strategic Insights, Towards Maturity

Towards Maturity’s expert analysts have been championing the development of the L&D industry since 2003, driving insights that deliver real impact. To date over 6,500 learning leaders from around the globe have participanted in the annual benchmark which sees them contributing strategic intellegence to help analyse, ativate and accelerate change within organisations. 

Matt Cooper

Master of Ceremonies

Matt Cooper is presenter of The Last Word daily current affairs radio show on Today FM and co-presenter of The Tonight Show on Virgin Media One. His latest book, his fourth, is Michael O’Leary, Turbulent Times for the Man Who Made Ryanair. 

Danny McCoy

CEO, Ibec

Danny McCoy is CEO at Ibec, the group that represents Irish business.   He has been a visiting lecturer at the IMD Business School in Switzerland and Harvard University in the US.  He is a regular contributor in the print and broadcast media and has written columns for the Wall Street Journal, the Financial Times and the Irish Times. 

David Storrs

Managing Director, hpc

Our lead conference sponsor, hpc has been a leading provider of behavioural change solutions for over thirty years – creating powerful partnerships with clients in Ireland, the UK, US and Europe. For the past 18 years, David Storrs has led the hpc team as they help clients create a high performance culture. Key to hpc’s success is the ability to combine the latest research in behavioural change, learning design and transfer with their team’s experience to create solutions that deliver results, through people.


Sinead Marron

Learning and Change Management Consultant, GSK

Sinead has over 20 years’ experience in large national and multinational organisations. Over the past 8 years, she has travelled the world on behalf of GSK supporting them to navigate their global transformational change programmes. She is a co-author of Professional Practice in Training & Development – An Essential Guide.

Cilian Fennell

Director, Stillwater Communications

Cilian is a Director of Stillwater Communications and is one of Ireland’s leading communications and messaging development consultants. He is known for his authenticity, passion and understanding of storytelling and communication, and works with leaders across all sectors in Ireland and internationally. His experience in media, politics, business and the NGO sector has given Cilian a deep understanding of how society works and he uses this understanding to give relevant and timely strategic advice.

Tracey Waters

Head of People Engagement and Development, Sky UK

Tracey is the Head of People Development and Communications at Sky UK. Tracey’s experience in learning, leadership and talent spans nearly 15 years. She has worked across multiple industries including media and telecommunications, mining, transport and logistics, employment services, and recruitment, in both Australia and the UK.

Kevin Hannigan

IITD President & Head of Talent Consulting, hpc

Appointed in September 2018 as IITD President, Kevin leads the Learning and Talent Consulting offering in hpc.  He brings with him a deep wealth of knowledge and passion for developing and growing talent.

Tara Doyle

Partner, Matheson

Tara is a partner and the head of the Asset Management and Investment Funds Group at Matheson.
Appointed a partner with Matheson at the age of 29, Tara advises many of the world’s leading financial institutions, investment banks, asset management companies, broker-dealers and corporations carrying on business in Ireland or through Irish vehicles.
She is an elected member of the Council which governs Irish Funds, the representative body for the Irish funds industry. Tara also chairs Matheson’s Trainee Liaison Committee

Emmet Browne

CEO, Nuritas

Emmet holds more than 25 years of international experience within some of the world’s largest Life-Science companies. He has held senior positions including Regional President at Pfizer Nutritionals for Europe, Pacific Rim Emerging Markets, Managing Director for Wyeth Pharmaceuticals in Ireland and President of Transition and Integration for Nestle based in their Global HQ in Vevey, Switzerland.

Christian Kinnear

Vice President and MD, HubSpot EMEA

Christian joined HubSpot Dublin in October 2015 as Director of Sales, where he was responsible for coordinating the company’s sales strategy across key regions. Quickly proving his ability to be a great cross-functional leader, Christian has served as HubSpot’s EMEA Managing Director for the last three years.

Nikki O’Hanlon

Learning Consultant, Learning Exchange (Bank of Ireland)

Nikki is passionate about innovation in learning and works closely with the Learning Exchange team to create a personalised, fresh and exciting learning experience. Nikki recently co-led a project to implement a new state of the art learning management system for 11,000 colleagues, which included a full rebrand of the learning service.

Marc Giles

Head of Guest Experience, Aer Lingus

Marc has 15 years experience in the airline/aviation sector, specialising in service strategy, proposition development and cultural/behavioural/process change. He leads the multi award-winning ‘Good to Great’ guest experience transformation programme at Aer Lingus, resulting in the airline achieving a Skytrax 4-star rating, positioning them as a leading global carrier.

Tina Forrester

Senior Manager, EU Customer Services L&D, Blizzard Entertainment

Tina leads and develops customer service learning & development at Blizzard. She collaborates and contributes globally, reinforcing learning and development initaiatives to drive positive, measurable and sustainable learning experiences and providing learning throughout the European region.

John Mulreid

Learning and Development Manager, FBD Insurance plc.

John manages the L&D function within FBD. He has over 15 years’ experience in designing and implementing innovative organisational wide solutions in a blended learning environment. He has a passion for excellence in digital learning and most recently implemented an immersive Virtual Reality learning experience within the insurance industry.

Ashley Kenny

Learner Experience Design Lead, Learning Exchange (Accenture)

Ashley has worked in Accenture for 6 years and has 3 years learning experience with Learning Exchange. Ashley’s primary role is transforming the Learner Experience from the old to the new digital and personalised world. One of the most recent projects Ashley has worked on and is extremely proud of is co-leading the Cornerstone on demand LMS Integration for 11,000 Bank of Ireland learners including the rebrand of the learning service.



08:00 AM


08:30 AM


Sinead Heneghan – IITD CEO

David Storrs – MD hpc 

Matt Cooper – MC

08:45 AM

Danny McCoy

CEO Ibec

How L&D can contribute to Ireland’s competitive advantage; the importance of capability in attracting investment and the need to drive capability to encourage reinvestment

09:15 AM

Panel Discussion

Understanding a leader’s perspective on the importance of capability development and how it links to the strategic business agenda 

Danny McCoy (CEO, ibec); Christian Kinnear (Hubspot)

Emmet Browne (Nuritas); Tara Doyle (Matheson)

10:15 AM


Networking & Coffee

10:45 AM

Tracey Waters

(Sky UK)

Sinead Marron


Transforming your engagement with the business through Learning & Development

11:45 AM

Learning Best Practice Hotspots

Session 1



Learning Exchange

Session 2



Aer Lingus

Session 3




Session 4




Session 5




12:45 PM


1:45 PM

Harnessing Talent to Find Your Hidden Potential

2:15 PM

Cilian Fennell

Stillwater Communications

Using Stories as a Vehicle for Transformation

A Master-class on the power and impact of stories

3:00 PM


Networking & Coffee

3:15 PM

Towards Maturity

Jane Daly

The Transformation Curve – Providing the Future Roadmap for Learning & Development

4:15 PM


Kevin Hannigan (IITD President)

4:30 PM


“Looking forward to a great day learning from industry leaders about how learning & development can support the workplace of the future”

“What a great day- the buzz- the energy- the engagement, Well done”

“What an insightful and inspiring event – great line-up of speakers! Thank you @iitd_ireland for such a brilliant day!”

Croke Park Stadium

Croke Park one of the world’s most wholly unique and flexible venues for bringing people together – to be inspired and entertained.

With recently renovated and state of the art conference facilities, Croke Park is Dublin’s premier conference facility.

In the vibrant heart of Dublin city, the only venue in the city offering up to 600 free and secure parking spaces.

As the home of Ireland’s largest sporting and cultural organisation, the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) – Croke Park has played host to iconic moments in Irish sport & history and to major cultural and international events.

Croke Park is one of Europe’s largest stadia, with a capacity of 82,300 and can accommodate all types of events – from field sports to concerts, conferences to tradeshows and bespoke banqueting.


Our central location in Dublin 3, is within easy reach of the city centre, Dublin Airport and Dublin port.

Visitors Entrance on Jones Road

By bus:Dublin Bus offers a high-frequency, accessible and easy to use service from all over Dublin. A number of services bring you quite close to Croke Park and many others will get you to the city centre from where the stadium is a 15 minute walk.

Bus Routes that serve Croke Park
1, 7, 11, 13, 14, 16, 27a, 27b, 29a, 31/a, 31b, 32, 33, 40, 40b, 40d, 41, 41b, 41c, 42, 43, 44, 53, 123, 13

By Bus Éireann: Bus Éireann provide a nationwide bus service and private coach hire options to travelling fans. You can find out more about their schedules and services on the GAA News section of their site.

On DART/LUAS: Both the DART and LUAS networks provide an excellent service from many different parts of Dublin.  In most cases ‘park & ride’ is available at various stations along the route.Take the Luas Red Line to Connolly Station and Croke Park is just a 15 minute walk.

By train: Iarnród Éireann provides convenient travel services for anyone travelling to Croke Park from rail connected locations around the country. For further information, visit


If you are travelling the evening before and need accommodation, please note the following hotels which are close to the event:

The Croke Park Hotel
The Spencer Hotel 

The Gibson Hotel 
The Gresham Hotel

Irish Institute of Training & Development

4, Sycamore House,

Millennium Park


Co. Kildare

T: 045-881166