A Q&A With Nancie Ruder! #SHRM18

I decided to reach out to Nancie because the name of her session at SHRM 18 really grabbed my attention – “Unlocking Marketing Strategy to Optimize Recruitment.” I love the marketing side of recruitment and using social media and strategy to build a brand that attracts people to consider opportunities at my company. I wanted to learn more about Nancie and her consulting business! I’m looking forward to meeting her at the conference. You can find everything you need to know about Nancie’s business and how to contact her on her website – noeticconsultants.com Thank you Nancie for your time to answer these questions and share your background and work experience with attendees.

Nancie, would you mind telling us a little bit about yourself and what made you decide to start your own consulting firm?

I began my marketing career in the agency world with the Leo Burnett Company in Chicago, Illinois. I had the privilege of working on brands like Procter & Gamble, Eli Lilly and Gap. Later, I had the opportunity to develop and launch Leo Burnett’s online portal and spearheaded their global new business efforts.

Back then when I was just beginning my career, I wouldn’t have expected to start a business. But, in hindsight, it is not much of a surprise. My role model and mentor was always my Dad, who passed away in 2011. I think about him all the time, drawing strength from his example both personally and professionally. He was also an entrepreneur and had a great business mind. He knew how to break down a problem and how to remain calm under pressure. His example impressed on me that I could be a business owner and remain my authentic self. He practiced matrimonial law and brought a lot of empathy and compassion to a process that can host a lot of pain. His example inspired me to start a business. I also think of certain champions in my own life who all but insisted I consult for them when I wasn’t sure if I could make the leap to entrepreneur.

Since launching Noetic Consulting in 2002, I’ve provided strategic guidance to clients large and small, including: AT&T, Discovery Channel, Georgetown University, Leo Burnett, McCann Worldgroup, Nike, P.A.D.I., Vail Resorts, Wisechoice, Samsung Electronics, AKQA, SmithFarm Healing Center and others.

What is your favorite thing about owning your own business?

The journey of working with a great team on great projects is the true reward for me. It has been, and always will be, about enjoying the day to day together. I have a deep appreciation for how unhappy a team can be if they do not enjoy the day to day. I want every member to feel excited about the work they are doing and feel adept at their core competencies. Going on this journey – together – is my favorite part.

I’m sure a lot of companies need help with their marketing strategy and aren’t sure where to start! Can you share one of your favorite success stories?

One recent success is with a client that is a renewable energy company. What is so exciting about working with them is that they had not done any marketing at all until the time we partnered with them. They are a startup group that is part of a global organization, so the possibilities for success are great, given deep resources yet an entrepreneurial approach. We started from scratch with defining their key audiences, crafting their marketing messages, determining their strategic channel plan, then executing that plan alongside them. They are creating significant thought leadership and sales growth in their industry, and we could not be prouder to be a part of it.

At Noetic, we are custom in our approach so we can meet clients where they are – if they have a significant marketing group, we can bolt on in meaningful ways where they need the help. If they do not have any resource in this area, we can play that role – or play anywhere else on the spectrum that a client needs. If the expertise they need does not fit ours – for example, we do not do PR – we will find them a strong recommended partner.

What are your favorite volunteer activities or ways to give back to the community?

True to our “Help First” value at Noetic, I have always gone out of my way to help young people and peers in whatever career related need they might have. It has been my pleasure to have helped many a person get a job or to have given them career advice. I have especially done this for a lot of young women. It is a conscious effort I make. Ever since I was in middle school, people came to me for advice, and as a result, this became a very built out “muscle” for me.

In a more formal capacity, I served on the Specialty Unit Board at Children’s Hospital. In this capacity, I helped guide the donation of time, expertise, and dollars that are necessary in building & sustaining a specialty unit, like a NICU. This was a very personal endeavor for me. My youngest daughter was a recipient of these services at Children’s Hospital as an infant. So, it was a tangible and meaningful way for me to express my gratitude. Another organization I have supported is NFTE. NFTE is an organization dedicated to helping kids in less fortunate areas learn how to become entrepreneurs. Schools commit to the yearlong program and students go through a curriculum to learn how to start and run a business. NFTE provides the instructor and materials, and then invites companies to come and serve as a judge. I have had the privilege to serve as a judge on several occasions and deeply enjoy interacting with these amazing kids.

Lastly, I served as a Girls on the Run coach for 3 years. Girls on the Run is a grass roots organization that connects women coaches with young girls in grades 3rd-5th. Each team works through a 10-week curriculum and works together to complete a 5k twice per year. The curriculum includes lesson topics such as gossip and body image. It was an exciting and rewarding opportunity to tangibly see these girls grow in confidence and learn healthy habits. The best part was the sense of accomplishment and pride they felt when running across the finish line!

Your session is called: “Unlocking Marketing Strategy to Optimize Recruitment” – why is this topic important for HR and TA leaders to attend?

As I mentioned previously, and as attendees of this conference know, team members make a company great. Of course, culture and leadership help, but building teams that are strong together really matters. But, to do that you need to communicate a message of why a candidate should consider opportunities with your company – it’s marketing! I want to help HR & TA leaders build the strongest teams that also enjoy the journey of working together. This ensures you not only acquire, but attain, great talent.

What do you look forward to most at SHRM’s annual conference?

I attended SHRM for the first time in 2016, and was deeply impressed with the caliber of speakers as well as the learning spirit of the attendees. This year I look forward to attending various presentations where I can learn more, as well as connecting with colleagues who will attend from the Chicago area (my old stomping grounds!)

Any advice for first time attendees?

Noetic conducts a lot of trainings for marketing teams. In these trainings we talk a about “above the line” thinking. “Above the line” thinking means remaining in curiosity mode, open to new ideas. I’d challenge every attendee – but especially first timers – to remain “above the line” and remain present and open to learning in every session they attend. This seems to be the approach SHRM encourages as well, so I am optimistic that first timers will find this spirit infectious!

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