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Fusion Conference inspires region

Keynote Doug Griffiths presenting on Everything is About to Change at Fusion to help communities thrive. Submitted Photo.

Economic developers and community minded individuals from the surrounding area gathered in Bowman last week for the 3rd annual 2019 Fusion Conference.

By Frank Turner

Executive Director of the Bowman County Development Corporation Teran Doerr described the Fusion conference as a development opportunity for the local rural region where people can connect and discuss exciting opportunities.

“Fusion is meant to help grow the communities in our region by providing personal and professional development opportunities for our businesses,” said Doerr. “We bring in nationally recognized speakers to help motivate and impact the region.”

This year, keynote speakers National Best Selling Author Doug Griffiths, Vice President of Global Innovation for Doosan Bobcat Joel Honeyman, and YouTube Celebrity Judson Laipply focused on the theme: EVOLVE. The goal of the theme, according to Doerr, was to encourage attendees to thrive in an ever-changing world.

“Our communities and businesses are changing,” said Doerr. “It’s important for us to consider these changes in order to grow.”

In addition to three keynote speakers, three dynamic panels tackled noteworthy discussion. The first panel, composed of speakers spanning three generations, covered the different values of each generation and what they expect in the workplace. The second panel, Get Your Head Straight, covered mental health and productivity. Lastly, in the final panel, Happened Here: Happiness at Work, speakers shared their insights into positive work culture and its link to positive work outcomes. 

The Bowman County Development Corporation covers the highlights of the conference in the following press release:

BOWMAN, N.D. (October 4, 2019) – The third annual Fusion Conference did not disappoint. Hosted October 1st-2nd in rural Bowman, ND; it was a conference worth attending. The theme centered on Evolving, highlighting that innovation and change don’t happen by chance, we must be intentional about it.

Judson Laipply, emcee and keynote shared the Evolution of Dance. As the first YouTube Celebrity, he entertained, created laughter, and left attendees feeling inspired. Doug Griffiths, a keynote who travels the world to talk to communities about the changes they must make to succeed and thrive provided a very direct message that hit home. The third keynote, Joel Honeyman, VP of Global Innovation for Doosan Bobcat spoke on how this leading global manufacturing company is evolving and pushing the limits on innovation.

Fusion is attended by individuals from all walks of life, backgrounds, and regions. The goal of the conference is to not only infuse different aspects of your life, but also build your network of business leaders, employees, and community advocates.

When asked her favorite part of the conference Kayla Steffans responded, “The networking part of it. I’ve been in the area for five years, but I feel like I’ve struggled to connect with the people I’ve wanted to and there were so many people I had such great conversations with and resonated with on so many levels.”

Fusion knows that the stronger the region is, the stronger your network is, the stronger you are.

“I think it is such a neat atmosphere to come as you are, and to be able to take tidbits away from everyone that is here and expand your life. Not just your business or career, but to expand your way of thinking. So you’re not just in your same tunnel of small-town, rural America, but to say what else is out there? What other things can we do?” said attendee Sam Olson, owner of Buffalo Hardware.

Expanding their way of thinking is exactly what Fusion did this year, with two keynotes who focused on how the world used to be and what has caught on that we never anticipated. It’s time to innovate or we will get left behind and become irrelevant.

For the second time a keynote was sent into local schools to inspire students to go after their dreams and imagine anything is possible. By investing in our youth now, we are investing in our community leaders, community advocates, and business owners.

“The best part about putting this conference on is bringing a bunch of people from different background and bringing them together in one room to bring excitement, energy, and action to take back to where they are coming from,” said Laura Weber, Fusion Team Member.

Fusion generates inspiration. It’s about pushing attendees to new heights. It’s about seeing business and communities thrive and a key part to doing that is investing in personal growth and knowledge.

“My favorite part about hosting Fusion is the impact. It’s bettering our businesses and communities through education and personal growth. We want to reach entrepreneurs, business leaders, team members, our ag community, and community leaders. We are accomplishing that goal, “said Teran Doerr, Fusion Team Member.

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