Laura Queen Helps Maximize the Value of Human Capital at the Exit Planning Summit

The 2023 Exit Planning Summit heads back to Scottsdale, Arizona this May. This year we are thrilled to have over 40 speakers, over 30 industry partners, 16 breakout sessions, five Power Sessions, and three supplemental workshops in our Summit lineup. 

March is Women’s History Month. As we celebrate the women in the EPI Community, this month we are highlighting some of the incredible women who will share their knowledge and insights with our network at the 2023 Exit Planning Summit. 

Today we introduce one of our Breakout speakers, Laura Queen.   

Meet Laura Queen

With more than 25 years of leadership experience in human capital, talent management, and M&A, Laura Kellers Queen has emerged as a leading voice in the HR field. She has quite literally changed the language within these arenas to better reflect and quantify the role and impact of the workforce on corporate performance. “People Alpha” – or the excess return available to investors who recognize talent as strategic business assets — has arrived and is creating advantages for those who adopt a more systematic, outcome-oriented approach to human capital management. Her book, People Economics: Defining and Measuring the True Value of Human Capital is widely regarded as a provocative and essential business resource.

With an EdD in Human and Organization Learning from George Washington University, and an MSA in HR Administration from West Chester University of Pennsylvania, Laura’s detour from a traditional career path in human resources was the culmination of an idea, a feeling, and a drive to recognize employees as true business assets versus merely an expense on the balance sheet. She is co-founder and CEO of HCM consultant 29Bison and AlphaCalc (a talent and intangible-asset valuation tool). 29Bison is a Certified Women Owned Business and a member of the Council for Inclusive Capitalism with the Vatican. In addition to frequent public speaking, Laura continues to light the way for those with a blind spot when it comes to assessing and valuing the role of people in the success of a business.

Laura is an adjunct faculty member of graduate studies for Moravian College, a member of the board of directors for Aries Foundation for Financial Education and Juniper Productions. She has been the Mentorship Advisor for and a former member of the Advisory Board of the Healthcare Businesswoman’s Association’s (HBA) Greater Philadelphia Chapter, Chairman of the Leadership Advisory Council for Moravian College, and a Consortia member of the Center for Positive Organizations at the Ross School, University of Michigan.

She has a Doctorate in Human and Organizational Learning from The George Washington University (Washington, DC), an MSA in Human Resources Administration from West Chester University (West Chester, PA), and a BA in Industrial Organizational Psychology from Moravian College (Bethlehem, PA).

What made you eager to speak at the 2023 Exit Planning Summit?

Laura: The Exit Planning Summit is such a rich environment for genuine conversations about how to build and exit from strong, vibrant, and valuable businesses. This community is a tremendous place to share views and tools and learn from others.

What can Summit attendees expect from your session this May? 

Laura: I hope to provoke a conversation and shift a paradigm. We instinctively know how important people are to business, but when talk turns to issues of people and human capital there’s a lot of squirming in seats. Human capital is viewed as squishy, hard to measure, immaterial, and soft. I’d like to share a different point of view, and discuss why, especially now, people really are our most valuable and investable assets.

Other than your session, what are you most looking forward to about the Summit? 

Laura: I always learn from speaking to others. I learn by hearing their personal and professional experiences, listening to their stories, and picking up tools I can use as a business owner and with our clients. The pearls of wisdom are everywhere.

Who are your role models in business? 

Laura: As a small child, my siblings and I used to play office, pretending to run the family’s former tugboat company. I’ve had ‘the bug’ for as long as I can remember. I often look to historical figures such as Eleanor Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln for leadership inspiration and grounding in my passion for the value of people.

How have you served as a role model for others in your industry and in your personal life? 

Laura: I never set out to be a role model. Rather, I wake up every day wanting to make a difference and fulfill a purpose, which for me is deeply tied to championing the value of people in organizations. Experience taught me there was a gap, or perhaps an opportunity, to address this through working on human capital and culture in mergers and acquisitions. So that’s what I did. I hope my work is evidence that you have to believe something wholeheartedly before you can see it. My children and peers are both proud and baffled by what I do and it makes for fun dinner table conversation. 

What advice do you have for women looking to start their own business or grow their business? 

Laura: Not long ago I was told, by a well-intentioned advisory board member, that I should not market or develop business for my own company. He was convinced that as a woman I couldn’t open doors or overcome the bias toward women, especially women talking about “human resources.” Past experience and intellect led me to believe he might be right. Not one to walk away from a good triple-dog-dare, I purposefully took on most of this work myself, even though I have a very capable team. As the founder, no one knows the business or has more conviction about our work than I do. You’d be surprised how many doors that will open, and how generous others will be when you are genuine and credible. Ask for help and advice, trust your gut, and never sell yourself short. As Eleanor Roosevelt would advise, “do something every day that scares you.”

Register for the Exit Planning Summit

This year, Exit Planning Institute is hosting the first-ever Women in Exit Planning Symposium after the Exit Planning Summit. The Women in Exit Planning Symposium will bring together women advisors, business owners, and men who work on women business owners’ advisory teams. This event will foster collaboration between all different advisor specialties together in the exit planning community. It will feature a panel of female exit planners who will share best practices, discuss challenges women face in the exit planning profession, and how to build value in your business. Additionally, the symposium offers a chance for exit planning professionals to network with other women across the advisory community.

Bundle your Exit Planning Summit registration with the Women in Exit Planning Symposium for four days filled with incredible exit planning and business development content. 

Register here!

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