Happy Fed

It's no secret that federal agencies are better able to achieve their missions when their employees are happy and productive—when employees find their work fulfilling and feel a vested interest in seeing programs succeed. That is the focus of the Happy Fed Pavilion at ACQUIRE.

Produced by Federal Soup, the Happy Fed Pavilion features fed-focused exhibitors dedicated to helping federal employees:

  1. Improve the quality of their work life, addressing everything from managing their benefits and retirement packages to developing a better balance between their professional and personal lives.
  2. Improve their capacity to build and manage productive and resilient teams that can deliver on their agency’s mission.
  3. Recalibrate their work practices so they feel more productive and fulfilled.

Happy Fed Theater

The Happy Fed Theater, located in the pavilion, features renowned authors, federal benefits experts and professional development sessions dedicated to helping federal employees like you with career goals, life-planning and much more! Learn how to:

  • Manage millennials and veterans in the agency workplace
  • Plan career transitions between and within agencies
  • Understand your federal benefits plans
  • Maximize your Thrift Savings Account
  • Prepare for long-term well-being, including retirement and life insurance federal benefits

View the 2016 Happy Fed Sessions & Keynotes



  • Wednesday, June 8
  • 12:15 pm – 1:00 pm
The Agility Shift by Pamela Meyer

Happy Fed Keynote:
Pamela Meyer, Ph.D.

The Agility Shift: Creating Agile and Effective Leaders, Teams and Organizations

Watch the Keynote Presentation

As contrary as it sounds, “planning”—as we traditionally understand the term—can be the worst thing a company can do. Consider that volatile weather events disrupt trusted supply chains, markets, and promised delivery schedules. Ever-shifting geo-political tensions, as well as internal political upheaval within U.S. and global governments, derail long-planned new ventures. Technology failures block opportunities. Competitors suddenly change their product or release date; your team cannot meet the pace of innovations in your market niche, leaving you sidelined. There are myriad ways in the current business environment for a company’s well-considered business plans to go awry.

Most business schools continue to prepare managers to be effective in stable and predictable environments, conditions that, if they ever existed at all, are long gone. The Agility Shift shows business leaders exactly how to make the radical mindset and strategy shift necessary to create an agile, entrepreneurial organization that can innovate and thrive in complex, ever-changing contexts. As author Pamela Meyer explains, there is much more involved than a reconfiguration of the org chart and job descriptions. It requires relinquishing the illusion of control at the very foundation of most management training and business practice. Despite most leaders' approaches, “Agility is not simply accelerated planning.”

Unlike many agility books on the market, The Agility Shift provides specific, actionable strategies and tactics for leaders at all levels of the organization to put into practice immediately to improve agility and achieve results.

About Pamela Meyer

Pamela Meyer, Ph.D., is the President of Meyer Creativity Associates where she works with organizations internationally who want to be more innovative and agile. Meyer is the author of three books on innovation, learning and change, including From Workspace to Playspace: Innovating, Learning and Changing Through Dynamic Engagement (Jossey-Bass, 2010). In addition to her speaking and consulting practice, Pamela teaches courses in business creativity, organizational change, and adult learning at DePaul University, School for New Learning in Chicago, where she is also the Director of the Center to Advance Education for Adults.

  • Thursday, June 9
  • 12:15 pm – 1:00 pm
Grit to Great by Linda Thaler

Happy Fed Keynote:
Linda Kaplan Thaler

Grit to Great

Watch the Keynote Presentation

In Grit to Great, Linda Kaplan Thaler and Robin Koval tackle a topic that is close to their hearts, one that they feel is the real secret to their own success in their careers—and in the careers of so many people they know and have met. And that is the incredible power of grit, perseverance, perspiration, determination, and sheer stick-to-it-tiveness. We are all dazzled by the notion that there are some people who get ahead, who reach the corner office because they are simply gifted, or well-connected, or both. But research shows that we far overvalue talent and intellectual ability in our culture. The fact is, so many people get ahead--even the gifted ones--because they worked incredibly hard, put in the thousands of hours of practice and extra sweat equity, and made their own luck. And Linda and Robin should know—they are two girls from the Bronx who had no special advantages or privileges and rose up through their own hard work and relentless drive to succeed to the top of their highly competitive profession.

In a book illustrated with a cornucopia of stories and the latest research on success, the authors reveal the strategies that helped them, and countless others, succeed at the highest levels in their careers and professions, and in their personal lives. They talk about the guts—the courage—necessary to take on tough challenges and not give up at the first sign of difficulty. They discuss the essential quality of resiliency. Everyone suffers setbacks in their careers and in life. The key, however, is to pick yourself up and bounce back. Drawing on the latest research in positive psychology, they discuss why optimists do better in school, work, and on the playing field--and how to reset that optimistic set point. They talk about industriousness, the notion that Malcolm Gladwell popularized with the 10,000-hour rule in his book Outliers. Creativity theorist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi believes it takes a minimum of 10 years for one's true creative potential to be realized. And the authors explore the concept of tenacity—the quality that allows us to remain focused and avoid distraction in order to get the job done—an increasingly difficult task in today's fragmented, cluttered, high-tech, connected world.

Written in the same short, concise format as The Power of Nice and leavened with the natural humor that characterizes Linda's and Robin's lives—and books—Grit to Great is destined to be the book everyone in business needs.

About Linda Kaplan Thaler

Linda Kaplan Thaler is responsible for some of America's most famous advertising campaigns in the industry, including the Aflac duck, and the daring "Yes, Yes, Yes" for Herbal Essences. Much of her work has become part of America's pop-culture landscape and she has composed renowned jingles such as, "I'm a Toys 'R' Us Kid," and "Kodak Moments." Linda has also worked on presidential campaigns for Clinton/Gore in 1992 and Hillary Clinton in 2008. Today, Linda is the Chairman of Publicis Kaplan Thaler with a client roster that includes: P&G, Citi, L'Oreal, Pfizer and Wendy's.

Linda is also a best-selling author and television personality appearing on "The Apprentice,” CNN, The Today Show, Good Morning America, and host of Oxygen's series "Making It Big." Her collaborations with coauthor Robin Koval have all become best-sellers: The Power of Small, The Power of Nice, and Bang! Getting Your Message Heard in a Noisy World. Their new book GRIT to GREAT, will debut this fall. Advertising Hall of Famer Linda Kaplan Thaler is responsible for some of America’s most famous, relevant and touching advertising campaigns in the industry, including the Aflac duck quack heard round the world and the daring “Yes, Yes, Yes” for Clairol Herbal Essences. Much of her work has become part of the American pop-culture landscape. She has authored and composed jingles that are among the industry’s gold standard, including “I Don’t Wanna Grow Up, I’m a Toys ‘R’ Us Kid,” and “Kodak Moments.” She holds numerous Clio Awards and Cannes Lions for her ground breaking advertising campaigns.

Linda served as Chairman of Publicis Kaplan Thaler, a fully integrated advertising agency that was the U.S. flagship within the Publicis Worldwide Network. Its blue-chip client roster included: P&G, Citi, Nestle, L’Oreal, Pfizer and Wendy’s, to name a few. Previously, Linda was CEO and Chief Creative Officer of the Kaplan Thaler Group, which she founded in 1997 and grew from a fledgling start-up to a company with over a billion dollars in billings. Linda has worked on several political campaigns, including the presidential runs for Clinton/Gore in 1992 and Hillary Clinton in 2008. Today, Linda is a world renowned motivational speaker and is President of Kaplan Thaler Productions.

Linda is also a celebrated author and television personality. Her collaborations with coauthor Robin Koval have all become national bestsellers: Bang! Getting Your Message Heard in a Noisy World, The Power of Small, and The Power of Nice. Their newest bestseller, "GRIT to GREAT," has been listed as one of the top business books for 2015. Ms. Thaler is a familiar face in the media, having appeared on "The Apprentice," "Good Morning America," "The Today Show," CNN and Fox News. Linda hosted the Oxygen television series “Making It Big,” as well being a judge on the Marc Burnett reality series, "Jingles."

Linda’s talents have earned her the prestigious Matrix Award, the Advertising Woman of the Year Award, the UJA’s Mac Dane Humanitarian Award, and the Women’s Leadership Exchange’s Compass Award, and was named one of Advertising Age’s “Most Influential Women in Advertising.” Linda has also won New York Women in Film and Television’s Muse Award, the first woman in advertising to receive this honor.

A native New Yorker, Linda is a Phi Beta Kappa and Magna cum Laude graduate of CCNY, with a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a master’s degree in music. Linda currently sits on the Advisory Council for The Colin Powell School at CCNY and also served as the 2010/2011 President of New York Women in Communications. Linda is married to composer Fred Thaler and has two children, Michael and Emily.

Gold Sponsors

  • Happy Fed
  • Happy Fed

Silver Sponsor