ICBA LIVE 2023: What to expect

Illustration by Maïté Franchi

With educational sessions on hot‑button issues, inspirational speakers and beneficial networking opportunities, ICBA LIVE is the greatest community banking event in the country. Here’s a sneak peek of what to expect from the event, held this year from March 12–16 in Honolulu.

3 ways ICBA LIVE will support your community bank’s 2023 plans

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To see the full ICBA LIVE agenda, including education sessions, or to register, visit

Each year, ICBA LIVE delivers a wide range of education and networking opportunities for community banks. But in today’s landscape, these benefits are amplified.

“If you look at LIVE’s education tracks, they are really focused on what continues to bubble to the top as the hottest issues for our bankers,” says Lindsay LaNore, group executive vice president and chief learning and experience officer at ICBA. “Everyone leaves the event with new information in hand to put into action back at their bank.”

Taking place in Honolulu from March 12–16, 2023, ICBA LIVE provides concrete benefits to community banks in three important ways:

1. New connections.

Attendees consistently point to the advantage of convening with their counterparts from around the U.S. Through receptions, banker roundtables and hallway conversations, new relationships develop and lead to product recommendations, program best practices and new ideas.

“Where else to meet other bankers than the greatest community banking event in the country?” LaNore says. “Once you make that connection, it does foster even deeper networks with other banks across the country.”

2. Personal and staff knowledge.

Tailored to the top priorities of community bankers, the educational programming at LIVE speaks to pressing topics such as workforce development, regulation and risk, and digital transformation and innovation. With more than 70 sessions scheduled, community bankers will have the opportunity to dive deep into detailed topics in 50-minute slots. For those who want to fit more in, new this year are quick-hit, 25-minute briefings of need-to-know information. In addition, the ThinkTECH All-Star Showcase (sidebar below) and Expo will introduce bankers to the newest technology solutions supporting community banks.

“You can expect to hear from bankers themselves,” LaNore says. “We ’re going to tell the stories of your peers dealing with these current topics and different issues across the industry.”

3. Bottom-line benefits.

Investing in training opportunities like those at LIVE has proven positive effects on financials. In fact, a survey from the Association for Talent Development found that organizations that offer comprehensive training programs have 218% higher income per employee than companies without it and a 24% higher profit margin than those that spend less on training.

“The greater we are vested in trends coming down the way, the more we are prepared for increased productivity, higher return on investment and higher profit margins,” LaNore says. “I think you see that by actively investing in your participation and your attendance at ICBA LIVE.”

With these benefits in mind, what should community bankers do to make the most of their LIVE experience? According to LaNore, it’s about staying thoughtfully engaged and applying the lessons learned in new ways.

“One of my biggest pieces of advice is to be present,” she says. “Spend that time taking your notes, digesting the information and making a plan to transfer that knowledge back to your bank.”

2023 speakers

Jessica Kriegel

Jessica Kriegel

For Jessica Kriegel, when it comes to employee retention, fulfillment wins over engagement every time.

“Engagement is not just about liking your job, it’s all about productivity—whether employees are able to focus on the task at hand,” says Kriegel, who is chief scientist of workplace culture for consultancy firm Culture Partners. “But an obsession with productivity leads to burnout, which leads to attrition, which we all have seen has led to the Great Resignation.”

According to Kriegel, the term “employee engagement” was invented in the 1990s to broaden the traditional measurement of job satisfaction, but it often left meaning and purpose out of the equation.

A more effective and sustainable way of managing employee sentiment, she says, is to focus on employee fulfillment. Are employees fully able to develop character and abilities within their careers at the organization? Is their purpose aligned with the organization’s purpose? How can leaders overcome barriers to fulfillment such as power dynamics and misplaced competition?

In her role, Kriegel uses this approach to help national and global organizations in the finance, technology, real estate and healthcare industries create intentional cultures that accelerate performance. In a banking space, you can leverage this to drive true motivation at every level.

“The more meaning and purpose employees find in their jobs, the more fulfilled they are,” she says.

Jessica Kriegel will discuss her “Culture Equation,” a tested model where strategy and culture are combined to deliver consistent results from employees, during the general session on Wednesday, March 15.

Alex Sheen

Alex Sheen

Alex Sheen wants to inspire others to become better at sticking to the commitments they make.

“It seems like a lot of people don’t keep their promises anymore,” says Sheen, founder of nonprofit Because I Said I Would. “It used to be that a handshake meant something. And think about the promises we even make to ourselves, about our health, family or work, that often go unfulfilled.”

The aim of Because I Said I Would is to help people build resiliency skills and develop character in order to honor promises. The nonprofit conducts programs at correctional facilities, including juvenile detention centers, and also runs after-school chapter programs at high schools.

Each school chapter holds monthly workshops focusing on character development as well as social and emotional skills. In addition, chapter members address needs in their local communities through initiatives such as literacy for youth, community beautification, social connectedness, food insecurity and care for cancer patients undergoing chemo treatments.

Because I Said I Would also recently acquired property for a summer camp for young people who have been abused, are experiencing suicidal ideation or are in bereavement. The nonprofit is working with school counselors to identify potential scholarship recipients.

See Alex Sheen during the general session on Wednesday, March 15.

Colin Coggins & Garrett Brown

Colin Coggins & Garrett Brown

“The greatest salespeople on the planet are not who people think of when they think of the word ‘sales,’” says Colin Coggins. “In reality, these people are not overly gregarious, but they are self-aware. If something they are saying to a prospect doesn’t land, they’re able to course-correct.”

Coggins, who cofounded Agency18 with Garrett Brown to help mission-driven organizations improve their employees’ leadership and sales skills, notes that sales skills are important even in a leadership role that has nothing to do with actual sales. He says a flexible and authentic approach like he describes above differentiates truly great leaders from those who pretend to be someone they’re not, even if it’s unintentional.

“They’re trying to be whatever version of themselves they think is going to be successful,” Coggins says. “They don’t think they can be their authentic self to do the job, but the opposite is actually true.”

Brown agrees that the average leader focuses strictly on the mechanics of their job: building rapport, overcoming objectives, asking for the close and even being an active listener. While those essentials are important, the most successful leaders focus most on being authentic.

“If you focus on the mindset and not just the blocking and tackling of how to sell [or persuade], you come across differently,” Brown says. “You’re actually someone who’s interested in the person, cares about them and genuinely wants to help them.”

Colin Coggins and Garrett Brown will discuss their innovative approach to leadership during the general session on Tuesday, March 14. Their book, The Unsold Mindset, is out now.

—Katie Kuehner-Hebert

LIVE exclusive: ThinkTECH All-Star Showcase

Over the past four years, more than 40 fintechs have made their way through ICBA’s ThinkTECH Accelerator program. Since then, their product offerings have evolved to meet new needs. This year, ICBA LIVE attendees can learn where these innovative companies stand today.

“We’ve heard the desire from bankers for us to bring back some of the companies that have been in our Accelerator,” explains Charles Potts, executive vice president and chief innovation officer at ICBA. “The nice thing about bringing our all-stars together is the ability for our bankers to see the successful deployments of these solutions.”

The two-hour ThinkTECH All-Star Showcase on March 12 will be in two parts. In the fast-pitch portion of the program, companies will present their products in rapid-fire demonstrations. Then, the panel discussion, facilitated by community bankers, will spotlight a different set of fintechs and drill into individual bank experiences.

“Nothing breeds success like success,” says Potts. “For many of these companies, the roadmap has already been identified by bankers who’ve put solutions in place. Having some mature alumni companies there gives our bankers a better opportunity to understand how they’ve gone to market.”

A lū‘au at LIVE

On the final night of ICBA LIVE 2023, attendees are invited to engage in a Hawaiian lū‘au. What does that entail, exactly?

A 200-year Hawaiian tradition, lū‘aus mark special occasions—birthdays, graduations or events like LIVE—with food, music and dancing. Popular lū‘au foods include poi, kālua pig and laulau.

Join us for this special event to celebrate our host state’s beautiful culture, with one more opportunity to illuminate the great conversations and camaraderie shared in paradise!

Don’t miss the ICBA LIVE Expo

There’s so much to experience in this year’s Expo—you’ll see something new every time you visit. At this event, you can connect with industry-leading innovators and learn about solutions that are helping community banks thrive.

Other highlights include:

  • Whiteboarding with Experts: 20-minute expert-led discussions on various banking solutions
  • Mad Dash for Cash: an opportunity to win cash and prizes while playing Plinko
  • A variety of food and beverage, including coffee and soft drinks, a “Taste of Hawaii” lunch sampler and snacks lining the aisles
  • Hands-on Hawaiian activities: Make your own lei po’o (a crown of flowers), and enjoy fresh pineapple or a smoothie to get into the Hawaiian spirit
  • Prize Party: A collection of prizes will be awarded during the final 30 minutes of the Expo. You have to be present to win, so don’t miss a moment of the fun!

Expo hours

Sunday, March 12
10:30 a.m. – 2 p.m.
4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. (welcome reception)
Monday, March 13
9:30 a.m. – 1:15 p.m.


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