Tag Archives: HR Conferences

Should Executives Embrace Social Media?

This was originally posted on the MonsterThinking blog on July 29, 2011 found here.

As business leaders, we’ve always known our customers talk about their experience with us.  Sometimes it’s good…sometimes, well, not so much.

Ten years ago, heck, five years ago, if we really cared about what our customers were saying to their families and friends about their experiences with us, we sent surveys to find out what they were thinking, feeling and saying.

Today?  Well, we’ve got the social web to provide a ready and steady stream of information about what our customers, employees, competitors, stockholders, investors, vendors, suppliers, analysts, employment candidates, neighbors and random strangers are thinking, feeling and saying about our organizations.

In fact, there’s so much information flowing that new departments within the customer service, public relations, sales, marketing, human resources, legal and investor relations divisions (and sometimes in all of them simultaneously) are being created to monitor what’s being said by whom and to figure out what to do about it.

With all the noise, with all the new tools (it’s not just Twitter and YouTube anymore), with all the organization attention being paid, why should an executive enter into the world of social media – beyond their personal LinkedIn account and FaceBookpage?  Here’s one executive’s story:

When I was leading SHRM (the Society for Human Resource Management, with more than 250,000 members in over 140 countries) as its Chief Operating Officer, I became aware of a pretty large group of very smart, very active and leading edge HR professionals who were quite vocal about their disdain for the organization.  They were talking with each other through various social and new media tools and had accidentally (I think) created a community that I thought of as the “anti-SHRM gang.”

But here was the thing:  they were terrific HR leaders and consultants.  They were experts in the field.  Many were certified by the Human Resource Certification Institute.  They were active in learning and sharing their knowledge as mentors and coaches – formally and informally.  They were great!  Many of them are future Fortune 500 Chief Human Resource Officers.  And except for their anti-SHRM sentiments, they were just like SHRM members…with one major exception:  they were experimenting with and diving head long into the world of social media.

It was very clear to me that these were just the folks SHRM needed as members at the national level and leaders at the local level.  They included all the age demographics – this wasn’t just a GenX thing.  And they were writing blogs, hosting and participating in internet radio shows, innovating ways to use Twitter – all in an effort to create a community of like-minded professionals.  (They were also innovating ways to use social media applications to make their practice of HR more effective and efficient.)  And I couldn’t get them out of my head:  I wanted them involved in moving SHRM forward.

So I took up the challenge and created a Twitter account.  Because I wanted to be transparent about who I was, I chose the handle @SHRMCOO (now @ChinaGorman).  I wanted to let them know I was lurking.  I would ask questions from time to time and I re-tweeted comments I found interesting.  And I began to comment on blog posts that I thought were controversial.  But mostly, I listened and responded with lightning speed if anyone asked me a question.  In short, I listened.  I didn’t try to “tell” anyone anything.  I didn’t try to recruit new members.  I didn’t try to sell conference registrations.  I simply engaged in order to learn what was on the mind of these future members.  And I learned a lot!

The bottom line is that I made myself available in a transparent way to engage with our customers and potential customers.  And although I was just one executive at the world’s largest HR association, the symbolism to the full HR community – members and nonmembers alike – was powerful for our organization.  This community began to see SHRM in a new light.  “If a SHRM executive was engaged with social media, maybe this isn’t my father’s/mother’s HR association after all.”  And several of them joined and began to get involved.  That was good, and I’m glad for that, but what was most important was to hear their voices, understand their issues, and engage them in conversation.  We enlarged our community not by being willing to embrace the uncharted new world of social media but by taking advantage of a new source of business intelligence that informed us about what was on the minds of our audience.  And so we grew in relevance.  A good thing that created lots of benefits for the organization.

Does social media pose organizational risks?  Absolutely!  But to ignore those in-the-moment opportunities to engage a new or current customer, save a former customer, support an employee or just see a new way of thinking about your products or service puts your organization at a competitive disadvantage.

So go ahead and put together your LinkedIn profile and begin to populate a BeKnown network on FaceBook.  But be open to the richness of data available throughout the social web – and don’t just rely on your PR and marketing teams to report their findings to you.  It means so much more when you engage yourself!

China will be speaking at Talent Net Live on July 29 in San Antonio, TX.  Her track, Is Engagement the Antidote for Turnover?…Well, Maybe promises to be a lively session in which she’ll listen a lot!

Advertisement

8 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Two Sides of the Conference Coin

I had the great good fortune to attend two HR conferences last week:  HRevolution in Atlanta and Bersin & Associates’ IMPACT: the Business of Talent in St. Petersburg, Florida.  HRevolution was a one-day conference; IMPACT was a two and-a-half day conference.

IMPACT was about introducing new research focused on HR effectiveness; HRevolution was focused on discussing HR’s opportunities to transform itself.  IMPACT is a traditional conference; HRevolution is an unconference.  And both were outstanding.

130 activist HR professionals descended on Atlanta on Friday afternoon.  This was the third HRevolution unconference organized by Trish McFarlane, Ben Eubanks, Steve Boese and Crystal Peterson, a team who wanted to provide an alternate HR conference experience to those who couldn’t afford the big ticket conferences and who wanted a community energizing experience to kick-start their learning.  The HR activists who attended this week came from all over the world, from all walks of HR life and who were bound together by the relationships they have created on the social web.  Yes, there were tweeters, bloggers, FaceBookers, LinkedIners: all manner of social web inhabitants.  All there to solidify their relationships in person and take their online discussions to a deeper level.

While billed as an unconference, HRevolution was more of a highly-participative structured conference.  An opening keynote by Liz Gottung, CHRO of Kimberly Clark started the day with a frank overview of HR’s opportunities and goals in a legacy-burdened, paternalistic culture.  Her candor about her leadership challenges was motivating to the attendees who then made their way to a series of breakout discussions on topics like “If HR is so bad, what you doing about it?” “Pop Culture, Politics, and HR”, “Diversity and Inclusion = Innovation in the 21st Century” and “Designing HR for Influence.”

Few of these sessions used PowerPoints and session leaders – discussion leaders, really – expected  attendees to jump in to the discussions at hand.  And they did!  It was fun to sit with Courtesy of Monster30 or 40 other knowledgeable HR-related folks and debate topics like “If a high EQ is so desired in leaders why do such a high proportion of CEOs have low EQ scores?” and “what is influence and how can HR professionals develop more of it?” and “why do we insist on creating activity-controlling policies for flexible workers when we should be focusing on measuring outcomes?” and, well, you get the point.

One particularly engaging session, “HR Slam,”  broke the attendees into groups and asked them to solve an actual business problem provided by the session leaders.  A small, family-owned chain of restaurants is experiencing sudden and unexpected turnover in its small group of managers and asked for suggestions on how to move through their crisis.  The group with the most compelling and complete set of recommendations won $50 gift cards, so the competitive juices were flowing.  The restaurant chain owners ought to pay attention to the advice that was generated:  it was remarkable.

The toughest criticism I heard all day was that there were too many great sessions led by too many great leaders to pick which sessions to attend.  I felt the same way.

At the end of the day, HRevolution was a success because it was flawlessly planned and executed, the attendees came to play, the session leaders engaged with their attendees, and a spirit of camaraderie pervaded the space.

IMPACT introduced several new Bersin & Associates research reports by its analysts, all deeply knowledgeable and engaging speakers.  The research overviews were impressive, presented in actionable bites and gave the attendees just enough information so that the value of the full reports was crystal clear.  Made me want to go home, get on their website and download everything they’ve got.  And I am doing just that.

Additionally, IMPACT featured a number of in-the-trenches HR leaders who shared what was happening in their organizations on such topics as the use of social media in strategic staffing (AT&T, Actuant, Darden), re-building HR as a critical business performance asset (UnitedHealth Group), improving organization effectiveness by creating a robust HR analytics/business intelligence function (Eaton, Accenture), successfully leading organization change (Kaiser Foundation, CA Technologies), and transforming business through learning (SunTrust Bank, Thomson Reuters, The Cheesecake Factory, Teradata Corporation, Cisco Systems).

Sponsors of IMPACT, solution providers, were provided a large Demo Room to set up tables and engage with attendees.  It was a sort of genteel expo, not the usual frenetic tchotchke-laden expo hall.  Quite enjoyable, actually.

I really enjoyed all the built-in opportunities to network with the other attendees.  There were 3 receptions and robustly timed lunches and breaks.  The whole conference experience was designed for 450 senior HR leaders (they sold out and turned away 40+ more!) who don’t need a lot of noise and hoopla to engage, discover and learn.  I did all three.

So.  Two great conferences.  Two great experiences.  Two different audiences (although 3 of us were at both).  I really appreciate that there are many options for HR professionals to come together and learn.  I like seeing the trend of HR professionals reaching out for what they need in new ways – and conference organizers responding with new kinds of experiences.  There truly is something for everyone.

My only complaint?  Sponsors at every conference I’ve attended this year have raffled off IPads.  I haven’t won any of them.

5 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Don’t miss this conference!

IMPACT 2011: The Business of Talent® is almost upon us.  This year’s theme is Building the Borderless Workplace and is organized by my friends at Bersin & Associates, this conference is a must for HR pros and leaders who are interested in learning how to link HR practices and people-driven strategies to business results.  And I wouldn’t miss it!

More than 30 (!) in-the-trenches HR and business leaders will share their experiences and present in-depth case studies including representatives from Accenture, Archer Daniels Midland Company, Caterpillar, Energizer Holdings, Inc., JetBlue Airways, Kelly Services, Lockheed Martin, Scotiabank Group, Starwood Hotels & Resorts and The Cheesecake Factory.  And Bersin analysts will discuss their latest research on innovative approaches to recruiting, effective learning cultures, continuous learning, new models for leadership development, high-impact HR, and much more.  The conference is April 26-28 at the Renaissance Vinoy Resort & Golf Club in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Most interesting to me will be the ability to network with the speakers, the analysts and more than 300 other HR and business leaders attending the conference.

And, for readers of this blog, my friends at Bersin are offering a $100 discount off the already-discounted registration fee of $995 for members and $1295 for non-members!  To reserve a spot, go to http://impact.bersin.com/ and enter the promotional code CHINAG.

Let me know if you’re attending – we can meet up for coffee and compare notes!

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

I Heart Recruiters!

I guess I’m an HR Conference junkie.  Because here I am at my first EREexpo and I’m lovin’ it!  (With apologies to McDonald’s.)

EREexpo is presented by the folks at ERE.net – led by David Manaster.  Because he knows I know HR conferences, he asked me if I had any suggestions for him.  And you know what?  I don’t.  He and his team have done a spectacular job.  I’m going to go out on a limb and say that it’s the best conference – altogether – that I’ve attended in the last 12 months.

Networking:

The nearly 500 attendees are here to engage with the content and each other.  I’ve been to a lot of HR networking events in my time, and these recruiters and talent acquisition leaders know how to network.  At the jam-packed opening reception last night the connections and re-connections being made were a thing of beauty.  These folks came to meet their peers, share the latest in “what works” and help each other be more effective.  Aggressively open and supportive.

Speaker Selection:

I am absolutely impressed with the quality of the keynotes and breakout sessions.  The Keynotes are all practicing recruiting leaders.  Leaders of actual recruiting functions inorganizations.  Practitioners.  Organization leaders.  So their content is full of current examples of what their organizations are really doing in the field. These aren’t sales pitches from consultants or “motivational” stories.  Actual relevant and actionable content by practitioners in the field.

Breakout sessions – only three at a time – are also nearly all led by practicing recruiting leaders.  The consultants who are presenting are true thought leaders.

Social Media:

I am thrilled to see that all the keynotes and one session per breakout time is being live streamed for any interested viewer.  Free.  As in no cost.  How’s that for using the power of social media to strengthen a community and drive stickiness to a brand?  During coffee breaks the great Steve Boese from HR Happy Hour is streaming live interviews with speakers and other notable attendees to keep the content flowing between sessions.  A truly brilliant move on ERE’s part – and not just because I was one of the interviews.

Awards:

This really caught my attention.  The ERE Recruiting Excellence Awards presentation took a 90 minute keynote slot.  There were 8 categories and representatives from the top 2 finalist organizations in each category were on the stage.  That’s 16 people sitting on the stage.  The winners and 1st runners up were announced live very attractive trophies were presented.  So far pretty normal.

Then the magic started.  The chair from last year’s conference moderated the winners and the audience in a panel Q&A/discussion session that let the audience look under the hood of the winning organizations’ strategies and tactics from the people who led the innovations.  I’ve never seen such engagement between a panel and an audience.  There were more questions than than time to answer.  (Of significant interest to the audience were the successes with putting wounded warriors to work at some very impressive organizations)  It was a very powerful session.

Venue/logistics:

The Manchester Grand Hyatt in San Diego is a stellar conference property.  The conference rooms are set up classroom style with table covers – a very nice touch.  Very comfortable and accessible.  ERE sprang for complimentary WiFi throughout the venue for attendees – a meaningful differentiator.  Other conference organizers should note that feature.  The food is pretty good, the staff is extremely accommodating and the sleeping rooms are lovely.

What else can I tell you?  This conference is the complete package.  Excellent content from current practitioner/leaders, excellent social media approach, excellent execution on the logistics.

The most impressive things about this conference, though, are the attendees.

recruiters.

9 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

TRU London: Here I Come!

I wrote a lot about HR conferences last year because I spoke at a lot of them.  And because some of them are changing their approaches to engaging their target audiences.  And because I learn a lot at HR conferences.  And because people who attend HR conferences are among the best in the profession.  And they’re fun.

I’m pretty excited that my 2011 HR conference experience is starting next month in London at TRU London 3.  Did I mention it is in London, my favorite city in the world?  Bill Boorman, founder of the TRU unconference movement, invited me to be a track leader as well as to lead a master class prior to the start of the event. 

While I’ve been a speaker at HR conferences that bent the rules (see my post on RecruitFest! last fall), I’ve never actually participated in a true (no pun intended) unconference.  So I’m really looking forward to this. 

I’m not sure what to expect as a track leader, but I’m gearing up for great discussions, divergent points of view, a truly global perspective, and the chance to hear from people way smarter than me about the latest approaches to recruiting.

My master class is going to be focused on tying engagement to recruitment.  In Turning Back the Tidal Wave of Turnover I’ll provide some of the most recent engagement data from leading organizations like Gallup and BlessingWhite and lead a discussion about what the data means as organizations start losing employees to the improving economy and start hiring again. 

I expect to learn a lot from that discussion as well as from the interactions with a great group of track leaders that include thought leaders like Craig Fisher, John Sumser, Laurie Ruettimann, Glen Cathey, and many more big thinkers whom I have not yet met.  Here’s the website to check out the other leaders.

So here’s the deal:  join us in London February 16-18 for TRU London 3.  Sign up here and make your reservations today.  I can’t imagine a better spot to be in the middle of February – or a better group of people with which to learn. 

And did I mention that it is in London?

4 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

How to open an HR conference!

 I’m that voice that’s been saying “Really? Movie stars as keynoters at HR conferences?  Really?  How’s this going to help me be a more strategic business leader?” 

 While I was at SHRM I was successful in influencing the team to select more keynoters who had real connections to business and HR success.  Business thought leaders like Jack Welch, Anne Mulcahy, Ted Childs, John Kotter and Steve Forbes.  I’ve never understood the fascination with movie and tv stars as keynoters at HR conferences – other than everyone loves movie and tv stars.  I’ve held the position that HR conferences should bring relevant business content from real thought leaders to the attendees.  So when I saw that HR Southwest’s opening keynote was a two person comedy/juggling act, I thought, “Oh brother.  Here we go…”

 But here’s the thing:  they were fabulous!  Let me paint the picture.  We’re in Fort Worth.  It was 8:15 on Monday morning.  It was Columbus Day — a holiday in many workplaces.  Both the Rangers and the Cowboys had played at home the day before – and lost.  And it’s a commuter conference (a large majority of the 2,000+ attendees drive to the conference each day from home).  So to describe the energy in the room as the session opened as lethargic would be understating the case. 

And then The Passing Zone arrived.  Amazing jugglers, smart comedians, these two guys kept the witty patter going through 75 minutes of their act while continuously linking their actions to the HR world.  Trust, cooperation, communication, juggling priorities:  these were cleverly woven into their act in a refreshing, funny and entertaining way.  We were laughing, we were clapping, we were gasping, we were cheering.  The energy was thumping, the good humor was flowing and the conference was off to the races.  Brilliant!

 So I stand corrected.  When planning conference keynoters understand the likely mindset of the audience you are supporting.  And if it’s first thing Monday morning, wake ’em up!  The planners at HR Southwest did just that and came up with a real winner.  Well done!

3 Comments

Filed under HR, HR Conferences, Uncategorized

HR Southwest: the Real Deal

 

Here’s what I love about HR conferences:  the attendees.  I’m a big fan of HR professionals.  I think they’re smart.  I think they know their business.  I think they contribute daily to the success of their organizations.  I think they grab on to learning wherever they can find it.  And I think that today, like no other time before, they are caught between the proverbial rock of a fragile and unpredictable economy and the combined hard places of the current legislative/regulatory agenda, continued globalization and the need, as always, to do more with less.

 So as I attend the SHRM-affiliated HR Southwest Conference in Fort Worth, Texas today through Wednesday, I am again impressed with the way these 2,000+ dedicated HR pros are approaching this ultimate learning experience.  And make no mistake:  HR Southwest is an ultimate learning experience.  The concurrent session line-up is among the best I’ve ever seen.  The keynoters are very strong.  The exhibition hall is incredible.  And the attendees themselves are focused on making the most of the three days before them. 

 I respect the hell out of these folks.  I see a determination in their eyes as they check the conference program to chart their course through the conference.  They’re engaging with the vendors in the exhibition hall and not just collecting swag.  They’re improving their ability to serve their organizations and their communities.  They’re working on expanding both their functional expertise and their strategic leadership abilities.  What they learn here will absolutely make their organizations more competitive. 

 So, kudos to the conference team that produces HR Southwest.  It’s smart; it’s professional; it’s the real deal.  Now.  Don’t you wish you were here?

Leave a comment

Filed under Conferences, HR, HR Conferences, Uncategorized

Re-imagining the Conference Experience

 I speak at a lot of HR-related conferences.  I started this as part of my job responsibilities when I was Chief Operating Officer of SHRM (the Society for Human Resource Management).  Supporting SHRM state conferences by being a keynote speaker was a great part of my job.  It got me (and by extension, SHRM) close to our members in a very personal way and was useful to create stronger relationships and to know what was on the minds of our members. 

 And through my SHRM experience where the very talented Meetings & Conferences department was part of my responsibility, I know a lot about the mechanics of putting on successful conferences for as few as 200 and as many as 20,000 attendees.  While the execution is extremely challenging, the formula for success has been pretty simple:

  1. Contract outstanding and well known keynote speakers that motivate people to attend.  (Typically these folks fly in to speak and fly out after their book signing.  They have almost no personal interaction with the participants.)
  2. Offer a wide range of breakout/concurrent sessions focused on knowledge development and skill building.  (These sessions are led by content experts and experienced practitioners who focus on practical applications in traditional classroom style.  PowerPoint presentations abound.)
  3. Engage a set of high profile corporate sponsors to underwrite the conference so attendee registration fees can be kept low and sponsors’ visibility is high.  (The sponsors are kept at arm’s length so the programmatic content isn’t “tainted” by the commercial nature of that relationship.)
  4. Create multiple networking activities so that people can connect in person and carry those relationships forward.
  5. Select an attractive and affordable city and conference/convention venue.  (The focus is on making the participants comfortable in the physical surroundings.)
  6. Execute a strong plan to market the conference to the universe of potential participants.  (Most conference organizers use traditional marketing methods.  Some have stuck a toe into the social media marketing world; most haven’t figured out how to do that yet.)

 I had the privilege of participating in last week’s RecruitFest! in Boston organized by RecruitingBlogs.com and Monster.  And it’s clear that the effectiveness of this conference has the potential to change how conferences are conceptualized and experienced going forward.  In fact, I might go so far as to say if other conference organizers in the HR space aren’t paying attention to what these folks accomplished, they may well be selling buggy whips next year when they go to market. 

 I have to hand it to Eric Winegardner at Monster and Jason Davis, Miles Jennings and Ashley Saddul at RecruitingBlogs.com for having a startlingly new vision and risking it all to try something substantially different in the world of conferences.  These folks went way beyond “thinking outside the box” and “pushing the edge of the envelope.”  They re-imagined the experience from top to bottom.  Let me give you some examples.

  • There were no keynote presentations or concurrent sessions.  It was a series of important conversations between thought leaders.  Unrehearsed, substantive, sometimes controversial, sometimes argumentative, and always informed and thoughtful, these discussions between two, three, four and five experts explored issues and practices that matter to business leaders and talent management professionals.
  • The thought leaders were asked to participate in the entire day – in fact the day started with each of the 12 of us giving a brief overview of the reasons we were participating and our particular point of view; the day ended with each of the 12 of us sharing what was the most impactful learning we experienced during the conference.  Additionally, each of us participated in one or two of the live discussions and asked questions of our colleagues in the other discussions.  We also were part of the studio audience so we were seated side by side with the live audience throughout the day.
  • There were almost no PowerPoint slides.  Really.  The focus was on having real discussions and exploring different points of view.
  • Participants were encouraged to weigh in and agree/disagree or ask questions.  The comments came from the studio audience where a microphone was available as well as from the remote participants via telephone, Twitter and a chat box on the RecruitFest! Live web site.
  • The focus on the “participant experience” covered both the live attendees and the remote attendees – with an emphasis on the experience of the 3,800+ remote attendees.  The technology employed to ensure a rich remote experience included a 3-camera video team, a web site that offered the live stream, a chat box and question box, and the call in telephone number.
  • The sponsors were all involved in creating the experience.  They suggested speakers, they participated in crafting the discussion agenda, they were in the audience and participated in the Twitter stream and through their blogs.
  • The marketing was almost exclusively conducted through social media:  Twitter, blog posts, FaceBook pages and LinkedIn updates.  In a matter of 2 weeks the number of registered attendees grew from just over 100 to the nearly 3,900 participants (from 38 countries).
  • The venue was more TV studio than conference classroom venue.  The newly re-constructed Paramount Theatre (part of Emerson College) and stage gave the conference a look and feel that felt contemporary and useful and made the live streaming feel natural. 
  • The entire day was recorded and will be shared with anyone who would like to experience this next step in the evolution of conferences.  (Click here to enter your email address so you may receive the url.)

 Although it was a tremendous and exciting experience, it wasn’t a perfect experience.  Clearly the financial model needs some more thought.  And the studio audience could have been engaged even more.  But I have to tell you, after managing conferences, attending conferences, and being a keynote speaker at conferences, this was more fun, more engaging, more interesting, more exciting and more impactful from a learning perspective than any other conference in which I’ve played a part.  And I’ve been involved in a lot of conferences. 

 So again.  Kudos to the Monster and RecruitingBlogs.com organizations for stepping off the precipice into the future.  They’ve created something remarkable.  I can’t wait till the next RecruitFest!

13 Comments

Filed under China Gorman, Conferences, HR Conferences, Social Media, Uncategorized

A Tale of Two Conferences

How lucky can a gal get?  I’m speaking at RecruitFest! on Thursday (October 7) in Boston and attending HR Southwest in Fort Worth the following week (October 10-13).  Two great conferences, two great organizations, two great cities  – all focused on providing up to the minute content for the development of HR professionals.  That’s  5 conference days in 7.  Whew!

First up, RecruitFest! put on my the good folks at Recruiter.com (formerly RecruitingBlogs.com) and Monster.  And they’re cooking up something really new and special.  Here’s the deal:  they’ve collected a group of thought leaders in the Recruiting space to engage in important discussions for the benefit of the attendees.  Stars like

 And here’s the really interesting part:  there will be audience participation – questions from the live audience, questions from those watching the live stream, and questions from those listening in and participating in the Twitter back channel.  Pretty exciting stuff!  If you haven’t signed up, click here to attend in person or virtually.

Next up is HR Southwest, the largest SHRM state conference.  The organizing team is expecting nearly 2,000 live participants at the Fort Worth Convention Center!  That’s big!  That also makes HR Southwest second only to the SHRM Annual Conference in the world of SHRM conferences. 

 I remember in the early ‘90s, when I lived in Dallas and managed the southwest region of a global HR consulting firm, the cornerstone of our marketing plan every year was supporting HR Southwest.  I still have pictures (somewhere) of our booth and the team that staffed it.  We connected with our customers and showed our support for our friends in the HR profession by supporting this important event.  I wouldn’t have dropped this important event from our budget – ever!

 The keynote speakers this year look outstanding:  Ambassador Nancy G. Brinker, founder of Susan G. Komen for the Cure®; Chad Hymas, world-class wheelchair athlete; and Jon Wee and Owen Morse, otherwise known as The Passing Zone.  With more than 110 concurrent sessions and the ability to earn as many as 20.75 recertification credits from the HR Certification Institute, this conference is going to set a new standard for HR conferences.

 I’ll be tweeting at HR Southwest, so be sure to follow the #HRSWC10 hashtag and to follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/ChinaGorman.  See you at the conferences!

1 Comment

Filed under China Gorman, HR, HR Conferences, Social Media, Uncategorized

What’s an unconference like, anyway?

 

I’m really getting jazzed about RecruitFest! in Boston on October 7th and 8th.  RecruitingBlogs.com has put together a track leader line-up that looks outstanding, Monster is the big sponsor, and it’s Beantown!  How much better could it possibly get?

I have a sense of what an unconference is like and I’m eager to experience it for the first time.  I’m expecting lots of smart recruiting and talent management professionals to roll up their sleeves and dig in to some really important topics with energy and passion.  The power of focused, collective experience to generate new ideas can be awesome.  Hope we get some of that going.

 Here’s what I hope we don’t do:  have the same endless and pointless discussions about whether HR is ever going to get a seat at the table (man, I hate that phrase), or whether recruiting should be part of HR. 

 I hope we focus more positively…more hopefully…more meaningfully on what we actually can do differently to impact the performance of our organizations.  I hope we focus on what is in our power to control:  our intentions, our behavior, our risk taking.  Because if all we’re going to do is lament our lack of power and our inability to catch the eye or ear of the CEO we’ll have wasted precious time and energy. 

 I’m interested in having conversations that change behavior, that improve performance and that make us (whoever we are) more powerful.  That will be a great investment of time and energy.  That will be a great unconference. 

 Are you with me?  If so, then you should click here and register right this minute!  Because if you register before the end of the week, you’ll get a discount (use the code “chinagorman”) and you also might win the Monster VIP hotel package!  What a deal. 

I hope you’ll join us, roll up your sleeves and contribute to two days that really could change HR.  Who wouldn’t want to do that?

4 Comments

Filed under Business Success, China Gorman, Culture, Engagement, HR, HR Conferences, Uncategorized