SHRM Kickball And No Kid Hungry (#SHRMKickBall)


Next week is SHRM Annual, the Super Bowl for HR nerds. Whether this is your first time attending, or you’re a seasoned vet, SHRM is quite an experience. This year, I have the privilege of joining many of my HR colleagues in a charity kickball game to raise money for No Kid Hungry (you can check out the event page here).

The No Kid Hungry campaign connects kids in need with nutritious food and teaches their families how to cook healthy, affordable meals. The campaign also engages the public to make ending childhood hunger a national priority. You can learn more in the video below:

I’ll be proudly representing Team Green (Team Tassel) Sunday evening. The players and audience will skew towards heavy social media users, so there will be plenty of tweets, instagrams, vines and video to share the game events as they unfold. You can follow along on the #SHRMKickball hashtag. 

If you’d like to support our effort, please donate. Every dollar makes a difference.

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Tapping The Collective Intellect of SHRM (#SHRMAdvice)

One of the biggest values of being a member of an organization like SHRM, or any professional network for that matter, is access to the collective wisdom of its membership. SHRM is a massive global organization; with over 250,000 members and 575 affiliated chapters in 140 countries. Think about that for a moment. Amongst its membership, there likely is not a single HR or talent issue that has not been tackled by dozens of members.

How do we, the membership, tap into this collective intellect?

We can look to inspiration from some peer review models like GitHub and Quora. Let’s review how these platforms define themselves.

GitHub: GitHub is the best place to share code with friends, co-workers, classmates, and complete strangers. Over three million people use GitHub to build amazing things together.

Quora: Quora’s mission is to share and grow the world’s knowledge.

Both of these platforms take an open-source approach to sharing knowledge. Millions of users willingly contribute their time and expertise to help their respective peer communities. Imagine if we found a way to harness this spirit within the HR community?

SHRM 2012 HR blogger crew.

SHRM 2012 HR blogger crew.

Technically we already do, but not at scale. We have twitter chats, LinkedIn groups, Facebook pages, Google Plus groups, Slideshare, email lists, etc. We also have many peers in the HR blogger community who freely share their presentations and training materials. All of these channels provide value to the bettering of our field. The shortcomings are that the value is incremental, hard to find, and often times shared between the same peer networks – and not reaching those in our community who would benefit the most from this information.

How do we get this collective intellect to more people?

It doesn’t to be a high-tech custom-built platform like Quora or GitHub, though the investment by SHRM could pay big dividends and lead to a member-contributed resource center (hint, hint). It could be as simple as a hashtag. Let’s call it #SHRMQs. Together with SHRM, the HR blogger community can help promote this as a destination to share resources and ask questions. Yes, I realize it would be hosted within Twitter which has  limitations (real-time nature of Twitter, no file saving/tagging capabilities, and lack of familiarity with many in our community). The upside is that is has zero cost so could be implemented immediately, and would be a reason to get more of our HR colleagues participating in social media.

Fistful of Talent live from The Hive at SHRM 2012 (credit: Dice)

Fistful of Talent live from The Hive at SHRM 2012 (credit: Dice)

SHRM has made good strides over the past several years under Curtis Midkiff’s (@SHRMSMG) leadership. The Hive and Smart Bar at SHRM Annual are good illustrations of tapping into the expertise of the HR blogger network. This is valuable for conference attendees, but with full conference schedules and attendance by less than 10% of the membership each year, we’re missing the majority of our members. We also miss out on the opportunity to learn from our peers who may not be active participants in social media.

These are a few ideas. The aim of this post wasn’t to present an absolute solution, but to plant a seed.

If we find a way to truly tap into the SHRM membership’s collective intellect, the value of our membership increases exponentially.

HR, Social Media

SHRM and Social Media, We’ve Come A Long Way Baby.

The post below originally appeared on SHRM’s Buzz site and can be found here.

If you attended this years’ SHRM national conference this year, chances are you’re getting a good sense of the shift to social in the global HR community. Whether you visited a Smart Bar in The Hive to get some one on one social media guidance from one of the many volunteers, sat next to someone feverishly ‘live tweeting’ on the iPad during a session, or tweeted yourself – social was omnipresent at SHRM 12. This is a great thing. Why?

SHRM had a strong turnout this year with over 10,000 attendees. Many more couldn’t attend a particular session (thanks to a great many options) or couldn’t make the conference this year. Most sessions have several attendees live tweeting content, so it can be shared with anyone. Live tweeting is the act of tweeting noteworthy content from a particular conference session using a hashtag (like #SHRM12). Anyone can follow that hashtag and see a collection of tweets on that subject. This gives anyone with a computer or smartphone an opportunity to learn from what’s being shared by the presenter. Continue reading

The Hive Social Media lounge at SHRM12
HR, Recruiting, Talent, Talent Management

I’ve Got Bros In Different Area Codes (the power of networking at #SHRM12)

There are many reasons one might attend SHRM‘s annual conference: the sessions, the spectacle, the ability to interact with 10,000 of your peers from around the world, etc. All of these are valuable justifications for the trip, but the single most valuable reason may be this – connecting with your bros.

Now bear with me a moment. I’m not being gender specific here. Ladies can be bros too. I’m using the term loosely to define friends we accumulate in our space. In today’s connected world where we can easily find, follow, engage, and interact over social media – we have a unique opportunity to expand our networks online before meeting in real-life (IRL for the Twitter folks). When meeting in real-life, the opportunity to turn followers/friends into bros becomes real and lasting. Continue reading


6 Tips To Make Your First SHRM Rock (from SHRM Buzz)

We’re less than a week away from SHRM12. I’m excited to be part of the official blogger/press coverage this year. I aim to capture some of the sessions,  atmosphere, etc to share with my readers here and on the SHRM Buzz site. What’s SHRM Buzz? It’s the brainchild of SHRM’s Social Media guru (I called him that so it’s allowable), Curtis Midkiff. SHRM has really been pushing the envelope around social media engagement under Curt’s leadership and Buzz is another great example. Buzz is a collection of blog posts from fellow HR bloggers and more. They have a great social circles feature where you can plan your networking and learn about other attendees. You can even add suggestions and help pick the music playlist during opening general sessions. Creative, cool, engaged – I really like what SHRM has going on here.

I’m going to be experimenting with some video blogging at SHRM12 to capture some footage from the conference, and possibly some interviews with thought leaders in the talent space. Apologies in advance for the low-budget production value and likely shaky cam as I’ll be recording on my iPhone. Continue reading

Recruiting, Veterans

“I Would Die For You.”

“I would die for you.” Those were the closing remarks of Colonel David Sutherland, former Special Assistant to the Joint Chiefs of Staff and career warrior, as he closed his speech to the RecruitDC attendees last week. For the 300+ of us in the room his words hung in the air and lingered long after he left the stage. He had just given a moving 30 minute speech about the value of hiring veterans and the need for a trinity of support: public, private, government for returning vets. His presentation focused on the Warrior’s Ethos, the foundation of the U.S. Soldier’s creed

  • I will always place the mission first.
  • I will never accept defeat.
  • I will never quit. 
  • I will never leave a fallen comrade.

He shared personal anecdotes and stories for each of these four values. Stories that illustrated the bravery, heroism, commitment and drive these soldiers possessed.  Stories of sacrifice that moved many attendees to tears. In his white paper, Sea of Goodwill: Matching The Donor To The Need, he lays out a plan to link public, private, and governmental support for service members. Col Sutherland was one of the most memorable presenters I’ve seen firsthand. Continue reading