The 2019 SHRM Annual Conference and Exposition is over and life has returned to normal, or a new normal as I would call it. Things cannot, and should not, be the same after this life-changing learning opportunity. The lessons shared and the connections made left attendees as different people. With this in mind, it is far too easy to just return to the same old, same old so the challenge becomes how to springboard off the energy and professional development that was enjoyed. It is important to use the experiences and not merely fall into a familiar routine. This can be accomplished by remembering the following lessons and taking actions as noted:
The power of connection:
Over and over I heard how wonderful it was to be connected with so many amazing HR professionals. The innovative coffee and conversation experience, in the aptly named Connection Zone, showed how simple it is to begin exchanging ideas and best practices when you chat with someone over some caffeine. So, go ahead and invite people to meet you for a cuppa over the next months. Make the time for an in-person meeting and watch the magic happen.
Staying connected via online resources is another great tool. I’ve met many people, who are now friends as well as colleagues, through @SHRMNextchat. I invite you to join in these Twitter conversations which take place every Wednesday at 3:00 p.m. EST. In addition to being an amazing exchange of ideas and information, #Nextchat provides an opportunity to keep in touch with what colleagues are doing and builds a deep sense of community. Listening to podcasts is another way to keep apprised of what others are doing and how to apply these practices into your own work. I highly recommend #HRSocialHour as a way to learn from others and feel linked to the work being accomplished in our profession. Also, what have you done with those business cards you collected? Have you sent out a LinkedIn invitation or an e-mail to the people you met? Ensure you have followed up as you said you would in order to retain these contacts.
The power of compassion
I left #SHRM19 with a stark reminder that in our profession we work hard and deeply care for others. However, do the people we work with know this? In order to elevate our work, we must be willing to open our minds and our hearts each and every day. One of the most moving moments for me was when Blake MyCoskie spoke about his mom kneeling in the dirt and wiping the feet of children before placing the donated TOMS on their feet. He teared up as he shared this story and it was clear how much he was moved by this humble act of genuine caring. The challenge for our profession is to (metaphorically) get down into the dirt (i.e. the messy and complicated situations) and genuinely want to help others. Each and every day we must remind ourselves to be vulnerable enough to do this. If not us, then who will?
Last and certainly not least, compassion for oneself is needed. #SHRM19 reinforced that self-care is required in order to give to others. The challenge now is to take this lesson and apply it. What one or two things can you do differently, in an intentional way, so that you are tending to your own needs in order to better serve others?
As we have left Vegas, in ode to Elvis, let’s not just talk about what we learned over the past days. Let’s ensure that we put these amazing ideas into action!
Originally posted on Double M Training and Consulting blog.