It is an understatement to say that 2020 was a challenging year for everyone. While the world faced a global pandemic, fear, and uncertainty; so many individuals stepped up to answer the call and face these challenges head-on. This included most importantly our dedicated healthcare workers, heroic first responders, and countless essential workers across so many industries that worked tirelessly to keep our infrastructure and quite frankly, our way of life functioning. We owe these front-line workers a great deal of thanks and gratitude now and always.
Behind the scenes, human resource professionals were assisting their organizations to maintain their own workplace infrastructures and ensure that employees were being supported, ever-changing policies were being interpreted and managed, and workers were being supported with leave benefits and pay. This was a time for everyone to step up in any way that they could, and the HR professional was often looked upon within their workplaces to help navigate through challenges in innovative and strategic ways.
It is only fitting that SHRM's new campaign and the theme for the 2021 SHRM Annual Conference & Expo is “Now More Than Ever.” As organizations are hopefully heading forward with strategic change in a post-pandemic world, HR professionals will be looked upon to possess the knowledge and skills necessary to lead their organizations during these transformational times. The “status quo” is just not good enough in this new environment, so HR professionals will need to have the latest tools and resources that SHRM can provide at the ready.
In a “normal” year, the SHRM Annual Conference & Expo provides attendees with great learning opportunities, exposure to new tools and technology, and professional networking that may be of benefit to them in the future. However, this time, in this year is different because now, more than ever, The Future is NOW.
I hope to join many of my global HR colleagues at the 2021 SHRM Annual Conference & Expo, either in-person in Las Vegas or virtually, to reengage, retool, and reenergize for the challenges of today and tomorrow. While these goals are important every year, this year it is important Now More Than Ever!