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Paid Time Off and Flexible Work for the 21st Century #SHRM17


At the SHRM Annual Conference there is a lot going on.  You can see most of it right in front of you. The sessions, the exhibit hall, the SHRM Store and the like.  But what you may not know, because you don’t see it is this. Pretty much every day the SHRM Government Affair’s team is working to represent our collective business interest in Washington D.C.

SHRM has a staff of 12 people in the government  affairs department who work with Congress and many of the federal agencies (and even in...


It’s Time!

It’s the time of year that some of my colleagues affectionately call HR Christmas.

This year, over 16,000 HR professionals are descending on New Orleans for the SHRM Annual Conference. This event brings folks from around the world together to learn, network, and yes, party, each year.

While I’ve only been in town for about 18 hours, I’ve connected with old friends at an intimate dinner for 17 with good food, met several first time attendees to share advice, and found a delightful place to stay and refresh as my introverted...


Why Are You Keeping Your Team Off Social Media?

How often do we hear that HR doesn’t get a seat at the table, or that they aren’t seen as adding value at an executive level?

Whilst this argument was a lot more prevalent a few years ago, the topic of conversation is still around today. As I’m sitting in the SHRM17 pre-conference session about Social Solutions for HR, Sue-Ellen Watts provoked the thought that perhaps HR isn’t being invited because they aren’t bringing anything new.

As HR professionals, we focus a lot on engaging our staff, but if we want...


The Coolest Thing at #SHRM17 Isn’t Digital

I know – heresy, right? Digital is supposed to be the new black – or is it the new orange – or maybe purple (check the SHRM conference logo.) Either way, all the cool kids in HR are telling us that the future of HR is all about technology and big, big, data.

Since it’s only the second day of the show I’ve not been able to do the big dive into “booth world” yet, but I did a cursory walk-through after it opened Sunday night and I found something unexpected and interesting. And it isn’t digital. It is a...


Education as a Benefit at #SHRM17


This morning I had the pleasure of taking a few minutes to sit down with Rachel Carlson, CEO and Co-Founder of Guild Education and one of her colleagues Zach Rowe. I was interested in knowing more about what Guild Education has going on and what the Guild sponsored session Beyond Starbucks/ASU: The Future of Education Benefits  has in store for us Tuesday morning at 7am!

Education as a benefit could be very valuable in a hiring environment that screams skills gap and talent shortage every day. Without getting into the numbers we can...


Live From #SHRM17 - Day Two

It was a wildly informative and highly engaged day here in New Orleans as the Convention Center was buzzing early and stayed open late!
HR Pros had the opportunity to take in speaking engagements from the industry's best and check out the latest in HR Products/Services while rubbing elbows with the World Leaders in Human Resources.
Here are just a few things we learned:
Laszlo Bock has no shortage of Fans in HR and for good reason. He shared his experience growing Google into a People Company as their CPO while adding stories...

Influence and a Culture of Innovation – #SHRM 17


The 2017 Society for Human Resource Management Annual Conference and Expo is well underway.  This year’s edition in New Orleans, LA boasts the second largest in history from an attendance perspective with well over 17,000 attendees from across the country and world. 

The first two keynote speakers can claim one thing in common that makes them particularly relatable to the audience; they both spent time in senior level HR leadership positions.  Kat Cole, President of Focus Brands (you know them as the parent of Cinnabon, Aunt Annies, Moe’s, and other yumminess)...


#Hustlemuscle at #SHRM17


Kat Cole is a very humble individual who has grown into her leadership position in a very ordinary way. Her experience has shaped her to the wonderful leader she is today. Kat spoke about her first job at Hooters and the HR experience she gained to make herself an asset to the company as well as open opportunities for her future. With the many mistakes Kat Cole has made in her life, she has continued to be successful and is currently the president of Cinnabon. She inherited Cinnabon when it was in disarray and she was able to build...


Take a Chance on Talent



The Monday of any SHRM conference is usually jammed packed and high energy. It’s the first full day of sessions. People are excited to check out the sessions they mapped out for the day, and they aren’t yet exhausted from talking to the 18,000 attendees at #SHRM17.

One of the themes I noticed in the sessions I attended – whether it was Laszlo Bock’s general session or Jennifer McClure’s excellent session on disrupting HR – centered around taking a chance on talent. They challenged HR to stop putting...


Our New International Language is Here #SHRM17



Sitting in the largest global HR conference in the world and it was silent.

Well over 15,000 people in a huge auditorium and the room was silent.

No music, no Emcee, no entertainment or photo’s on the screen, but total silence.

What was holding the full attention of every person?

Then there were a few giggles.

Some chuckling and even some belly laughs out of the darkness  

What was going on?

I was tweeting and looking down, there must be someone on the stage or a video with no...