Monday, November 28, 2011

SHRM Leadership If You're Going to Go, Go All In

Amy Dillman
If there's one thing I learned at the SHRM Leadership conference last week it's that these people, these wonderful volunteers, don't do anything half way. They're away from work but still check their emails on route to a session and tap their laptops like they're cracking code all while networking, learning and engaging for the betterment of their chapters and for SHRM. They know to take full advantage of the SHRM Leadership opportunity, so they meet, mingle and Tweet. Those from Illinois, even do it in matching red shirts. It's the ultimate show of supreme multi-tasking. It's also the absolute example of dedication.

And SHRM has dedication. Every year, the SHRM Open House continues to be an enjoyable, light-hearted kickoff to the weekend. These guys were ready for us and are ready for Atlanta 2012. There were Coke vs. Pepsi challenges, Atlanta trivia, an HRCI birthday party complete with cupcakes, and We Know Next swag.  Did you get your custom made luggage tag? The best moment, for me personally, was when I ran into those dedicated SHRMies, Lisa Horn and Michael Layman. Have you had either of these two to your chapter? You should. If you didn't go, you missed out. If you did go, and didn't feel a renewed energy and purpose, you still missed out. I would imagine it would be hard to find a SHRM volunteer who wasn't motivated to lead after that night.

But really folks, how can you not get motivated? With an entertaining and enlightening line-up, including my personal favorites RyanEstis, Pam Green and Joe Gerstandt, you have no choice but to get pulled in by their passion (that's for you, Ryan). All fluff and prose aside, there were sessions for everyone and for every purpose. Need guidance to lead your chapter? Check. Looking for ideas for membership development? Check. Want real, concrete methods and instruction on chapter practices? Check. Check. 

Now just so you don't think I'm a complete pom-pom wielding cheerleader, there was room for improvement. I love a good motivator, but the butterflies on the screen were a bit much for me, but that's just me (ask me about that off line). Many of us wanted a good, hands-on development lab for working on our chapter websites. There was no conference wi-fi (thank God for my mi-fi). And yes, there's just never enough time to ask every question and meet every person. Regardless, I am a crusader for the cause and of SHRM. I believe in HR. It's a strong, invaluable component to bottom-line results and of positive employee work life. And yes, it's a necessity to organizational success.

So, drink the SHRM Kool-Aid. Get on board. Learn your craft. Maximize your ability. Share what you know. Volunteer.

If you're going to go, go all in...and introduce yourself to someone in a red shirt.

Amy Dillman - President Elect for the Central Illinois Human Resources Group (Champaign. IL).  You can find Amy on twitter as @RhumbarFan and on LinkedIn.