Saturday, December 17, 2011

A New Look - More White Space

This blog has been in place since July 14, 2010 with our first post.  The concept was to get "some" social media in place before the 2010 Illinois State Conference.  This came right on the heels of the 2010 SHRM National Conference and was really the collective thought of John Jorgensen and Curtis Mikdiff.

Well now that the blog is 10 years old (in dog years) we thought it was time for a little bit of a face-lift, a makeover, a redesign; call it what you will.  We have made some fairly subtle changes, to the layout and design.  While we are using Google Blogger as the platform, there still are a lot of options.  We have tried to keep it simple and go with a lot of so called White Space. I hope this hasn't rocked anyone's world.

Actually, I wonder if anyone would have even noticed.  If you have any comments please feel free to share them of email me Dave Ryan.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Top Ten HR Moments of 2011

There is little doubt which news stories will revisit the airwaves as we recollect and close the year of 2011: the devastating earthquake and tsunami in Japan, the death of Osama Bin Laden and Moammar Gadhafi, the loss of business icon Steve Jobs, the pop-culture take-it-or-leave-it rants of Charlie Sheen, and the shocking shooting and miraculous recovery of Gabrielle Giffords. Maybe our stories pale in comparison, but as HR professionals we've also watched some highlights in the year 2011.

1. NLRB and its battle with big business Boeing. I love a good case study. Maybe it's because I'm in education or that I've always wanted to be a lifelong student, but this is good stuff. I challenge anyone to find an HR or labor relations class that didn't follow this story in 2011, and while it appears to be wrapping up at year's end, it will be a precedent for future labor issues.

2. Wisconsin vs. Public Unions. Who doesn't love a good union battle? Regardless of your position, or mine for that matter, the full assault between Governor Walker and the public unions was dramatic (yes, I'm a nerd). Throw in some teachers, pension plans, a multibillion dollar deficit and a contentious political environment and you were guaranteed to see cardboard-sign wielding protesters on your Capitol's front lawn.

3. SHRM National. Keith Urban labels us as SHRMies. And yes, the networking is phenomenal, the sessions are the best professional development around, the exhibit hall is second-to-none and who can forget the tweet-ups and the monster party hosted by Monster.

4. Occupy.  A stretch, perhaps,if you think occupy is all about business. But yes, I'll make the ever-heard argument that HR is business. Just ask UC Davis Chancellor Linda Katehi who's being pressured to step down from her position because of the way the campus police handled the protesters, and by handled, I mean doused with pepper spray. Employee relations, employee communications and leadership development could have gone a long way to prevent this event. Maybe.

5. The Herman Cain conundrum. It might not have any long-term influence on HR policy and it might not have had a realistic impact on the polls, but you can bet a lot of HR managers were revisiting their sexual harassment policies. And I guarantee more than a handful of businessmen were second guessing their past actions.

6. SHRM Leadership - The case for real HR Leadership? It exists. Tiffany, Steve, Ellen, John, Tara, Kristi and Dave among countless others are proof. Giving back to the profession never felt so good.

7. Penn State. Ethics, leadership, power and oversight of leaders. Did you see Sandusky was denied a volunteer coaching position after background check? This story continues to evolve and will surely have human resource repercussions. Lesson learned.

8. Illinois SHRM State Conference. It might not be everyone's top 10, but with Bryan Wempen, Michael VanDervort, Jessica Merrell, Dwane Lay, Charlie Judy, Geoff Webb, Joan Ginsberg, Josh Rock, Kristi Jones, Susan Avello, Ryan Estis, John Jorgensen... ok, you get the idea... fabulous.

9. To infinity and beyond: the last space shuttle flight.  As a girl who grew up wanting to be the genie in I Dream Of Jeannie, I imagined nothing but astronauts, palm tress and the beach. As an HR gal, I now see the impact of the shuttering of the space program including over 8,000 jobs lost at Kennedy Space Center alone. The impact area extends into the Space Coast with losses at retail, restaurant, tourism and other businesses. I've got this issue on my watch list for strategic planning initiatives for future developments and municipal and industry transitions (don't you just love a good public administration story?).

10. The Recession. Wait, what year is this? Still? Is this a double dip? Call it what you like, analyze it at will, but for many the recession is still here. Unemployment hovered around 9% in many markets and even topped 10% in Illinois. Our economic woes, health care costs, unemployment, underemployment, and debt continue to influence our HR programs and practices.

Way to go, 2011! It's not a Kardashian wedding implosion, but these stories swept me off my feet... and will be a part of my life for more than 72 days.
Amy Dillman - President Elect Central Illinois Human Resource Group
Photo credit  Lake City Community Church

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Vince Caldwell Another SHRM Leadership Story

Vince Caldwell
Those of us who have been to a number of SHRM events notice there is a constant at many of these events.  The constant that I am talking about is the SHRM Bookstore.  You can find them at SHRM National, at SHRM Leadership, at the SHRM Legislative Conference and at  many SHRM State Conferences - and now you can even find the SHRM Bookstore attending NON SHRM events. I know this because I stopped to visit with Vince Caldwell at the Leadership Conference.

Now I have little experience working with Vince as I have helped him set up the bookstore more than once at the Illinois SHRM State Conference and understand that it can be a lengthy and tedious task. Vince along with   Andy Cale are the faces that SHRM members see when we see the SHRM Store.  They bring all of the fine offerings to the shows. I chatted with Vince to learn a little bit more about him and the bookstore.

Vince's official title is SHRM Store Coordinator. He has been with SHRM for 13 years.  The SHRM Store often attends 20 events per year. At every event, most of their merchandise is shipped in from a central distribution point and then returned there after the show/conference.    They had quite a display at the Leadership Conference this year.

As I looked at their display in the Crystal Gateway Marriott ,  I wondered how long it took to set-up.  Vince said this effort was a 10 hour set-up, but it was easy because it was near home - not on the road.  I was curious as to how they decided what materials to bring to each of the various events.  Vince explained to me that that is part of the body of knowledge he has attained over the years. He said different events call for a different flavor of the merchandise they bring to the event.  Vince said very succinctly, the audiences are different.   He did say sometimes it is a challenge and other times they hit the sweet spot on price and product don't have to return ship much of anything.

If you ever talk to Vince you will find that he is soft spoken knowledgeable guy.  He is passionate about his work, but I wanted to know a little more about him.  I asked him what is that people don't know about you?  He told me that he is an avid Toastmaster. He said that he has held every position in the district and competed at every level.  He said is planning to compete in the world competition for public speaking.  He said it is an exciting thought to be competing on the world stage.  Now - there's something I  bet you didn't know about Vince from the SHRM Store.

I wanted to thank Vince for taking the time to speak with me, and wish him luck in any and all upcoming Toastmaster competitions.

-Dave Ryan Director of Social Media ISC SHRM