What’s in it for me?

That’s a question I always myself ask when attending conferences, speakers, concerts, you name it.  What am I going to get out of this?  And what I am going to contribute?  Will it, at the end of the day, make me a better human being? Will I add to someone else’s experience?  We are all more than our jobs and I seek ways to add to life. Not just work.

That’s a tall order for a cool unconference called HRevolution.  Hanging out in Chicago with all kinds of nifty, neat, amazing people was an awful lot of fun.  This was a place people wanted to be. Me too. I learned some things. 

I learned that there are some pretty smart people out there.  People who will talk, share, discuss and collaborate on interesting topics.  
I learned that social intelligence can and should be taught.  Starting say in 1st grade.  
I learned that some people like really high heels.  That’s impressive.
I was happy that I brought my camera.

I spent a session with Jennifer McClure and Lisa Rosendahl facilitating the topic Can HR be trusted? It was an interesting and at times, uncomfortable topic. Everyone in HR wants to be trusted.  We are good people.  We like to think we are.  Most valuable for me was listening to some of my colleagues share stories and feedback about how people have been burned; people who have divulged information; people who are afraid to share specifics about illnesses, people who would go anywhere but HR.  I walked away with a healthy reminder that we are stewards of sensitive and delicate information.  We need to be transparent in our dealings but airtight with the sources. 

There were some curious references to Karl Marx.  I believe that in some situations we can ask ourselves, “what would Karl do?” That deserves some time and reverence too.  Because  I don’t know much about Karl Marx.  In all the noise, at the end of it all, I hope I added to the conversation too.  

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