(For all you HR pros and HCM vendors out there sweating your socks off in Atlanta this week, this one's for you!)
For a multitude of reasons (most of them legitimate), I did not make the trip to the SHRM Annual Conference and Exposition this year. So I'll just have to live vicariously through the likes of Steve Browne, Ben Eubanks, Charlie Judy, Jason Lauritsen, the Fistful of Talent crew, The Starr Conspiracy and many others. I'll be dialed into the #SHRM12 hashtag most of the week, keeping up with the action on the Twitter back channel.
To be truthful, I've never attended a SHRM Annual Conference and Exposition.
(pause for effect)
You read that right. I've been an HR pro for more than 15 years now and I've never attended a national SHRM conference. About now, I'm hoping the HRCI isn't going to come track me down and make me forfeit my SPHR certification. Quite frankly, I've never really wanted to attend the national SHRM conference. I've been a dues-paying, card-carrying SHRM member for the better part of my HR career, but I never felt the urge to attend the conference. Maybe it was the size (did I hear 15,000 are expected to attend?). Maybe it was the timing (early summer typically). I don't know, but I've never felt compelled to make the pilgrimage. Until now...
Over the last year, as I've become more active on Twitter, attended smaller HR conferences like TLNT's Transform, and started blogging myself, I feel more "connected" to my HR brothers and sisters more than ever. I can now appreciate the value in spending several days immersed in the profession, sharing thoughts and ideas with HR pros from all over the country, making new connections and hanging out with old friends. I've never felt as in touch with the collective HR community as I do now. So next year's annual conference is in Chicago, one of my favorite cities. I've got it marked on my calendar with every intention on attending.
For those of you about to rock at SHRM 2012, I salute you! Now nothing says HR, talent management, sweat, humidity and throngs of people quite like AC/DC. Enjoy the video. I have to believe that conference hall must have looked something like this when Dr. Condoleezza Rice took the stage today.