Yeah, I know it’s Sunday and I normally don’t post on a Sunday, but I’m at the annual SHRM National Conference in Las Vegas and it starts today. The opening keynote speaker is Coach K, the Duke University head basketball coach. I’m not a big fan. His team beats my team way too often! So, he’ll be painful to listen to as I remember each defeat.
The SHRM expo floor also opens today with a big reception. The SHRM expo is hard to describe. Part flee market. Part carnival. Part car show. All HR and Talent. Everyone who ever wants to sell stuff to HR is here. They hand out pens, stress balls, mints, hand sanitizer, t shirts, frisbees, candy, basically, anything to get you to stop and talk to them.
My favorite free stuff that vendors give out is information! You see, all of these vendors have clients that actually pay these vendors money to use their products and services. These vendors know what others are doing to be successful. If you take a few minutes they’ll gladly share the secret sauce recipes of all kinds of organizations!
We all want secret sauce recipes!
It’s probably the greatest weakness of HR and Talent Acquisition, in general, from industry to industry, is we suck at getting competitive data on what other organizations are doing in their HR and Talent shops. We don’t network with our competition. We think if we share what we are doing, we’re somehow sharing national secrets. So, we fumble around through life, trying to figure it all out on our own.
That is why I spend most of my time at SHRM meeting with vendors. I treat them like normal people, and they in turn give me great insight to what is working and not working in the world of HR and Talent. I get smarter. I learn what I can take back to my own shop. I gain some understanding of what the best organizations are doing that is successful. That’s valuable!
I don’t really care what Coach K does to cheat his way to national titles and stealing recruits. What I care about is being on the cutting edge of what the best companies are doing to gain an advantage with their employees and getting the best talent.
Check me out on Pericope, where I’ll be live streaming during the conference!
*image credit to Gaping Void.