By: Shawna Simcik
Where is HR Today? We had the good fortune recently, during the 2022 Colorado State SHRM Conference, to find out.
At the beginning of October, ICC headed to Keystone, Colorado, to exhibit and participate in the Colorado State Human Resources SHRM (COSHRM) conference. For my out-of-state friends, Keystone Colorado in October is the prime leaf-peeping season. The views did not disappoint, with the Aspen leaves signaling the end of summer as we fade into fall.
For a moment, it was difficult to head into a conference room with the beautiful Colorado scenery, but the conference kicked off on Sunday evening with keynote Reggie Rivers. As a die-hard Broncos fan, I have seen Reggie speak several times, and I jump at the opportunity to see him talk each time. Reggie has a unique way of linking his football career and the game of leadership.
My favorite takeaway came from an audience member near the end of the presentation, “Reggie, what do you do when you just keep getting tackled?” I’m not sure about you, your employees, and your company, but the last two to three years feel like we just keep getting tackled! We are burnt out, tired, and exhausted. And Reggie answered perfectly! Keep going – each yard counts, find ways to celebrate the small wins with your team, and show up and be consistent.
“Keep going – each yard counts; find ways to celebrate the small wins with your team, and show up and be consistent." – Reggie Rivers, Former Denver Bronco
For a day and a half, the conference continued with a dynamic speaker line-up and thoughtful keynote speeches, including Cincinnati’s own – Jennifer McClure and SHRM’s leading man, Johnny C. Taylor. After a few days to recover and catch up on emails, I’m thinking of critical messages that stuck with me.
- Jennifer McClure shared a slide that said, “The workplace will never be normal ever again.” YES! Can we please just stop using the “when it gets back to normal” language? This is our new normal. Let’s embrace it and move on.
- Now is the time for HR! Johnny C. Taylor spoke about now is the time for HR. We’ve been demanding a seat at the table for countless years – 2020 not only brought HR to the table but put a big spotlight on the profession. Your voice is needed, wanted, and warranted, and if you don’t show up – they will replace you. Let’s embrace this time for the People Practice and demonstrate courage and adaptability.
- The employee attitude has changed. This is not generation specific. We must ask ourselves what we are doing to support our employees, gauge their attitudes and embrace change and flexibility.
- Leaders Make a Difference. Research from 100 million employee interviews showed that 70% of the variance between the highest engaged teams and persistently disengaged teams is just the manager. For my stats friends – I would say that it is statistically significant. Great managing is an act of coaching, not one of directing and administrating.
- Diversity doesn’t solve our problems. We’ve been there – done that. Launched diversity programs and hoped that they would solve all the issues. Stop it! We must focus on inclusivity and understanding each other. Then build this into the cloth or cultures of our organizations. We, as human beings, naturally try to find similarities, and yet, our cultures say to show up, be different, and be authentic. Yes, but bring people together and create inclusivity to solve problems.
We must focus on inclusivity and understanding each other. Then build this into the cloth or cultures of our organizations.
Thanks again to the COSHRM Conference and countless volunteers for their commitment to the State and to HR.