We have all been to conferences. We sit and listen to people pontificate about their specialist subject, often with the ‘aid’ of a long deck of PowerPoint slides. We sometimes rush from one room to the next in search of enlightenment or information on the latest craze. Sometimes we have a night or two in a hotel at our company’s expense (if we work for a company), and sometimes we come away hungover, but full of good intentions. Often, the good intentions disappear as soon as we get back to work and the horrible reality dawns on us: If we are going to put into practice what we learned at the conference we are going to have to be the change that we want to see in the world, to paraphrase Gandhi. Amd that means sticking our head above the corporate parapet. Hmmmm….maybe we’ll leave that until tomorrow. Trouble is, tomorrow never comes!
That’s why I was delighted when I came across a group of people that call themselves Connecting HR. These people are united in a common purpose. They genuinely want to help each other to create better workplaces, not by doing more of the same, but by doing things better, differently. When I went to my first Connecting HR tweet-up (that’s right, a lot of us blog quite a bit and tweet too) I was welcomed and made to feel part of things very quickly. Not surprisingly, I went back, and am building relationships with the Connecting HR community.
A few weeks ago, I volunteered to be part of the team organising the 2013 Connecting HR Unconference. I thought it sounded like an exciting thing to do. So what is an unconference? Well, it’s about as different from a conference as you can get. There are no sponsors, no seminars, no egos, just a bunch of conversations going on all day, which people are able to join or leave at any time. There will be no sales pitches, although there may be a few people who get up and deliver short speeches about something they’re passionate about. I’m really looking forward to it – it’s in London on 21 June 2013 and you can find out more and book here.