Tag: being human

First-Timer at #WorkHuman

I was finally able to attend WorkHuman Live this year thanks to my new employer. After pining over it for the past three years, I kept pinching myself up until I was on a plane to Nashville to make sure it was real.

I always get plenty out of any HR conference/seminar – employment law updates, insights on leadership, FMLA tips, standard things I think many folks in our industry look at as the most important . They’re not entirely wrong.

But I’m in HR because the human aspect is where I’m completely invested. I don’t go home at night thinking about whether or not we’re meeting ACA guidelines. Slow down. I do those things in the office because they have to be done. I go home thinking about whether or not the policy we’re about to roll out is easy to understand, fair for as many people as possible, and is something I’ll be proud to stand behind. I sit in traffic and wonder if we’re trusting our employees enough or if we’re giving our managers the right tools to be the best leaders they can.

I’ve just always been a big fan of bringing humanity to the workplace and that’s what WorkHuman lives and breathes. I’d heard the hype about these conferences and the keynote speakers over the past few years had been enough to get anyone excited about going. I was slightly concerned it might be one of those Kool-Aid drinking situations, but I was fully prepared to guzzle that juice right on down.

When I first got to the convention center/humongous hotel the conference was taking place, I wandered around a bit because my room wasn’t ready yet. One of the very first pieces of WorkHuman signage I ran into was a giant banner that said, “You belong here.” I was hoping that would be true, more like a rarity for me at most HR conferences.

The people that attend WorkHuman are my people. They get we have to believe in humans and they want to believe in humans.

It didn’t take long for me to realize that, yeah, I did belong there.

It’s Been 4 Months

It’s been four months since I’ve hit the publish button here. There are at least half a dozen posts sitting in draft status and approximately 45,338 ideas floating around in my head. Not an exaggeration.

In those last four months, a lot has happened. A lot, a lot. You get bullet points, because despite what some may choose to believe it hasn’t all been shared via social media and isn’t always covered in rainbow tinted glitter. But it’s real life and I’m all about real life.

  • I dove head first into a grassroots groundswell of activism led by an amazing group of intelligent and passionate women driven towards change in our community. I’ve never felt so empowered. I also announced my intent to run for West St. Paul City Council. (You can watch the video clip here and visit my campaign site here.) I didn’t know one of the perks of being a local politician would be getting to know so many amazing people and building true friendships with them.
  • I didn’t get to go to #SHRM18. It was ultimately my decision, but looking back, definitely one I regret even though it seemed like the right choice at the time.
  • We went to Des Moines to see Hamilton. It was life changing and I don’t care how cliche that sounds. I want to see it over and over.
  • My wife got pneumonia and was out of work for three weeks. The whole family passed around mystery viruses for a good week during that time.
  • My grandma was given a month to live. We drove to Missouri to see her while she was still well enough to see us and we could still talk. It was a beautiful visit. She died less than a week after we got back. We went back for her funeral. She was 92, but when you lose one of the most amazing pillars of your life, it doesn’t matter how old she is. I think of her daily and I always will.
  • Won my primary election. In a big way. On to the general election in November!
  • Accepted a job offer. It was easy to accept. I had a really positive feeling about it during the whole interview process and can’t wait to start in a few weeks.

And that’s my last four months in a nutshell. Is it all HR related? Nope. But it’s human related and that’s what matters to me.