Thursday, February 18, 2010

Sharpening the Axe

I love attending conferences!

As a recruiter who works across industries, functions, levels and geographies, attending different conferences/seminars/workshops/talks have immensely helped me:

-get a decent insight into the various dynamics of the specific business domain, and help sensitise myself regarding the stakeholders thereof;

-keep myself updated and informed about the contemporary issues -enough to provoke some thoughts as I engage with professionals at length later ;

-enlightened by the capsuled dosages of the experts sharing their knowledge and the wealth of experiences -mostly so while interacting in the interactive Q&A sessions;

-an opportunity to catch up and stay connected with a bunch of acquaintances under one roof, and the networking opportunities they often throw up -given the captive influence;

-get updated about the present /future stars in the changing world-and make a mental list of ‘passive talent’ whom I should be tracking for a possible placement !

-and yes, it gives me a break from becoming a slave of the possible daily monotony of operations!

Yesterday, I was fortunate to be at the ITsAP Annual Seminar 2010 –and be part of the deliberations, discussions and soak in as much of the energy as possible.

We had a galaxy of stalwart speakers, sharing their thoughts on the "Value of HR-2010 and beyond", in a very interesting mix of their delivery! A film, a panel discussion of leaders from industry, and a case study provoking the grey cells of the gathering, apart from brief attempt to quizzing during the filler time!

Of course we had the usual servings of cliches’, platitudes, and humorous anecdotes, apart from a quick round up of the latest jargon in the global corporate circuit. Here are some of the notes I picked up- for posterity:

-some compelling trends from the SHRM survey ( Recession & its impact on strategy, social networking, work life balance, measuring effectiveness, top hiring trends keeping in sync with the changing workforce..)

-Changing mindset of the employees, reducing age of affluent employment , and the need for loyalty to a function or business (distinct from an entity or company earlier as more M&A happen!) necessitating the need for a new ecosystem for the changing expectations from all stakeholders.

-Increasing need to being business driven, and customer focused-HR as a profession is being challenged to upgrade themselves -and focus on talent management and culture building -as the non =strategic tasks are being outsourced!

-With the emergence of a 'Velcro organisation' and remote location manpower, across geographies and cultures/practices, a lot of competencies are becoming redundant with time.

-Managing employee aspirations, sensitivity to career influencers, reminders to 'make more deposits than withdrawals' were exhorted.

However, as I reflect back on the days takeaways, I do feel a little disconcerted.

a)For a flagship event of a growing organisation that has at least 300 members in town, one would have expected a lot more than attendees-that at any time of the day did not exceed 100!!

b) While almost half the attendees were ladies, it was a little surprising that only one among them was on the dais as a speaker-a foreigner at that!

c)But the moment of truth was a question, sought by a production person-‘ Why is HR needed?"

Yes, as a speaker paraphrased "even change is changing". Are we?

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