Last week I gave two presentations at the New York State Society for Human Resources Management conference and I met people from all kinds of organizations, all of them hungry to understand how social media is affecting their business. It’s clear that these professionals, like most of us, have a love hate relationship with social media. We love how it connects us to old friends on Facebook and hate trying to keep up with all the new ‘stuff’ that comes out. It’s pretty overwhelming.
Our discussions at the conference went beyond Facebook and Twitter and included a broader set of tools like Yammer, Glassdoor.com, Wikis, video and so much more. Beyond the toolkit, there is the ever important compliance piece of this equation and we covered that as well. You can find the presentation here.
Wherever you work and in almost whatever department, you need to understand the fundamental shift that is occurring and why it is changing the way we work, collaborate, think, relate and engage with stakeholders. Before I went to the conference, I read a post by the former PunkrockHR blogger. She now blogs under the title of http://cynicalgirl.com. I loved this post about kicking HR to the curb. It’s all pretty much common sense but whether you are an HR professional, an employee or a job seeker, I hope you will take a minute to check out the funny way this information is pulled together. We love it, we hate it but we can’t ignore it.
I personally have started 2 businesses and am currently helping another one get cooking right now. While it’s an almost overwhelming amount of work, I enjoy it the challenge of creating something from nothing.
As a SCORE volunteer (part of the Small Business Administration), I meet a lot of wonderful people who have great ideas. Each of them is taking a step towards starting their own business. They are asking for help (by the way it’s free and available to everyone) and researching their idea. I tell them that even if this particular business doesn’t get off the ground, another one just might so keep learning, growing and exploring.
When people find out that I have started businesses or volunteer at SCORE, they inevitably talk about how much fun it must be. They don’t really think about how hard it is to start the business, find the customers, run the business and do the work. While it may sound a bit overwhelming, 20,000 new businesses start every year. I believe that if the United States is going to remain economically strong, we need more and more entrepreneurs to step up.
When I was looking for an image to include with this post, I realized that no photograph of a person or people would work. Entrepreneurs come in every size, shape, age, race, gender, religion and nationality. This is an important challenge and even if you are not inclined to start a business, I ask that you to visit, support, encourage and cheer lead for local entrepreneurs. When picking a restaurant, pick a local restaurant instead of a chain. Eat local food, buy local goods and we’ll all reap the benefits. I’d love to hear from other entrepreneurs. We need to stick together!