Lessons for #HR from the Convention Floor

Posted on September 8, 2012 by Have A Voice Team

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By: Mary Kaylor (@weknownext)

The SHRM Government Affairs and Public Affairs teams took Tampa and Charlotte by storm the past two weeks as they advanced the human resource profession by sponsoring several policy forum events at the 2012 Republican and Democratic National Conventions. The events attracted policymakers and business leaders from around the country and examined issues important to HR like the skills gap, immigration and workplace flexibility.

While political convention schedules provide plenty of partisan revelry, most convention goers are there to work as well. They attend to network, to learn and to build awareness for their company, cause or issue. Access is key. They want access to the convention hall and to the most popular and well-attended events with the smartest and most influential people. They select the events which hold the most promise and the best audience for accomplishing their goals. And of course they want to have fun, too.

Access to these events is organized by a hierarchy of credentials which are worn around the neck like badges of honor — mostly because of the heavy-duty networking it takes to trade and secure them — and for the envy they incite.

Attracting convention attendees to an event is a lot like attracting talented employees to your organization — and organizations should strive to be the “A-Ticket” event.

It’s about building your culture, your brand and your reputation as an employer. Are your employees excited to be a part of your organization and are their friends envious of their “awesome gig?”  Do the most talented job seekers look to your organization as a highly desired destination? A place where they can make talented contributions, work with other smart people, accomplish their goals, and have some fun, too? Would they trade a salary cut, a shorter commute, or a job title just to be there?

When November 6 rolls around, may the best candidate win.  And when it comes time for prospective job candidates to cast their votes, may the best employers win.

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