This weekend, I’ll be attending, and participating in, the Illinois SHRM state conference. This will be my 6th straight conference and it’s one of my favorite. While I have attended many HR conferences, including a few SHRM National conferences, the IL SHRM state conference is the most meaningful to me.
I first attended ILSHRM in 2012 because I wanted to get involved and network with many of the local HR professionals. I had a chance to get to know some of them via social media and this was my chance to meet them IRL. At the conference, I finally met Sabrina Baker. She was going to be the conference director for 2013 and I asked if I could help out. And if you know Sabrina, you know what happened next. I was assigned the task of putting together the Monday evening social event and asked to introduce one of the keynote speakers.
For that event, Sabrina lost her voice and I ended up taking on the emcee duties for the whole conference. Fast forward to today and this will be my 5th conference serving as the emcee. I will also be co-facilitating the pre-conference workshop with my good friend, Mary Faulkner. And because I didn’t have enough to do, I’m doing a concurrent session on Monday. Whew!
This weekend starts a 6 week stretch of a lot of professional and personal events. When I started the year, I set a few goals. One, to run 1000 miles, and two, to start a blog and book a few speaking engagements. Well, I’m about 90 percent complete on the running goal. You’re reading this so the blog is happening. And the speaking gigs start this weekend.
I’m not the most organized person and I didn’t exactly pay attention to the calendar when I committed to some engagements. Along with ILSHRM, I will be on a panel at the HR Conference for Legal Professionals. I’ll then take my talents to the Wisconsin SHRM state conference. While this may not seem like a lot, I forgot to factor in real life and my day job. And a half marathon. It will definitely be a test of my patience and anxieties. I’ve had one too many restless nights filled with the panic of taking on too much. The fear of failing and not being able to deliver.
All said though, I’m really looking forward to sharing some new content with my HR colleagues. I’m very excited and equally terrified. I know I’ll be surrounded by a fantastic group of people and I can’t wait to be a part of another fantastic ILSHRM conference.