This morning I conducted a webinar for which nearly 700 people from 5 continents, registered. The topic was Why Human Resources Is Not in the Boardroom and How to Get There. My remarks are not just germane to HR. They can be applied to IT, Finance, Risk, etc, and the topic never fails to generate interest. This proves a couple of important points:
1. Organizations have much in common and professionals in them face a common and predictable set of circumstances. The notion that only specialists can offer value is ludicrous.
2. Technology enables global learning communities. It is possible to have an exchange (not a relationship but an dialog) with people half way around the world about something of import to a group.
3. There exists, in any profession, a group of people who are so dedicated to learning and growth that they will entertain very direct conversation and contrarian views.
The webinar today is an example of what organizations can do but often don’t.
1. Create high value experiences available to people when, where and how they want to learn and engage.
2. Focus on what people do differently as a result of their developmental experiences. It’s not enough to attend a class, webinar, seminar, workshop or to earn an MBA. What can people do? How are they better?
3. Stop pandering. I told the organizers of this event that they didn’t want me to do it because I was going to tell the participants things they would not like. To their credit, they said “good, that’s exactly what we need.”
Delivering value that is focused on genuine need and helping people do something differently right away separates the truly useful from an exercise. Which are you doing?