BEN MARTINEZ
Relax. Look Around. Take Action.
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Middle Of America

This past week I took a sidestream to somewhere in the middle of America, Omaha.  I participated in an experience with about 50 other HR leaders to re-imagine HR.  The experience was lead by @JoeGerstandt and @JasonLauritsen and took place in old art warehouse in downtown Omaha.  It was an opportunity to build my network and get personal with unfamiliar faces from new places.

One of the things I enjoyed about this conference is that it was not filled with the catty social media groupies and junkies who seem to pollute the big mainstream conference experience.  We were there to learn, not become more famous. Probably not appealing to some of the mainstream conference people.  People were there to kick ass, not kiss ass.  No fancy titles or corporate powerpoint presentations.  In fact, no powerpoints were allowed.  My type of scene.

Each of us was pushing and pulling one another to develop ideas and make our ecosystem better.  It was disruption with a cause.  So much is being said about how sad the profession of HR is, but little is being done, seen or experienced to change it.  This type of experience in the middle of America will change it.  I know that because each person walked away with a personal accountability to do something different, the next day.  No approvals needed.  Own it and make it happen.  My mind is on fire right now.

The middle of America is not Chicago, Las Vegas, New York City or San Francisco.  But yet, people traveled from Alaska to Vermont to Texas to Chicago to San Francisco to be there.  They came to have a say in their future.  That is one of the reasons, I came.  I look forward to my future in the profession and it is my honor to have you as a connection in my life.  With many of you, we need to make our connection deeper.  I plan to do that over time, but only if you are up for it.  I look forward to creating our profession, not just working in it.

Have a wonderful Memorial weekend where ever you are.  I am now in Boston with family and will be moving to Utah with my family next week.  The middle of America is a great place.  Go check out Omaha sometime too.  Take a sidestream and see what you learn.