Hi stranger! About a year ago, I mentioned that I was leaving HR.
Technically I’m still in HR – I work for EMC’s learning and development organization – but I work as a designer. We’re trying to redesign how people learn at work.
Over the last few months, I’ve had the opportunity to build a mobile learning app that we’ll be beta testing this quarter. We’re using social media to connect new leaders around the globe and help them learn from each others’ experiences. And we’re even trying to flip the classroom learning experience on its head.
If you want to follow my crazy new adventure, come visit me at Go Make Things.
If you just like reading about HR stuff all day, it’s probably not for you. But if you’re into both the strategic and the tactical, the practical and the eclectic, Go Make Things might make a fun addition to regular reading.
Officially, I’m a Senior Social Media Engagement Manager for the Training and Development organization at EMC, the company I’ve been working for over the last three years.
What that means in practical terms is that I’ll be integrating new technologies like social media to further our learning initiatives. I’ll also be marketing those initiatives internally and externally in new and fun ways.
So what happens to Renegade HR?
Not much, actually.
I won’t be writing here anymore (at least not any time in the foreseeable future), but I’m really proud of my body of work on this site, so I’ll be keeping it online indefinitely.
For the last few months I’ve been writing at Go Make Things, my new site about all things awesome. I’d encourage you to follow my adventures there. You can subscribe by RSS or email.
Thank you for reading my ramblings for the last three years. And thanks also to the all of the wonderful people who have supported this site and it’s various side projects.
EMC Global Services has more than 14,000 employees spread all over the globe. Two career questions come up more frequently than any others: What can I do next and how do I get there?
Over the last two years, my role has been to help answer those questions.
The Challenge of a Global Workforce
The global, remote nature of our workforce creates some unique challenges. How do you find job openings, build a network and advance your career when you’re one of just a handful of people in your area?
There are employees at EMC who have quite successfully navigated those challenges. We realized early on that capturing and sharing their stories was important.
One of our first successes was Career TV, video podcast series with a simple concept: Ask some of EMC’s best and brightest employees to share their best career advice in 60-seconds or less, film it, and post it on YouTube.
After doing a series of these videos, we began to notice some common themes and trends. We started compiling insights around common topics into short ebooks. The Career Guide series was born.
All of these tools reside on an internal social network called EMC-ONE. They’ve helped sparked discussions around topics like leadership and continuous learning. They’ve helped people connect, share and learn from each other.
Storytelling as a Job
While the subject matter I’ve worked with has definitely been human resource related, the type of work I do is not strictly HR.
If anything, I’m a professional storyteller. I capture and share employees’ stories. Big picture, I tell a story about learning and development at EMC.
And I’ve come to realize that this is what I like best about my job. Storytelling.
I’ve been giving some thought to what I might do next. Something in our Learning & Development group would be an obvious match. But I also think Marketing might be an interesting way to use the skills I’ve developed.
After all, marketing is storytelling (ideally nonfiction).
So I’m not entirely sure what I’ll be doing next. I know I want to stay at EMC, and I want to help tell stories. Beyond that… I’m still trying to figure it out.
Ben Eubanks from Upstart HR has put together another great ebook. Where Do You Think You’re Going is a simple guide to employee retention featuring ideas and insights from some awesome HR pros. I’m in there too.
On the way to work the other day, the Wallflowers song “Fifth Avenue Heartache” came on the radio.
I started wondering what happened to them, and then remember that Jakob Dylan, the lead singer, was the son of the Bob Dylan. And oddly, thinking of Bob Dylan made me remember the 1998 Soy Bomb incident.
During his 1998 Grammy performance, artist Michael Portnoy rushed on stage shirtless with the words “SOY BOMB” painted on his chest. When asked about it, he explained:
“Soy… represents dense nutritional life. Bomb is, obviously, an explosive destructive force. So, soy bomb is what I think art should be: dense, transformational, explosive life.
We need more crazy artists in the workforce. More people willing to run on stage with the words soy bomb written on themselves (figuratively, of course). People willing to shake things up and challenge the status quo.