We all get calls. Lots of calls. Same old products, same old services. And yet somehow every one of these products and services is “innovative” and “serves your unique needs in astounding and special ways.”
We all read articles. Lot of articles. Same old people, same old story. And yet somehow every one of them has “redefined recruiting” or “changed HR” and “is truly leading pioneering work in talent.”
And then we meet people. A lot of people. New and exciting people. They really are innovating. They really are redefining the field of talent. Not the popular kids. These are the people in the chess club instead of the football field. They aren’t using the same old product or service, and they aren’t the same old people. They are tired of the same old ideas being sold as “new and innovative.” They get a thrill out of challenging the status quo. They live to create exciting new ways to transform the field of talent. Many times they aren’t in recruiting or HR but have a real passion around talent because the understand that it really is a game changer. They translate talent innovation into amazing business results.
I think it is time for these new people to teach and learn. It is time for an unconference.
On January 25 Electronic Arts is going to open its doors to those who can teach and learn about innovations in talent. I am calling this “Talent Unconference” or Taluncon for short. The ground rules are simple but absolutely unbendable. If you would like to show up on January 25 you have to do three things:
- Clearly define what you want to learn about how to attract, locate, connect with, work with, leverage the value of, measure the value of and / or reward talent. It has to be something that you have tried to learn somewhere else and weren’t able to because it just isn’t talked about, and it has to be something that has some connection to “business” (P&L).
- Clearly define what you can teach about how to attract, locate, connect with, work with, leverage the value of, measure the value of and / or reward talent. It has to be something that you can’t find a lecture or speech about anywhere else. And it has to be “innovative.” How do you know if it is innovative? Go to the next step.
- Write me an email telling me about those two things (see last line of article for details).
Susan Burns will be teaching and learning about Talent-centric strategy (turning workforce planning on its head) and how that can be used to impact your business. Then there is Linda Glass, Dave Lefkow, Cindy Haugh, Sean Rehder, Kristi Cavanaugh and Nancy Gray-Starkebaum. They are going to be teaching and learning too. I am going to be teaching and learning about how radical shifts in user-centric talent technologies enable operational efficiencies and increased innovation. I am also going to get someone there to talk about the talent implications of connected digital entertainment: with people spending more time on video games than on any other form of media-based entertainment, maybe it’s time to start thinking about building your brand through video games.
There are other people who have said they will be there, but I’ll wait to announce more attendees until I get some initial emails (or maybe just a blank inbox – see below).
Notice the lack of titles and company affiliation in the list in the previous paragraph. When you attend this unconference you are attending as an individual, not as a company and not as a role. I suspect there will be some CEO’s there, and they won’t be any more important than a talent coordinator who has cracked the code on multi-variate marketing management. Everyone teaches and learns.
When: Thursday, January 25, 2007 from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Where: Electronic Arts, Inc. Redwood City, California.
Cost: We aren't charging for the event itself. The cost is your commitment of time and your willingness to teach and learn.
Requirements: Everyone teaches, everyone learns. Our email exchanges will cover the rest.
Format: That’s going to evolve depending on what kinds of emails I get. But it will be an unconference, and that means you won't be sitting in an audience listening to people speak. Everyone teaches, everyone learns. We do have some pretty wacky ideas however (like corporate karaoke – 10 minutes to sing your song - more to come). Again, more to come.
Maybe I won’t get any emails at all, and it will just be the people I named above sitting at EA for the day and exchanging incredible ideas. And maybe there is a real opportunity to start to build networks and exchange information about ways to truly innovate in the talent space. Either way, I will be there and it will be a great event.
Write me at jjhunter at ea and put Taluncon somewhere in the subject line.