Dying to be one of the Cool Kids

It is almost time for HRevolution.

The first HRevolution took place in 2009.  I was aware of it, but did not really understand what it was all about. I thought it was kind of a blogging shindig for HR bloggers.  I don’t even like it when people read my blog, so the last thing that I want to do is sit around and talk about it, and I passed.  I was also basically living in a van down by the river at that time, and my budget for stuff like that was about $7.oo.  When HRevolution 2010 was approaching I paid a little more attention to the details as I had gotten to know a lot of the people involved and I realized that it was something that I wanted to connect to.  I registered and bought my plane ticket, but when it came time to actually go to Chicago, life had other plans.  My wife was about 9 months pregnant, she was actually working that weekend and our other two kids were sick the morning that I was supposed to leave.  It just became pretty clear to me that if I were to actually leave that morning it would probably not be good for our relationship or for my permission to keep sleeping in the big bed.  So.  I stayed home with the kids and jealously monitored the twitter stream coming out of what seemed like a pretty cool event.  I knew that I had to be at HRevolution 2011, and it looks like I am actually going to pull it off.  Said another way, I do not care if our kids are playing in traffic…I am going to HRevolution this year.

Some conferences that I am involved in are really good networking events, some are good opportunities to get in front of a new audience and build my business…but this event is different.  From what I can tell HRevolution is where a bunch of the coolest of the cool kids from HR come together every year…so my objective is not to network or hobnob or make killer sales pitches…my objective is to be (for one day only) the coolest of the cool kids.

Check my plan:

  1. I am going to ooze indifference. I do not want anyone to know that I read their blog religiously or hang on their every tweet.  I am going to act like I have never even heard of them before…I have a bunch of great lines ready to use, such as: “Oh you’re a blogger, that’s neat…I didn’t know people were still doing that.”
  2. Stunning audiovisuals. Don’t worry, I am not going to be the guy that fires up a powerpoint at HRevolution, and I am certainly not going to be the guy that pulls out the fricking flipchart…nobody wants to be that guy.  I am actually going to be introducing some cutting edge, never before seen technology at HRevolution…it’s a mashup of mental telepathy and cave painting.  I am actually going to be painting my brilliant bullet points on the insides of peoples skulls!  It is really the perfect tool; beautiful and profound and there is no evidence for the outside world.
  3. Cologne.  I hired a crack team of anthropologists, ethnographers, analyticstaticians and social workers to profile and analyze the HRevolution attendees.  Apparently, several of them are Gen Xers.  I happen to have the ultimate tool of influence to use on Gen Xers…old school cologne.  I will be breaking out antique bottles of Drakkar, Grey Flannel and Eternity for Men.  I am going to bathe in it and They Will Love Me.
  4. Changing my name.  I have not worked out all of the details yet, but I have decided to change my name…actually the spelling of my name.  Ke$ha is clearly one of the most important artists of this and several other centuries and I have decided to follow her lead.  I am going to change my name to either j?e or j&e…they are both pretty awesome, so I am having a hard time deciding.  Either way I am pretty sure it will blow the minds of HRevolution attendees and make me a lock as the coolest person there.
  5. New words. These people have the incredibly annoying habit of calling most of my favorite words “buzzwords.”  I do not want to be the person that all the buzzword bingo tweets are about, so I am making up completely new words.  If you have never heard it before, you surely cannot call it a buzzword.  One of my favorite new words is “ratectual.”  I have not made up a meaning for it yet, but I have started to practice throwing it out in casual conversation…I think its going to kill.  Also in consideration are connectegy, situactive, aphordic and engagement. If you have any made up words you would be willing to share I would love to give them a trial run for you.

Be good to each other.

  1. Chris Ponder II

    Hey Joe,

    Looking forward to meeting you….awesome post!


  2. akaBruno

    Re: Changing my Name

    I usually sign my name QMatther, with the Q being silent.

    See you in Atlanta.

  3. TLColson

    oooh… drakkar… you had me at drakkar. just don’t mention synergy and we’ll be ok. ratectual… i think i like it. But I won’t tell you, since that won’t make me cool.

  4. Tim Gardner

    Joe – it sounds like a good plan, except somehow I thought you would act more – inclusive. We aren’t all as cool as you intend to be. I mean, I thought you were going to say “Old Spice” or “English Leather”, but I guess thats older school.

    Seriously, I await the event with similar anticipation. Looking forward to meeting you there.

  5. Deborah Herman

    Wow – if you don’t already feel like one of the “cool kids”, then who does! I am SO uncool you probably don’t even know who I am, but I look forward to meeting you at HRevolution 2011! 🙂

  6. Steve Boese

    It reminds me of how when I travel, I always check into the hotel under my normal alias – Justin Timberlake.

    See you in the ATL.

  7. John

    Wait, I used to wear Eternity for Men… How do you think I got to date all those models on South Beach?

  8. John Jorgensen

    I hope they don’t take away my decoder ring and membership card for not attending this one.

  9. Frank Zupan

    I out-cool you by not even having a blog. Blogs are so yesterday 🙂

  10. Jay Kuhns

    Great post Jo….err… I mean…it was ok. Maybe I’ll see you in ATL.

  11. M@r+|n

    I’m so frickn’ cool, you won’t even know I’m there. All you’ll smell is my Polo cologne wafting by…

  12. Robin Schooling

    I.Am.Dying. 🙂

  13. Beth McDonald

    If you’re not one of the cool kids, I don’t know what cool is! Can’t wait to meet you … and I will be the one saying, “I read your blog everyday and think your tweets are so great!!”… Ha!

  14. Michael Haberman SPHR

    Ok, I confess… I have worn Gray Flannel cologne before. Currently Tommy… what can I say. Cool kid… well kid has not been applied to me in a long while. Cool? Maybe, sometimes. I am looking forward to meeting everyone and oh, welcome to my home town.

  15. Jason

    You are a tool. At least it rhymes with cool.

  16. Trish McFarlane

    I’m just planning on being a total groupie. I won’t wear mens cologne from the 80’s but I’ll just say that any of you men who happen to be in HR (somehow), bald, and wearing Obsession better watch out! LOL

    In my book, anyone progressive enough to show up at HRevolution just HAS to epitomize coolness…. #Justsayin’

  17. Donna

    Awesome plan Joe. I really am looking forward to meeting you.

  18. adowling

    This maybe the awesomest hrev post yet. I’m coming just to see how you draw on the inside of my skull, dude thats deep. 🙂

  19. Lisa Watson

    I’m going to show up only to find out the meaning of ratectual.

  20. Pam Valentine

    Too funny.. you will be soo easy to spot with your look of indifference!

  21. Joe Gerstandt | Keynote Speaker & Workshop Facilitator | Illuminating the value of difference

    […] personalities has a chance to go on record about this event.  My first post about HRevolution was the smart ass post…this is the kiss ass […]

  22. Steve Browne

    Dude – I already know you and flip charts frickin’ rule !! I do love your approach and plan to indignantly hang around you so that it is just close enough to not be charged with stalking. Peace (I guess) – see you in the ATL !!

  23. Joe Gerstandt | Keynote Speaker & Workshop Facilitator | Illuminating the value of difference

    […] forward to leaving tomorrow morning for Atlanta and HRevolution 2011.  I have already written the smart-ass post and the kiss-ass post, so this one was going to be the serious post about what my session was going […]

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