I Hate Twitter’s 280-Character Limit

At the risk of sounding like the crabby old neighbor lady, waving an upraised fist and shouting “get off my lawn,” let me just say that I despise Twitter’s 280-character limit.

With a passion.

I’ve been hanging on Twitter since 2008, have participated in hundreds of organized chats, been known to tweet along at many a conference or event (one of my annual faves – #rexcomus – just happened), and have relied on the flow of my Twitter stream for both breaking news and levity.

But I am getting exhausted.

I jumped into a chat yesterday and quickly hopped off; I just could not even make the attempt to read the volumes of words flowing down the screen. There were WALLS of text as participants pontificated and wrote lengthy paragraphs when a simple idea or answer would have sufficed.

The fun of a Twitter chat, for me, has always been the fast-pace with quick-hitting (sometime edgy) comments; the platform was designed for rapid-fire banter and discussion.

Not anymore.

When Twitter expanded the available real estate it simply led to more rambling. Gone are the days of users relying on brevity with the need to be succinct, clear and concise.

If you want to be verbose do it on Facebook.

Or LinkedIn; I don’t read much over there anymore either.


Getting Sexy at #SHRM16 – Snapchat Style

snapchatI apologize ahead of time. This blog post may very well provide a vision of me, sitting on my porch in the 90 degree heat of a south Louisiana summer, yelling at the kids as they ride their bikes up and down my street.

I don’t like Snapchat.

Oh…I totally “get” Snapchat. I understand the appeal and see why it’s grown by leaps and bounds (especially amongst the 12 – 24 or 34 or whatever demographic).

But I don’t like it.

At all.

God knows I’m an ‘early’ adopter of most anything; Yo? ‘Ello? invites to every beta thing I can scrounge? Yes, yes and yes.  Good grief; I’ve had a Snapchat account since early 2014 (maybe end of 2013?? I dunno) and distinctly recall sending a snap to a friend with whom I was having lunch in Atlanta. It might well have been my first one and was a spectacular picture of the ketchup bottle. I tried to drum up some interest. We both tried to be amused.

Neither of us were amused.

I think I have sent exactly 1 snap since that auspicious beginning. I also received a fair number of male-genitalia “snaps” before I realized I didn’t have to, you know, open the stuff from random unknown people.

Interestingly enough no one seemed to really give a crap about Snapchat until all-of-a-sudden it seemed to explode, simultaneously, into the consciousness of my young-professional/Gen-X/even-the-Boomers circle of friends, family and acquaintances.

And then, heading into #SHRM16,  SHRM hopped on the bandwagon. Lord. I have yet to decide whether this will take Snapchat amongst the general middle-aged populace into the stratosphere of popularity or foreshadow a rapid (like by the end of 2016) decline. After all, once your mom, grandma, or the HR-lady-wearing-capri-pants-and-a-cardigan gets on Snapchat… it’s all over; know what I mean?

Listen…there are people doing fun and awesome stuff in the recruiting/HR space on Snapchat; check this great post (featuring loads of smart and innovative people) from my friend Lars Schmidt at Amplify Talent.

I adore these people; but I’m just not feeling it.

And then SHRM decided to go full-tilt on Snapchat for #SHRM16. Again – people I love and adore chiming in on this, but..wow..someone is totally (totes!!) PUSHING Snapchat:

Noble effort and I can applaud it but it strikes me as pissing into the wind; I just don’t see the average SHRM member/Annual Conference attendee spending his/her day snapping away between sessions on “The 3 Most Important Things to do for 2016 FLSA Compliance” and “Claim Your Seat! How to Be a Strategic HR Business Partner.”

I predict this will be like the e-n-d-l-e-s-s experiment to get HR gals/guys (with egg avatars!!!!) to tweet MADLY for the 4 days they’re living it up in the conference city after which, of course, they immediately forget they even have a Twitter account until 365 days later when it’s time for the next go-round.

I should be happy I guess; SHRM is attempting to appeal to the masses in a current and youthful (wow!) way. And, interestingly enough, on a channel where it’s a bit harder to measure the efforts of one’s efforts/engagement.

I truly do hope it’s fun for everyone; I just hope I don’t get any genitalia-snaps from SHRM attendees……

Now #GetOffMyLawn


An Idea Worth Sharing: HR Style

coke-mean-joeThe other day, while sitting in a track at #rcnvstexas thinking deep thoughts about the future of work and HR and whatnot, I received a text message from a friend. It was a simple one. It was also one of the Top 10 most boring phrases every human resources professional must employ in her career: “I have to write a safety management plan.”

Now that’s some #sexyHR.

And, the wheels of commerce being in constant motion, this meant she needed to (a) write this plan in a week and (b) roll it out – presumably with the accompanying training for employees, managers and company leaders.

Yup. #SuperSexyHR

My friend followed up her original text message with another SMS: “do you by any chance have a plan I can use as a template?”

Luckily, since I save e-v-e-r-y- t-h-i-n-g, I was able to say “I sure do; give me a few and I’ll email it to you.”

Which I did.

Social. Sharing. Somewhat detailed. Not necessarily cutting edge content of course; pretty pedestrian when all was said and done. Kind of dull and, let’s face it, probably google-able. The kind of stuff that bores some people to tears. “OMG…I would stab a fork in my eye if I had to do that kind of crap.” Real day-to-day trench HR. Mind-numbing to some; comforting to others.

Necessary to many.

That 5 minute interaction between colleagues, in its ultimate simplicity, defines the foundation of open source HR. #HROS is, as defined by Lars Schmidt and Ambrosia Vertesis, “a movement designed to encourage employers to open up their HR playbook, share their best practices, inspire and learn from their peers in talent acquisition and management.”

The vision of #HROS is to transform the field of HR to become more strategic and innovative with values of:

  • Sharing is caring (openness)
  • Have an impact (action)
  • The community is greater than the individual (humility)
  • Learn through collaboration (inspire)

Do the HR gals and guys at your local SHRM chapter meeting yearn to be more strategic? More innovative? Are they consumed by desire to set the world on fire? Well…not all of them. But some of them.

I do believe, I really do, that more and more and more HR practitioners are restless. They want to bust out and try something different. They crave new information. They want to be inspired.

We who work in HR, especially in fly-over country (aka not Santa Clara. Not NYC. Not London) may feel as if we’re the only ones slogging about with spreadsheets and word documents. Streaming is banned. There’s no wifi at the office. “For the love of G-*-D I have worse technology at work than I do at home!!” has been the keening lament of many an HR lady.

We sometimes feel like the only ones in an analog world while everyone else is living digital.

But you’re not alone, my fellow HR practitioner. You’re never alone when you have access to people. When you have access to ideas.

Is a safety management plan inspiring? Innovative? Transformative? Maybe not. But it’s shareable.

And sharing…IS caring.


Check out HR Open Source (#HROS). I’m truly honored to be serving on the volunteer team with a bunch of inspiring friends, colleagues, and overall amazing people.