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Come to #TEPHR!

#TEPHR is a Twitter chat session. You participate by following the hashtag #TEPHR on Twitter and reading, sending and responding to tweets during the chat hour. Our next #TEPHR chat is on January 20th at 7:30 p.m. eastern.

#TEPHR is short for “The Engagement Project in Human Resources” and originates at The EO List. #TEPHR has been going on for a few years now, and is typically quarterly. We haven’t had one since July; one reason is that we had poor turnout that night because it was the evening of the great Toronto flood. Several of the key participants were stuck in traffic or were in the process of being rescued on one of trains. This Fall it seemed everyone was so busy, and there was a big turnout at #hrevolution and #impact99 so some people who regularly participate were able to see each other in person.

Over the years, #TEPHR chats have taken on many forms. Some have been very structured, with a rigid agenda focused on some subject relating to international HR. Others have been more social, spurring on other chats and new forms of collaboration.

We’ve decided (oK, well it is me that decided but that sounds too autocratic) that this session is going to be social. Very social. We’re going to have a good time.

Many HR pros work in environments where they are the only one in the department or the only one at their level. While there are many online places to exchange information, there aren’t many social avenues to meet and greet other HR Pros from around the word #TEPHR is designed to fulfill that need.

Last year during one #TEPHR chat the participants were in a good mood and a number of “professional development” meetups were discussed. The discussions got silly after awhile. My favourite was a prolonged discussion about #GLHRWine, which stands for “Great Lakes HR Wine Unconference”. During this discussion the group started strategizing about who lived around all the Great Lakes and how we could get them in the same place. We also attempted to bring in a winery, in order to have a location to hold #GLHRWINE. (BTW–I’m still hoping one of the original participants in this discussion does something about this).

The best output we can hope for is new ideas. These new ideas could be for career opportunities, projects or new services. They could be for things that make HR more credible, more centred, more meaningful in the workplace. Or simply, better.

I believe in the power of #TEPHR. The value of the connections; they can really help you in your career development.

There are those who are fearful of establishing online relationships. To those people, I say this. Based upon very positive experiences, I’ve crossed over to the other side. People in HR who use Twitter are nice, generally honest and concerned about mutual interests. They give away far more than they ever take. Since joining Twitter, I’ve travelled to far away places just to meet some of my peeps. Being able to catch up with some of them via a tweet chat makes life all the more serendipitous.

I can hardly wait.


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