Meet the Speakers: Jason Lauritsen

Jason LauritsenI had the opportunity to meet Jason at HRev 2010, and I can still remember the big crowd of people who lined up to hear his session. He has some great ideas! I am pumped about seeing him at HRev and can’t wait to participate in the session he’s co-facilitating. This is a post in the Meet the HRevolution Speakers series.

  • Who are you?

I’m a husband, father, friend, community activist, HR leader and advocate, catalyst for change, speaker, writer and Talent Anarchist.  I’m also a bit of a sports fanatic and bicyclist when there’s no snow on the ground.

  • What do you do (day job, any blogging/social media stuff, volunteering, etc.)?

My day job is leading the Human Resources division for an 800 employee bank in Nebraska.  I helped create and lead some human resources efforts in my community as well, one being the Nebraska Strategic Human Resources Forum and also the HR Reinvention Experiment (  I regularly write for a couple of blogs ( and in addition to doing some professional speaking with Joe Gerstandt as Talent Anarchy.

  • What is your session title and topic?

(from Steve’s info)  The title is “If HR sucks so bad, what are YOU doing about it?” – it’s going to be an intensely interactive session that will challenge the group to look at ways to lift HR up instead of tearing it down.  The difference will be a true “call to action” vs. endless theories and catch phrases.

  • (Only for co-facilitators) Who is your co-facilitator and why/how did you choose that person?

My co-facilitator is Steve Browne.  I actually didn’t know Steve well personally when we decided to do this, but I knew of his work within the HR community and his passion for our profession.  We are both passionate and intense guys with a calling to transform HR, yet we have different styles and backgrounds.  Selfishly, I wanted an opportunity to get to know Steve and to learn from him.  This seemed like the perfect excuse and way to do it.

  • Why did you submit to speak at HRev?

I attended the event last year and was blown away by the experience.  I met so many awesome people who have become such great friends and colleagues since, that I had to come back.  One of the ways I left unfulfilled last year from the event was that I didn’t feel like there was enough conversation about actually “evolving HR” and slaying the elephant in the room.  I also left missing a distinct call to action in this regard (i.e. how should we all go back to our respective corners of the world and continue the evolution?).  So, I called Steve and we put together this proposal to be a part of filling that gap for this year’s event.

  • What are 5 words that describe you?

Catalyst, Innovation, Vision, Passion, Curious

  • What is one  fun/strange/interesting thing about you?

I am a diehard Duke basketball fan and I have infected my 13 year old son with the same passion.  This year, I was able to take my son to Kansas City to see Duke play in a tournament there.   We got to share the experience of seeing our first live Duke game together.  It was awesome.

  • Why do you think you are so passionate about your session topic?

I am tired of hearing about how much HR sucks.  The buck has to stop with HR leaders and progressives who need to courageously engage in the fight to lift our profession up.  The only thing standing in the way of HR being the profession we want it to be is HR.  We have to hold ourselves and each other to a higher standard.  That starts with us.  We own the change.  We are the change.  That’s what our session discussion will ultimately be about.

  • If people only remember one big takeaway from your session, what would it be?

My goal is that they will leave the session with at least one thing written down that they will do when they get back to the office the following Monday to become a part of the solution.  There will be a distinct call to action and people will leave with homework.

Anyone else pretty much drooling about this? I’m so pumped about the hands-on stuff. Theory is nice and all, but having something tangible to do makes a lot of difference!

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