Meet the Speakers: Paul Smith

paul smith pasmuzI first met Paul at HRevolution 2010, but I had been following his blog for quite a while before that. We were able to take a few minutes to share blogging strategies amidst the bustle of activity, and I am looking forward to seeing him again in Atlanta. This is a post in theĀ Meet the HRevolution Speakers series.

  • Who are you?

Paul Smith

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

I’m the HR Manager at the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission. I blog on a site called Welcome To The Occupation and can be found on Twitter ( @pasmuz), Facebook, LinkedIn and dot429. I am currently on the SHRM Standards Task Force for Diversity and Inclusion and am the Committee Chair of the Philly SHRM Thought Leadership on D&I

  • What is your session title and topic?

My session is entitled, “How Do I Get There From Here” and, in short, it is about influence: exploring the notions of how one becomes an influence, what it means to be an influencer and, in general, what is influence?

  • Who is your co-facilitator and why/how did you choose that person?

I chose China Gorman because China has had a big influence on the HR blogging community. As the former COO of SHRM, her approachability, talent, smarts and charm have influenced many people to stay with SHRM or come back to the organization.

  • Why did you submit to speak at HRev?

During the closing session at HRevolution2010, Laurie Reuttimann made the comment that everyone in this room should be in high-ranking HR positions making $200,000 a year. As much I was in total agreement with this, especially the money part, I think the gist behind her comments was that each of us needs to be in positions of influence in our organizations or our communities. I think this was a great takeaway for the end of the conference. Yet, after HRevolution, it was a challenge to maintain that charged feeling after a few weeks back to work. I think this is common reaction to attending any great conference and I thought it would worthwhile to explore this.

  • What are 5 words that describe you?

Just another human on Earth.

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

I am creating an archive of popular music. I currently have over 18,000 songs on mp3 and am collecting approximately 2,000 songs a year. My goal is to get to 30,000 within the next five years.

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

HR people always have a great opportunity to a big influence in their organizations. Sometimes that notion evades us or is difficult to believe.

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

Recently, a colleague said to me, you probably have no idea how much of an influence you are with your blog. For me, I am still trying to get to the place where I know this to be true. If it’s true that pomposity is when you think you are right, and arrogance is when you know, then, despite how strange this sounds, I want everyone’s takeaway to be arrogance. I want them to all know they are an influence.

If nothing else, this session is going to leave you feeling like you are a million bucks, I hope. Knowing you are making a difference and really, truly influencing others is a joy like no other. Thanks to Paul for his time and I hope you are planning to attend his session!

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