Meet The Disruptors: Ed Baldwin of DisruptHR Kansas City

Who are the people that are taking the lead in disrupting the future of work?

Theyäó»re the official Disruptors (Organizers) of DisruptHR events held in cities around the world. Each week, weäó»ll introduce you to one of these intelligent, inspiring, and beautiful people (okay, pick two) who have stepped up, and volunteered to organize a Disrupt HR event in their city.

Ed Baldwin of DisruptHRξKansas City (Disruptor #191)

LinkedIn äóñ [Ed Baldwin]

Twitter äóñ [@ebaldwinkc]

Who are you, and what do you do in your äóìday jobäó?

My name is Ed Baldwin, I am the VP of HR, CWB Holdings Inc.

How did you first hear about DisruptHR?

A colleague suggested I attend in Denver shortly after moving there.

It was an incredible line up of speakers and it was precipitous that I just happened to sit next to and meet the infamous Jennifer McClure, founder, and leader of DisruptHR, at that event!

I was thoroughly impressed with the program, met some awesome people, and as they say “the rest is history”.

Why did you decide to raise your hand and become an organizer for DisruptHR events in Kansas City?

Denver has such a great thing going and the Disruptors here were rock solid, so I guess I kind of wanted to follow in their footsteps.

Prior to moving to Denver I had spent almost 20 years living and working in Kansas City and knew they didn’t have a chapter. So I figured it would be cool to start the movement there where I still have a fair amount of contacts in the HR community, and where I knew the concept of disruption in HR would take off.

How many events have you organized?

We held our first event in March of 2017 and were thrilled to have 160 people in the HR community in KC attend.

We are currently planning and organizing a second event 2.0 in January of 2018!

What types of people/industries have attended your events?

I’m biased but our first event attracted what I consider to be the finest and most progressive HR and recruitment talent in Kansas City.

We were fortunate to have some start-up speakers and even a high school coach speak on leadership at our first event but are planning to branch out further to government leaders, CEOs and sports figures in our next speaker line up.

What are you most proud of that has come out of being involved with/organizing DisruptHR events?

DisruptHR events encourage everyone involved (attendees, speakers, organizers) to think more creatively, be more innovative, and generate new ideas and approaches that buck conventional “old school” practices and programs. That improves the profession and it’s risk-averse reputation immensely. I’m proud to be a part of that.

What kind of feedback have you received from those who attended prior DisruptHR Kansas City events?

I smiled inside when several people commented to me that “we need this”. They were speaking about disruption in HR, they were speaking about disruption in Kansas City.

The networking and interaction, the excitement and enthusiasm, it was contagious. So much so that no one would have imagined it was an HR event!

What is your favorite DisruptHR Talk, and why?

The two that immediately come to mind, for me, are “Idea Sex” from Greg Roche and “Is Ugly the Next Protected Class?” from Kathleen Brenk. These two set the bar for me.

Idea Sex in Talent Management | Greg Roche | DisruptHR Talks from DisruptHR on Vimeo.

Is UGLY the Next Protected Class? | Kathleen Brenk | DisruptHR Talks from DisruptHR on Vimeo.

And of course all the speakers from DisruptHRKC! I also like the talks from Kris Dunn, Tim Sackett, Jen McClure and Nick Larche. I’m proud to say I consider all of these folks to be my colleagues and friends.

Based off of the Talks and conversations at your events, what do you feel are the areas with the biggest opportunity for disruption?

Total Rewards, Employee Relations. These are two of the most traditional and static areas of HR. It’s time to completely rewrite these two scripts.

What excites you or frustrates you about the future of work, your career and/or DisruptHR?

I passionately believe that the most crucial element of being a successful company is fielding a great team of people. The company with the best team wins – it’s that simple. And yet, many executive teams and boardrooms just don’t get it.

I’ve got a passion (and maybe a wee-bit of a chip on my shoulder) for helping leaders understand that, and then proving it to be true by guiding and teaching great people practices. People are the only long-term sustainable competitive advantage, so investing in building a better team is always a good idea regardless of the business you are in.

Whatäó»s Happening With DisruptHR Kansas City:

äóñ DisruptHR Kansas City Community Page

äóñ #DisruptHRKCŒæ Twitter mentions


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