HR is not the devil.
How did HR get such a bad rap? When did HR become the devil? Throughout my career I have heard the horror stories of HR. I have heard them from people within my organization and from my friends and their experiences with their own HR departments. I suppose there are a host of reasons why HR is thought of as the evil in the org but what is really important is what do we do about it? How can we change the perception of HR?
HR bears the weight of the world. A strategic HR leader or partner is responsible for leadership coaching, talent acquisition, benefits, performance, merit increases, promotions, investigations, terminations and engagement, just to get the list started. This list does not include much of the tactical part of HR that most of us haven’t seen since our first HR job. In many organizations, there are one or two HR people. Oftentimes, HR teams are qualified only on the tactical side of HR and are thrown into the strategic part of the business. This is partially how HR gets a bad rap.
So how can your organization help us change the way HR is perceived?
- Hire the right people – if you want a Human Resource Professional in your organization, then hire one. Hire a trained, skilled HR professional. Do not hire someone that wants to be in HR, hire someone that knows HR.
- Support your HR teams. Provide support to the team that supports everyone else. Sometimes your HR person needs a break too.
- Have HR’s back. Just as you do with all other members of your team, listen to your HR leader. We don’t talk simply to hear ourselves, in fact, we usually have something relevant to say.
There are times when it is important to remember, that person that ended up in your office, did something to get there, not because you invited them. We have to remember that HR does not make the rules but rather supports the business need for the rules. If you are not already doing so, get collaboration on everything. Keep in mind, we exist to support the business and the employees. We want to gain their buy-in with our initiatives.
If you want your organization to view you as the HR Leader, then behave as such.
- Engage your teams
- Support the business
- Hire great leaders.
- Creative development and training programs
- Don’t ignore the elephant in the room. If something needs to be dealt with, then deal with it. Ignoring it only hurts your credibility. Deal with it using confidentiality, integrity and respect.
- Hold yourself to the great leader standards.
- Support your safety team and their initiatives. Safety always comes first.
- Be a visionary with company culture. Keep building on culture.
HR is not the devil. If you want to change the perception, don’t be the devil. In order to be great, you must do great things. Don’t try to please them all, it can’t be done. Build your HR department with business and employee health, safety and success at the forefront of everything you do. Develop yourself as an experienced, credible HR business leader that operates with honesty and integrity. Things will begin to change.
You’ve got this! Go team #HR