The Role of HR in an Evolving Workplace

Thanks to the HR Ringleaderfor this thoughtful recent post from Mike Grindell which was posted a few years ago.  Mike is a senior change, strategy, and operations executive focused on driving business results through organisational capabilities and by building processes and operations that matter.  Mike was a 16 year executive of The Coca-Cola Company holding a variety of executive roles focused on building organizational capabilities and driving talent management initiatives. Prior to Coca-Cola, Mike held positions of increasing responsibility with Citigroup and Federated Department Stores, respectively.

I believe this blog post still rings true on the role HR leaders’ play in today’s new environment in 2012.  Mike Grindell argues that it ultimately comes down to a straight forward equation:

Better HR leaders and efforts create great leaders, great leaders create better companies, great companies create great communities in which to live and work.

So, how does HR get there?  A few suggestions/questions are offered:

1. Be a student and expert in your business/area of expertise. Allocate time to read about your organisation, its category, how money/success is made, and competitors – do you truly have time blocked on your calendar?

2.  Be a killer business person.  Know the Profit and Loss better than the Chief Finance Office, track the equities markets, track competitors, visit operations of your organisation and those of competitors – does your time allocation reflect being a killer business person?

3. Engage in the development of the HR discipline.  SHRM, AHRI (national and local), conferences, follow experts – are you regularly involved with your discipline?

4. Coach, mentor, develop.  There are mentoring organisations everywhere – they are always looking for mentors – are you a member, do youallocate time every month to offer advice, counsel, provide real feedback, a supportive comment?

5. Many HR leaders manage the largest budget items in any organisations Profit and Loss – what are you doing to drive different results with those budgets?  Salaries, benefits, training dollars, and other budgets often represent the largest set of investment/expense dollars for any organisation – are you bringing innovation and new ways to invest and drive results?

6. Accept that the rules have changed forever.  HR is not about programs and processes anymore (yes, there will be recruiting, compensation, benefits, talent management, etc) – it is about driving sustainable business results that matter.  The decades long practices of driving engagement through compensation, rewards, talent practices have changed – it is simply not a given or assumed anymore that salary increases, affordable benefits, great training and other efforts are part of the employment deal – is there a point of view and a business agenda that is being advanced in the context of today’s new realities?

7. Are you nourishing your own soul, spirit, health?  I truly believe each of us must flourish as an individual before we can help an organisation be healthy.  Are you making time for health, for learning, for love, for culture, for laughter?  Are you a more fulfilled person today than last year?  Are you having the life you planned?

Offer your point of view and thoughts – it’s an interesting and challenging world we find ourselves operating in every day.  The HR discipline must develop its own great leaders so we can drive the results required.

 So, what do you think?  What are your comments?


2 Responses

  1. Love this post, thanks Tony

  2. Some great points in there!

    I do like this comment,

    “The HR discipline must develop its own great leaders so we can drive the results required.”

    I think sometimes we forget our own back yard. We are too busy rolling out programs and initiatives to the rest of the organisation and forget to follow suit. The old ” plumber with busted pipes” syndrome.

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