I’ve Heard this Song Before
I spent most of today at our local SHRM chapter conference, which had a theme of “Linking HR to Business.” It was a great event with a sizable turnout of very engaged attendees. The CFO of a locally-headquartered restaurant chain shared his perspective on the role of HR, and a local HR leader shared some energizing observations about connecting employee motivation to outcomes …. while ensuring one doesn’t make assumptions about what motivates people.
The keynote presentation was by Deborah Avrin, SPHR, of Management Skills Resource, Inc. and was entitled “The Strategic HR Edge.” Throughout the day, Deborah, in a very engaging and participative manner, provided suggestions for HR professionals so that they can “gain that edge”:
- Create a vision of your role
- Set your objectives
- Assess yourself (and your HR team) using the HR Competency Model
- Discover the most effective way to communicate with other functions and the C-Suite
As we progressed through the day, with a number of small-group and table-top exercises, we touched on many of the areas where HR impacts the organization including talent management, performance management, compliance, and financial impact. We very briefly tackled measuring effectiveness (please – not time-to-fill), and naturally, the phrase “seat-at-the-table” popped up numerous times throughout the day. The over-arching theme that emerged, however, was moving from what was termed “traditional” HR to “strategic” HR.
So please forgive me if I just disconnected from the content for a large portion of the day. We’ve been having this same discussion for so many years now, I wonder how it is possible for HR professionals to act as if it is the first time they have heard some of these tips for being ‘strategic?’ Speak the language of the C-Suite. Understand the business. Make your case. Measure what’s important.
How can we not yet be at a stage where the norm is for HR professionals to be competent Credible Activists, Culture and Change Stewards, Talent Managers/Organizational Designers, Strategy Architects, Operational Executors and Business Allies?
The expectations have been outlined – for heaven’s sake we MUST, by now, know what we need to do. Let’s go out and do it.
Let’s hear a new song.