Recently there have been many discussions about the role of the HR in the organization, where some people are of the belief that HR professionals can bring changes in the organizations. Another set of people consider the role of the HR in a totally different perspective, in their opinion the HR are mere puppets in the hands of the business owners or senior management and are mostly involved in administrative or operational HR and not strategic and decision making stuff.
Many of you would have come across this dilemma in your career as HR professionals specially those who work for mediocre level companies, where the department named HR is a very new thing and is not completely understood by the owners or the senior management.
Here is my opinion on this on going debate…
- As the title of my article suggests, if you are in a hurry to bring in changes in the organization, please understand that the HR does not have a magic wand with them where you says ‘whoosh’ and things are done. It is the most patient job, as you need to be as patient or calm as you would be with your kids at home. Think ahead, plan, empathize both with management and the employees, start from very basic things such as ideas on reducing the cost of recruitment, an intellectual induction plan, and things like this. Don’t go overboard with ideas you have read or that have been implemented in other organsiations, not until you have earned the trust of the Senior Management or the Owners.
- Secondly, once you have initiated something, don’t go back till you get the results. No, I’m not saying that you should just keep on increasing the costs with your failures but every new initiative will bring in much criticism from all levels, but the idea is to take those criticisms as a first step to success. Listen to them, see if the criticism is valid or not and then keep working.
- Most of the people, specially the owners of many family run business still feel that HR is merely administration or payroll, HR professionals working in such companies will second my opinion here. So what will you do? Educate them, no matter how much time its going to take just try and involve them in HR initiatives. Even if it means going to a level of telling them each and everything related to that particular initiative, please do that. Tell them the pros and cons of each new change you want to bring in and how it will benefit them with higher returns and better profitability. Yes, my dear friends they will understand the monetary thing much better than anything else. :)
- First 2-3 months just observe and observe and study the skeleton of the organization, the more you will be clear in your fundamentals about the company and how the proper HR department can bring better results the more confident you will be in presenting your ideas. Believe in yourself and your work, if you do it then it will be just few months’ hard work and people will start following you.
- Let me share an example here, this is one company I worked with, here the Management was more than willing to bring an HR in the organization but the other department heads had shown their resistance and before I joined in, almost 4 HR people in two years had left the company. I was asked to give a presentation on HR Management and its benefits to the organization. I won’t go technical here, but would like to share that I interlinked HR’s role with all other departments in such a way that everyone present there was very keen to have an HR person in the company and I was welcomed. I clearly indicated during the presentation that I cannot work individually till I get support from all of them, and HR is zero without other functions. It wasn’t only about massaging their Egos but the fact is HR department can function better if you stop taking it as correction making department.
- Using HR jargons which is not understood by other people in the organization can do more harm than good. You may think that in order to impress the Management let me say a few words during interview, but no that thing can go wrong as well. Instead explain how the HR Department can work for the benefit of the organization. How the productivity can be increased, how training is a good tool and it’s ROI. Performance Management system and the benefits with examples. Do not talk theoretically, just give examples and then win their trust.
Will appreciate your feedback and what you all think can make the HR department a success in an Organization.
Keep sharing……it ignites the fire of knowledge in others. :)