Businesses of today face huge challenges, but as HR leaders — we’ve got this! Stepping up to this challenge depends on many things but above all, it depends on the capability of the function and the people in it at every level to deliver individually and collectively. So don’t just think about the top-level strategy, plan for those coming through the ranks and up the ladder and where to get them where they need to be. Question: if they’re not chasing your job, are you doing it right?
What makes a good HR function? Here are some principles:
It’s not about HR leaders, it’s about the organization
(I use the term organization rather than business as everything I say is as relevant to a charitable or public sector organization as it is to a quoted, family, or private equity business).
HR isn’t about doing HR ‘stuff’ but is about making a difference to sustainable organizational performance and the capability that underpins it.
The word sustainable is key, as HR needs to balance the short-termism of finance against the long-term survival of the business.
This is about going beyond being commercial to build credibility, to take a balanced view of business performance grounded in commercial value creation, the triple bottom line, and ethics.
It means getting over any inferiority complex when faced with so-called ‘line’ or ‘commercial’ leaders to demonstrate that building a sustainable business requires more than short-term knee-jerk reactions.
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