Changing the HR Story

The new year presents a fresh start. If there is something you'd like to start doing, stop doing or change the way you are doing it, this is when many jump on the resolution train. Whether you are a resolution-maker or not, making something better is bound to be on your mind.

It is on mine. Right out front, I have my running (I plan to run a half-marathon), my food choices (I've been Paleo for over a year now but have begun to sugar-stray), my skin (time to pay my dues for my younger years of sun worship) and the coaching I give, receive and accept.

HR Principal.png

On my mind today (but only because of a prompt) is what I'd do to make HR better. So, here it is.

How human resource professionals are viewed has a direct impact on their ability to impact change. And in many cases, HR pros are viewed as transaction managers, or worse, a necessary evil.  The stories about human resources go like this:

  • HR is hard to work with.
  • HR can't get the basics right.
  • Include HR, why? What do they do anyway?

The stories are not going to change on their own.  Bob McDonald, then CEO, Proctor and Gamble said, "People are going to tell stories about you whether you want them to or not. Choose which ones they tell." 

I love this quote for a few reasons: first, it's true and second, it puts HR professionals and leaders across the globe in the driver's seat. Don't like the stories? Change them. Quit hiding behind technology, leading with the employee handbook and blaming the economy for recruitment and retention challenges. Stop talking (what you think sounds expert and dazzling is actually distancing) and start listening.

Start by getting your HR house in order - strengthen your HR infrastructure and your HR workforce. Align business decisions with organizational objectives  - focus on streamlining the hiring process, ensure employees have the necessary skills and abilities to do their jobs and develop targeted strategies to assist supervisors and managers with performance management. Share your success, take credit where credit is due and be nice to your friends.

Do this and I guarantee the conversations about HR will change and you will be sought out by others for your absolute awesomeness.

Changing the HR Story first appeared on

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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a free download from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I expressed are my own.