Monday, April 28, 2014

What's Holding Back Human Resources? Part 1

By Pascal Dennis

Another splendid Jack & Suzie Welch op-ed piece – this one on the travails of HR.

As always, their insight is penetrating & unflinching.

HR should be as important as Finance, but rarely is. HR leaders should have a place in the inner sanctum of decision-makers, but rarely do.

Indeed, a baseball analogy comes to mind: HR in a large organization should be akin to, say, the Boston Red Sox Player Development function.

Instead, more often than not, HR activities devolve into the ‘cloak & dagger society’ or health & happiness sideshow Jack describes.


So here’s a question for y’all:

In your experience, what’s holding HR back? Why can’t it play the role Jack the Great, and your humble correspondent would like to see it play?

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts!

Here are a few of mine, such as they are.

Too often, HR leaders are process illiterate – they can’t see processes, let alone improve them.

Thus, HR processes become opaque, bureaucratic & ineffective. (Chapter 12 of The Remedy provides a fictional account of one such HR group.)

Secondly, management fundamentals such as Value & Waste consciousness, visual management, standardized work, team huddles and the like are often lacking.

The anaesthetizing fog of Big Company Disease rolls and all bets are off.

HR’s customer groups sense it, and stay away in droves.

Unscrupulous HR leaders are then drawn by the Dark Arts such as favoritism, rumor-mongering and other forms of malevolent politics.

Well-meaning HR leaders are drawn to health & happiness activities, but know deep down, that they’re barely scratching the surface.

More to come.

Really looking forward to hearing your thoughts too.

Best,

Pascal


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