I got to spend a fantastic day yesterday with a team of HR professionals; guys and gals ranging from what SHRM likes to call “Young Professionals” to others who, like me, have worked in HR since the Mesozoic Era pre-FMLA / almost pre I-9 days.
We talked recruiting and comp and benefits and HR technology. We discussed HR operations, efficiencies, and learning and development. We even wandered into employee relations because you know HR folks can’t get together without swapping a good horror story or two. (We ran out of time so I didn’t get to share my classic ’employee pooping on the floor’ story).
I love having these conversations with people who are passionate about the work they do and enthusiastic about human resources. HR practitioners who feel an affinity with the culture of their organization and become curators and storytellers while also realizing that evolution will occur.
What’s exciting to me is that HR teams are also evolving. Honestly. Many are no longer content to merely look backwards and realize that Great (and future focused) HR is about:
- creating an HR strategy and framework that is both proactive and responsive to the shifting needs of the business
- empowering individual employees so they can connect their strengths and capabilities to the success of the organization
- adding value by supporting and enabling the execution of organizational strategy
- being involved, proactive and agile
It absolutely fills my heart with joy when HR practitioners understand that we are not defined by what we do – the tasks we get done so we can make check marks on our giant To-Do-Lists. Of course we have to get shit done but that’s NOT our raison d’etre. We are, however, defined by how and why we do what we do.
Fun stuff. Really. Conversations about human resources are not always as boring as they may appear from the outside. And my friend John Jorgensen, who isn’t a fan when I use the phrase, will be pleased to know there was nary an HR lady in the bunch.
image: Wikipedia – creative commons