By Jane Sunley, best-selling business author and Chairman & Founder of Purple Cubed
As I wrote in the first blog in this series in today’s climate it’s important to understand that every leader is a people leader. Easier said than done? Undoubtedly, though with a clear plan, the right tools and real commitment from the top, infinitely doable.
The only way HR can move from playing in the orchestra (recruitment, ER issues, policy stuff) to conducting the orchestra (strategy, business improvements, enabling the business) is to engage every leader in ‘the people stuff’; moving from transactional to transformational HR. As a small, though significant, example (witnessed time and time again), once leaders are responsible for holistically dealing with their people, most employee relations issues miraculously disappear…
Given that today’s employee wants transparency, open dialogue and a leader he or she can admire, the emphasis is shifting from relying on HR to sort out the people ‘issues’ to leaders becoming fully accountable for all aspects of the employee journey. This means every leader will take responsibility for attracting, engaging, developing and retaining their people. And, therefore for managing their progress, performance and well being.
It follows that HR’s role is to work with said leaders to put the right tools and technology in place. This includes future-proofed processes that are simple and straightforward enough to deliver consistently, yet robust enough to do the job. This is a change process, a culture shift, that takes specialist skill to get right, though, done well, can completely transform a business.
Before diving in, though, some fundamental foundations must be in place. For transformational HR to become a reality, it must be fully supported by the key decision makers, and underpinned by a very clear vison and culture – because everyone needs to be clear about, and on-board with, the destination before you can even start planning the journey.
Making the business case to the ultimate decision takes skill and a business-savvy approach, backed up with hard stats. There are evidence based case studies here.
Next time we’ll take a closer look at ‘the how’ around vision and culture…