I wrote recently of HR terms that when taken outside of HR don’t mean much. Now, upon reflection, here are my initial thoughts on words (and thoughts really), worthy of being taken outside of the HR boardroom:
- A crystal clear understanding of what your organization is trying to achieve, and how it is going about that. In other words, the organization’s strategy.
- An even more crystal clear understanding of the financial engine of your organization. How does your business stay in business?
Now pause, and make sure that you get these, because if you don’t then you are pure, pure, overhead. Few of the actions you take in your day to day work are driving your organization’s strategy or financial engine forward. Harsh, I know, but better coming from me than your CEO, who won’t actually tell you this. He just won’t invite you to the meeting.
Now, once you have gained a clear understanding of your organization’s strategy and financial engine, you are well on your way to being able to articulate how the work performed by your HR function adds value. Consider the following:
Things that drive productivity and performance versus making employee’s happy. I get that these are not mutually exclusive, but us HR types do tend to bias towards the “making employees happy” side of the scale.
Things that drive the organization to feed its financial engine i.e. great performance management tools for your sales force; effective management training for new managers; effective onboarding processes that get new employees up to speed and productive as quickly and effectively as possible.
Now go forth and add value, and please don’t say “talent management” 🙂