Believe it or not we don’t sit in our offices all day dreaming up ways to give you more work or ruin your life.
HR is one of those business functions that people just “don’t get”. They either have this really narrow view of what HR is to business, or they think we are evil b*tches.
The latter is usually because they’ve had some dodgy manager that has allowed them to believe that some decision has been made because of HR.
“I don’t want to do this but HR is making me”
Then, there’s nothing like a manager who doesn’t want to have the tough conversations and puts it back on HR, setting them up as the bad guy.
So, are we all evil b*tches? Well, misconceptions come from somewhere, and absolutely there are some HR people out there doing our sector dirty. Sometime the function itself is outdated and there is no desire to move forward into the new era (or decade) of work, it can have too much red tape and it can all just be a bit too stuffy.
This isn’t how HR should look and feel. And it’s not how we operate.
Let’s unpack some common misconceptions about HR
HR is about protecting the company – HR has a responsibility to minimise risk, sometimes protecting employees is the best way to minimise risk and sometimes it’s protecting the interests of the company. HR’s job is to be a neutral voice of reason, we are there to help leaders and employees navigate doing the right thing.
Yep, a lot of HR people are anti-employee, but this isn’t what HR is, or should be. Sometimes this sentiment is driven by the leaders – if the company you are working for is anti-employee you should probably go find another job
All HR does is hire & fire – Unless you are a dedicated recruiter this is about 10% of what HR is. HR is involved in the hiring and firing process to ensure it is a good process (and a legal process), but we don’t initiate it and it is nowhere near how we spend our days.
HR is easy and anyone can do it – Ok, so we don’t just organise Christmas parties and answer employees questions. A large part of HR is strategising things that may or may not happen in the future, we look at organisational design and ensure you will have the right people to take the organisation forward. We develop initiatives to drive the right culture and build the capacity of your people
We manage ego & politics and we need to be able to manage our own emotions when we need to flip from ending someones employment to celebrating someone else’s promotion. HR is full of “big feelings” and you need to be a skilled enough operator to juggle all of that in amongst the day to day & technical aspects of the work.
They are always on our back – If you’re a manager and you aren’t completing a component of your job such as effectively leading your team, then yeah, we are going to be on your back. You know the stakes, if something is part of your job you need to do it. You can’t blame HR for the repercussions of you not doing your job.
Want to learn more about what quality HR is? Click HERE
The People & Culture Office supports HR teams and SMEs Australia-wide to take a fresh approach towards their people and culture function.
With 20-plus years in the HR game behind them, Tiahanna & Simone build capacity and culture in the workplace to drive the achievement of your operational goals and give you an edge in a talent-led economy.
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