If there’s one role in a business that attracts negative press it’s HR and People Management, last to be added to the Christmas party list, we can silence rooms by just walking in 😊 Now, whilst there is a bit of tongue and cheek to those stereotypes and lots of work has gone into improving those in recent years, there is still some way to go and in today’s blog I’m going to look at what we can do to help that perception.
Firstly, show up. Yes, it’s that simple be present and there for your teams. One of the biggest complaints is that HR do not take ownership or reply to employees’ concerns. It’s about the little things here, acknowledgement of emails, provide timelines and be open about the work involved. Communicating is so important, keeping all parties updated will help reassure everyone, even when the timelines shift and let’s face it that happens a lot with our work!
Be involved, as HR we are in such a privileged position that we get to see the whole of the business and with that we can help shape things like culture. Those businesses who are people focused are the ones that are thriving and what better people to be involved in those discussions than the ‘people’s people’? Helping to shape the mission statements and values and then keeping them in play through day-to-day work will create a much more positive attitude across the board.
Be proactive, as I’ve mentioned above, we are fortunate that we can help to influence across all areas of the business from the recruitment and onboarding to performance management and reward policies. It’s often the experience an employee has within these that have the biggest impact on their opinion of the company. Helping to shape these to be the best they can, and people focused will help the business move forward positively.
Being dependable and reliable are key attributes that most seek from a HR department, for me it goes a little further. I think you need to be all these and take the time to understand the needs of your people and business as these can differ from role to role. If you take this time and really listen to all parties, stick to sound and fair advice you will promote a much more positive environment where people feel heard and valued.