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4 Models for Transforming HR

Transforming HR – what does it take? Do you need massive investment, or can you take the guerilla approach? Actually, a lot can be achieved conversation by conversation. Let’s look at some practical techniques.


Business Partnering Matrix


First, let’s envision the desired outcome – top right of our model. HR are partnering strategically, with a strong focus on both the business and on the future. This is how HR deliver ROI, command respect and inspire leaders to drive high performance and engagement.

That gives HR a powerful WHY – a purpose that everyone can line up behind.

The two dimensions in our model can be used to great effect in any conversation, at any level.

Here are two questions to challenge yourself about how a conversation is going, and whether your input (talking, and asking) is moving it towards the transformational rather than the transactional:

  • To what extent am I talking/asking about the business (and not HR)?
  • To what extent am I talking/asking about the future (and not the present)?

Use them to plan a conversation too.

This is a pivotal model in our programmes for HR leaders and HRBPs.

Life in HR means that you can’t always operate in co-creation mode. Whether you’re at board level or an HR advisor, people will bring issues to you. It’s just the level that changes. Responding well has value and builds credibility and trust.

The point here is to be aware of where you are operating, and take every opportunity to move towards top right – move the conversation forward so that it’s more about the business and more about the future.

Please share what’s worked for you. What helps you to move your conversations forward?

Get in touch for a virtual coffee to chat about how your own HR transformation is going, or the challenges you’re facing. Talking with HR people is vital for me to keep learning.

My book ‘Empowering HR’ is on Amazon and other bookstores.

Upcoming workshops & webinars

Roundtable discussion: What is strategic business partnering – and how do we ensure it delivers value?

Date: Thursday 7th December 2023

Build your strength and impact as a HR Business Partner

Date: Tuesday 12th December 2023

How to build a business-led HR strategy

Date: Thursday 18th January 2024
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