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Dave Ulrich: ‘How HR Must Rise to Today’s Opportunity’

‘Where more is expected, more must be delivered.’ With this quote, Dave Ulrich is putting a positive spin on some of their recent survey data – that ‘HR professionals somewhat lower in the recent (2021) 8th round of our research compared to the seven previous rounds.’

That’s tough to read. After all HR’s incredible work over the last 18 months.

Is it because expectations are raised? What do you think?

If so, this is actually a force for good. One that HR can capitalise upon.

The question I want to ask today is – why is it so hard for HR to make the shift towards being more transformational, more business-credible, more respected and more valued?

This article is a must-read; it’s succinct and thought-provoking, and offers some suggestions, with questions that HR people can ask themselves:

1. Look forward and not backward.

“What do I uniquely bring to a business discussion to help deliver results that matter?’

2. Attend to patterns and not events.

“What are the principles that will guide our choices to improve human capability today and in the future?”

3. Focus on results and not activity.

“Which human capability investments will best deliver the right outcomes?”

4. Use information to make knowledge productive.

“What information do I offer to deliver outcomes that matter?”

Dave ends with some optimism:

‘While I see, honour, and learn from many exceptional HR professionals who have risen to today’s opportunities, I hope that as a profession, HR avoids pitfalls and lives up to the maxim that the best is yet ahead.’

So let’s get back to my question. If we in HR are going to make this happen, we need to understand the obstacles and the resistance.

Why is it so hard to make change happen?

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