Thank you to Lisbeth Claus at The HR Congress for raising this central dilemma within HR – a tightrope that HR practitioners walk every day. The pandemic has brought to the surface the financial versus human dilemma like never before.
Employee wellbeing is now accepted as a factor in business results. Intellectually, that is. It’s in the day-to-day that HR have to tread the difficult path between financial and human wellbeing, as humans.
As I know from personal experience, as an HR leader you can be called upon for empathy when a senior leader shares their personal problems as you stroll to a management meeting. Then, the meeting starts and you have to snap into business-savvy sharpness as the same senior leader demands a hard-nosed business case for leadership development that includes the so-called ‘soft’ skills.
It’s been part of HR’s evolution, learning how to balance the needs and expectations of stakeholders. Lisbeth also celebrated how well HR has responded to ‘crucible events’ over the decades ‘as a chameleon who has had to change their colours.’
It reminded me of last year’s research by Dave Ulrich which said, for the first time, that C-suite leaders weren’t sure that HR could meet their expectations.
It’s a double-edged sword. Higher expectations represent a potential opportunity as well as a challenge.
Whether you’re an employee, a business leader or in HR, what do you want from HR in these next critical years?
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