Building a strategic partnership between the CEO and HR has to be far more intelligent, challenging and honest than ‘you scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours’.
In fact, scratching an itch will usually make the problem worse. Doing a quick fix, making the problem go away for now, saying what the CEO wants to hear – it leads to more, deeper damage and the itch will get worse.
HR have to help business leaders understand the cause of the itch, or issue, and how to work at a deeper level to heal it. This takes longer and demands more self-discipline as well as patience – from them.
Like helping the CEO to role model leadership behaviours that will inspire their fellow leaders to follow the spirit as well as the policies of good practice – like managing performance and diversity.
Persuading others to change behaviour is tough, and demands explanation, with examples of cause and effect.
You don’t stand a chance if you don’t have their respect first.
The whole organisation depends on the quality of these top-level conversations if they’re going to drive both profitability and culture.
My book ‘Empowering HR‘