Simple HR through Sound Bites
I used to write another blog - HRFishbowl. It was my foray into mouthing-off to the world. It's gone now...I gave it up...it was time. I saved some stuff, though. Much of the following came from those days. Fishbowl Logic is essentially a set of pithy ideas for keeping HR simple.
1) HR needs more of less.
2) If an employee has to read more than one paragraph to get the message, the message is too long.
3) Yes, HR’s job involves some administrative minutia…get over it.
4) Technology is great, but don’t hide behind it.
5) You’ll get more from a good conversation with an employee than you ever will from any employee survey.
6) Retention is an outcome, not a program.
7) Most other organizational functions take risks, HR needs to do so from time to time too.
8) It shouldn’t be HR’s job to tell the organization what you can and can’t do; rather, it should be to make sure everyone understands the consequences of doing it or not doing it.
9) Maslow’s hierarchy applies in the workplace; work can speak to each level...if you let it.
10) Don’t even think about “getting a seat at the table” if you can’t look at the administrative side of your HR practice and say “I got that house in order.”
11) “Blaming HR is the universal way to change the subject when you are a poor leader.” Laurie Ruettimann
12) Your HR practice is nothing more than a commodity unless you focus on creating an experience for your people.
13) The people who are really good at using performance management systems are the ones who really suck at actually giving meaningful feedback.
14) Saying an authentic “Thank You” to your people on a regular basis will build more employee engagement than any fancy (and expensive) reward and recognition program.
15) If we’re going to keep referring to our employees as “Assets” or “Human Capital”, we better find a way to get finance to report them on the Balance Sheet.
16) Every HR professional should have a Personal Board of Directors – x-functional, x-industry, x-level – meet quarterly, and have them hold you accountable…because it’s likely no one else will.
17) When in doubt, fire them.
18) Your talent acquisition team should be way more focused on hiring the people your company is going to need 1-3 years from now than it is on the people you need tomorrow.
19) Finance/Accounting shares monthly financial statements with a company’s stakeholders; HR should have an equivalent…call it a dashboard, a scorecard, whatever.
20) Most employees will never directly appreciate you for what you do in HR; if you can get over that, you’ll go much farther in your career.
21) Did you walk the halls today and shoot the shit with random employees for no reason whatsoever?
22) Don’t get stuck spending 80% of your time on the 20% who are just making a lot of noise.
23) Workplaces are not designed for trustworthiness…trust me on this.
24) The cemeteries of the world are filled with irreplaceable employees…and HR professionals…and CEOs…and executives.
25) The Human Race is hands-down the most adaptable species on this planet; employees are no different. Stop worrying about what every one is going to think about it and change what needs changing.
26) Executive Compensation Programs should not make you blush.
27) Stop doing things just because that’s the way they’ve always been done…just stop it.
28) If you’re not prepared to readily quantify the value of what you’re doing in HR, then what you’re doing has no value.
29) Break Bread Together…Often.
30) If you’re not comfortable sharing your opinion without being asked, go find another profession…please.
31) Treat your employees like human beings and 90% of everything else will take care of itself.
32) Uncertainty surrounding an outcome is always harder on people than the outcome itself…whatever it is.
33) Let people be angry from time to time…it’s human and it’s ok.
34) Pissed Off? Step away from the keyboard.
35) Less Email.
36) Selfishness isn’t necessarily a bad trait for an HR person…
37) If you find yourself complaining about your job, just stop for a moment and think about how fortunate you really are to HAVE a job…seriously.
38) Maladjustment to the workplace order is something to be proud of.
39) HR Professionals should gravitate toward conflict, not go out of their way to avoid it.
40) “Why?” should be one of the most used words in your vocabulary.
41) “Forget outside competition when your own worst enemy is the way you communicate with one another internally.” Jack Welch
42) Do something nice for your people and force them to turn off their email when they go on vacation.
43) Sometimes HR needs HR too.
44) Focus more on the Human and less on the Resource.
45) Create a community, not a workforce.
46) Stop crying about your HR Leader not being strategic enough and go out and find one who is.
47) If you spend too much time checking boxes, your brain will atrophy. Seek intellectual challenge...constantly.
48) The workplace needs a lot less "insight" and a lot more "instinct."
49) Human beings are complex. But only if you get in their way. Get the hell out of their way.
50) HR professionals are not responsible for HR sucking. Organizations who are unwilling to invest in doing HR the right way are the only ones to blame.
51) Beware the tyranny of the paycheck. Once it has you, it's hard to break free.
52) I’d rather have a mediocre public speaker give us their perspective on work from the heart than some polished CEO hit us up with their canned presentation.
53) If you feel the urge to massage your employer brand so that it is more easily consumed by your target audience, then you either have the wrong target audience or you have the wrong brand. Either way, you're screwed.
54) Don't ruin a good idea without seeding it, letting it germinate, and allowing it to take root before going off and asking for any kind of approval at all.
55) There is a time in our lives when we should stop learning what everyone else already knows and start discovering what no one else does.