#SHRM14 is buzzing with fun topics, great vendors and 13,000 attendees, but I may have witnessed the best session that this conference had to offer! This morning Steve Browne gave an energizing presentation that was very much-needed, considering it was 7am. Steve has an amazing outlook on the HR profession and how we can be change agents for our organization. The theme is to not be what we think HR is supposed to be and start being what our people need us to be. How do we get there? We have to start with being ourselves at work. We all know HR has stereotypes and to save face I won’t run through a list of them, but the best way to break those stereotypes is to be ourselves at work because after all, HR is human too!
Now that you are being yourself lets simplify HR. Quit using policies to punish people. Stop automating your leaders. Stop and listen to your people. I know, that’s crazy talk to some of you, but put some thought into it. We don’t get it because we want people to be like us and not like themselves. When did that happen? Why do we want people to stop being themselves at work? Why do you stop being yourself at work? Doesn’t that make for a more taxing day? Doesn’t that make for a tense work environment? Isn’t that way less enjoyable? I digress..
Steve had a lot of great takeaways and for the sake of keeping your attention I’m going to keep it short (AND HIGHLY RECOMMEND THAT WHEN YOUR LOCAL CHAPTER OF HR PROS ARE IN NEED OF A RECHARGE YOU GET THIS GUY TO COME DOWN AND SPEAK AT AN EVENT), but a huge one that really set with me is “Do not let anyone demean what you do.” Not even your friends. We can’t expect our people to respect what we do, if we don’t respect what we do. Are you listening HR? Are you listening my fellow snarks? Nothing has ever been improved using negativity. Negativity is not a problem solver, if anything it’s a problem creator. Steve challenged us to not use this approach so I’m passing the challenge on to you. We wouldn’t want our people to try to implement change through negativity, right?