Learning to Address Change in Human Resources #shrm14

HR is always found in precarious situations.  We are able to identify strengths and weaknesses in an organization pretty rapidly.  The problem we face as professionals is how to go about making a change, or for that matter making a change at all.  We are the biggest advocates for companies.  We are the voice of the organization, and we help support the goals, and create the mission and vision.

Learning to Address Change in Human Resources #shrm14


The issue lies within the areas that need improvement within a company.  It is almost like a chess match.  We have to be very strategic in each and every move that we make.  HR can be seen as a police department or can be seen as a strategic partner.  Unfortunately, more times than not we are seen as the police.

When someone is hired into HR within a company they have been vetted pretty thoroughly.  They have usually met with every key stakeholder within the organization.  The reason the hiring process is so long with HR individuals is that they must fit the culture of the organization and align closely with everyone including the CEO/ President all the way down to the Managers and Directors within the organization.

There are some battles worth fighting and there others that are not worth fighting.  Often times, HR is brought in to help with process.  It can be frustrating to individuals who think that things are running smoothly and don’t want change.  If there is one thing I have learned in life, it is the only constant IS change.

Change is never easy and it is dangerous.  You may make some people very unhappy.  There may be changes in leadership and there may even be changes in direction of the organization.  When you do these things, it is imperative to have all of your facts straight and have the buy in from the key stakeholders within the organization.  If leaders aren’t able to see your “vision” then you aren’t able to make the changes you want.

You need to start small.  What are some obvious things that need an immediate fix?  What can we change in 6 months?  What may take 2-3 years?  You have to know these things.  Conversations with people will HR identify these things.  As HR professionals, we will find ourselves falling on an ax on certain issues and it is simply not worth it.

If you have many small wins, win over the leadership, win over the management within the organization, chances are you are going to be the strategic partner you were looking to become in the first place and you will make a difference in an organization.

How do you as an HR professional address change?

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Will Thomson

Will Thomson lives in Austin, Texas, and works for Rosetta Stone as the global sales and marketing recruiter. He has been in recruitment and sales for 20 years. He has recruited some of the most sought-after talent around the globe, and is a regular blogger for the recruitment industry. Connect with Will.


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