I am not arrogant enough to consider myself a futurist, but now and then I spot somethings that seems fairly obvious to me that are going to come to pass in the future. Those of us who hang out here in the #HR Cyberspace are always trying to understand the next thing, be plugged into to new trends that are coming down the pike or to understand how to deal with the newest regulation that has come our way. Said another way I think we are trying to be on our “A” game, everyday.
I continue to see something that is going on and is calling out to be fixed, but it just rolls over every time. We need #HR pros to enter the government sector at the State, County and Municipal levels and show career bureaucrats and elected officials how to bring some professionalism to running an organization.
I also understand that most of these people don’t want to have a damn thing to do with us because of several reasons:
- They want to hire whoever they desire for positions regardless of competence
- They wish to continue to employee people regardless of their performance (because they are politically connected)
- They want people who will be loyal to them regardless of the circumstances
When I look at this list, I understand why a politician doesn’t want some HR bureaucrat telling him his precinct committeeman’s job performance is substandard and they should be counseled and written up for these transgressions. I don’t agree with them but I do understand.
However, if we (the public, HR Pros, government employees) don’t see huge improvements in this area it is going to continue to drag down government at all levels. One group of people that see this is the government employees that are unionizing. I have never been accused of being a friend of organized labor, but I completely understand and agree with people who are employed in government that want to unionize, in order to feel that they have some modicum of control in their workplace. Those folks in my home state fear their new governor, who wants to do whatever he wants without accountability to anyone, including his own General Assembly.
To further my point, let’s look at another situation about 100 miles from my home. If you don’t know about the issues in Ferguson, Mo – stop now. In my opinion, the city has done a poor job of recognizing the need for some type of diversity and inclusion program. Additionally, they have done an even worse job of hiring and recruiting. Would a professional HR department let this happen, I certainly would hope not, and if it did you would see that HR pro being shown the door!
In most organizations outside of government, were the organization failing, the message would be communicated to outsiders, and the people at the top would most likely be toppled in an effort to save the organization. Yet in government, one of newest ways to get out of a financial mess is to file for bankruptcy. This is an alarming trend in my opinion. If your organization is heading down a bad financial path, don’t we change people and the processes?
I am not insinuating that businesses never fail, or that we don’t have people even in HR who make bone- headed decisions now and then, but it just seems like government could use some more HR Professionalism and a little less government as we know it today. According to the SHRM Legislative Team, out of the 535 Congress members, only 3 actually have experience working as a Human Resource Professional.
All of what I am reading tells me that government in general isn’t working so well and the electorate isn’t all that happy with what they are seeing.
Ok, so I have framed the problem nicely, so what do we do about this? Hmm get more HR pros elected? Ouch – maybe.