How HR professionals are equipping companies to make the right choices during these difficult and defining times.
In his book, “Man’s search for meaning”, author and Holocaust survivor, Victor Frankl discusses that even in the most difficult situations, we have a choice when reacting to severe suffering. Making the right choices, true to his values, kept Frankl alive.
It seems today that we are presented with choices to be made amid a continuing pandemic. The avalanche of emotions that many of us are experiencing through loss, lockdown, and redundancies have also created a powerful disruption to expose the wrongs in the world — urging us to stop and look around. Strangely, amongst all the fear and uncertainty came a feeling of hope, a possibility of renewal. A similar sentiment was felt within our places of work, where we were given the disguised opportunity to make a choice — perhaps by looking deeper, understanding better, and acting kinder towards one another.
A few months into the crisis, the feeling of possible renewal is starting to fade away. We are making peace with what’s going on, often deciding to wait.
While some organizations have taken actions to respond, those actions have often brought only temporary relief. For example, introducing new hybrid working models, new virtual communication platforms, and providing access to wellbeing programs online. Other actions have led to quickly downsizing the workforce to account for the loss of business. Both types of actions have left organizations exposed for an uncertain future.
In HR we are better equipped than anyone else to help organizations make the right choices in these difficult and defining times.
If you are not sure where to start, here are 5 actions HR professionals are taking to help their leaders choose a better and safer future for their organizations:
#1—They take every single opportunity to partner with and educate business leaders on how talent data impacts business decisions.
Proven invaluable during COVID, HR is taking their place at the executive’s table. With 87% of leaders not sure about having the right people to execute strategy, these HR professionals bring talent data to every meeting and help leaders link talent decisions to business strategy.
#2—They create and adapt HR processes by putting employees in the center of them.
Going beyond the buzz words of agile and design thinking, they truly understand and embed these powerful methodologies. This means every process, every product, every meeting is designed with the employee experience in mind.
#3—They make decisions and support talent guided by science and company values.
They use tools to identify what makes their talent great, what needs attention, and enable them to take steps towards the future. Knowing that 57% of employees on average are hesitant to recommend their organization as a good place to work, these HR professionals are making sure that those who leave and those who stay have access to needed support.
#4—They accelerate a positive change by ensuring their organizations have leaders with 3 vital skills during and post-crisis.
They hire, nurture, and develop leaders who show empathy to provide support, vision for change, and innovation to help grow, ability to build powerful networks in order to learn and influence.
#5—They carefully design learning agendas and bring in easy to use technology to address reskilling and growth.
With a 250% increase in the uptake of LinkedIn courses in the first 3 months of COVID-19, they see an opportunity to help navigate and personalize the overwhelming world of learning technology. They integrate organization-specific learning roadmaps supported by tools to review employees’ skills, identify skills gaps, and progress towards training new skills.
What has been your choice to act during pandemics? As you are looking for answers, start making choices towards the future where you help organizations look deeper, understand better, and act kinder. Making the right choice in these difficult times might just help us not only to survive but to become stronger, wiser, and kinder, as it did for Frankl.
Sources that helped to inspire or inform this article
- SHL GATR report 2018
- Officevibe’s State of Employee Engagement report
Natavan is a senior talent solutions consultant, global HR leader, trainer, and certified coach who is passionate about the future of HR and the world of work. She specializes in talent assessment and development, change, and career management topics and solutions. She has been partnering with global organizations for over 15 years both in consultancy and in HR practitioner roles across different industries and geographies.