I’m not saying I hate HR people.
(Put those pitchforks down.)
Those considering a career in HR tend to really care about people. They genuinely want to make great places to work and improve the employee experience.
That’s what they’ve signed up for.
But the reality is that HR can be less about people and more about risk mitigation, employer protection and regulation.
We signed up because our perception of the role or organisation aligns with our personal values.
It means something to us personally.
This is the same for police officers who want to make a difference in their local community, but spend 80%+ of their time not on the beat. Or for teachers who are passionate about helping the next generation grow, but find the reality of inspections, testing and retesting overwhelming.
When what an organisation “says” they’re about (or what we perceive they are about) is different to what actually happens day-to-day, we feel that.
This misalignment can get in your organisation’s way of delivering performance and goals. Our culture is misaligned.
But, on an individual level, you’re then asking us to behave or act in a way that is different to our values. Our values are misaligned.
We call this toxicity.
It’s why HR functions have some of the highest burnout rates of any employee group. It contributes to HR teams often moving together from company to company (there’s safety in numbers).
And it’s that that I hate.
The bigger the difference between talk and walk, the more of a disservice we’re providing to our customers, colleagues and commercial interests. Not to mention encouraging toxic relationships with individuals who genuinely care about what you said you were about.
If we’re going to talk the talk, we need to walk the walk too.
Let’s change that. Let’s walk our talk.