Are You An HR Ninja?

by May 9, 2018

Over the last decade, I’ve had lots of people ring me up to partner with them on culture change – whether they sought training, coaching or consulting. Through these conversations, it’s become very clear to me that I’m interacting with two types of HR: Compliance-focused HR, and Strategic HR.

Compliance-focused HR professionals view their role as technical. They submit payroll on time, schedule sexual harassment trainings, keep on managers to hold their annual performance reviews, etc.

They keep the company running – they get employees paid, handle legally required paperwork, and focus on minimizing risk.

Strategic HR professionals are focused on the organization’s vision and mission and how to forecast organizational needs. They conduct job analysis, develop recruiting strategies, create onboarding programs, ensure managers are delivering collaborative performance management, etc.

These folks want to set their employees up for success. They are passionate about building and sustaining a positive work environment where their employees can thrive.

Neither is wrong or right – just different.

I do notice a pattern, however. Smaller companies tend to have more compliance-focused HR people, and that can hinder company growth because there’s no strategy behind HR activities. HR becomes a cost center that’s just part of doing business, like paying the electric bill or having insurance.

I also notice that even in larger organizations where the HR professionals tend to think more strategically, leaders still only view them as administrators of personnel. Those strategic HR folks are fighting for budget, opportunity, and even permission to do their jobs effectively and strategically.

They want to be change-makers and bottom-line contributors, but leadership is holding them back.

Seeing these patterns over and over again has driven me to become what I like to think of as an HR Ninja.

I’m always finding ways to help HR professionals be more strategic without getting budget or even permission from their leaders. I do it because I hate to see leaders keep their own employees from thriving, simply because they don’t understand what HR can really do.

If you want to be an HR Ninja too, check out my upcoming webinar on Employee Engagement That Transcends Generations. I will give you the low-down on what drives engagement in each of the generations currently in our workforce, and how to tap into it…

But my tips will all be turn-key tips, things you can do without budget or permission.

And if you’re in HR, you know the newest generation is changing the way every generation works, so you’re gonna need a ninja star and nunchucks to be successful, especially if your leader won’t let you be as strategic as you want to be.

So join me on May 15 at 10 am PST – all attendees get a free pair of nunchucks (kidding, sort of).

Register here.


About Catherine Mattice

Catherine Mattice, MA, SPHR, SHRM-SCP is President of consulting and training firm, Civility Partners, and has been successfully providing programs in workplace bullying and building positive workplaces since 2007. Her clients include Fortune 500’s, the military, several universities and hospitals, government agencies, small businesses and nonprofits. She has published in a variety of trade magazines and has appeared several times on NPR, FOX, NBC, and ABC as an expert, as well as in USA Today, Inc Magazine, Huffington Post, Entrepreneur Magazine, and more. Catherine is Past-President of the Association for Talent Development (ATD), San Diego Chapter and teaches at National University. In his book foreword, Ken Blanchard called her book, BACK OFF! Your Kick-Ass Guide to Ending Bullying at Work, “the most comprehensive and valuable handbook on the topic.” She recently released a second book entitled, SEEKING CIVILITY: How Leaders, Managers and HR Can Create a Workplace Free of Bullying.

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