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It’s Always Someone’s First Time

Jul 15

Sometimes I forget that many other HR and Talent pros aren’t as geeky about the profession as I am.  I like to break down the profession of HR on the following scale:

1. The 1%ers.  These are the people who really get HR and Talent. They are the ones who actually decide what the future of the profession will look like, because they are smarter than all of us.  I am not one of these folks. I love to hang out with these folks, and I’m happy to call some of them friends, but I’m sure I annoy them with my questions and trivial insights.

2. The First Ten. The top ten percent of our profession.  Most of these are folks are the people you see running big HR shops, HR thought leaders, pundits in the space.  Smart folks to be sure, but also folks are involved beyond just doing the job of HR. They are the foot soldiers of the one percenters. They carry the message. I like to think I’m here most days.

3. The Masses.  These are the good men and mostly women who do the work of HR and Talent Acquisition on a daily basis. These are SHRM members, who might go to a national conference, state conference and definitely attend local meetings every once in a while. They are in the trenches every day, fighting the good fight, trying to make organizations better through great people practices. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.

4. The Why We Hate HR pros. These the bottom ten percent folks.  These are the HR and Talent pros that make the organization hate HR. They use their power in HR for bad, not good.  They take out their crappy, meaningless lives on unsuspecting employees.  These folks should be hung publicly. They work to bring down the entire function of HR as a whole, but think they actually do good HR work.

I try to remember this scale when I talk to HR and Talent pros around the world.  Most just want to do better, and most are seeing problems and issues for the first time.  It’s not that they “don’t get it”, they have never seen it.  It’s there first time.

Someone might be very experienced in HR and Talent, but seeing something for the first time, or have made the decision to try something they have never tried.  As a first ten it’s my role, I believe, in the industry to help those folks in any way I can to get better.  That helps the entire profession to get better.

So, what does this all mean?

I want to encourage HR and Talent pros to reach out.  If I can’t help you, I’ve got great friends who can.  The community will help you get better, if you really want to move your organization forward.  We love success stories!

At one point in time we were all first timers doing this HR and Talent thing.  We either learned through trial and error, or through someone helping us that had already experienced what we were trying to do.  The cool part about the community I hang out with, is we all remember our first time, and want to help you with yours.

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