The HR world is a complex beast, mainly because there is no right or wrong answer for an HR professional to solve a challenge. Generally, the best course of action is to delve into your experience, weigh up the pros and cons and just go for it – after all, you are dealing with people and they can be an uncertain bunch.
But how can you manage uncertainty? What has worked for others in the past? What advice can you take on board to tame the beast?
I’ve asked the question and got some answers. Here are the best pieces of advice that I gained directly from LinkedIn users. I’ve not mentioned the person for data protection purposes.
1. How not to demotivate your star performers
“Recruitment biases and rigid structures have a profound impact on your star performers by perpetuating negative cycles. These cycles will eliminate or demotivate star performers, especially those who have non-linear profiles or scattered CVs or even a bad reference.”
Which brings us to the next point.
2. References should be taken with a pinch of salt
“Just because a candidate or employee has a bad reference it doesn’t mean they won’t be a good hire. The reference may be from an unethical employer (who often have low retention rates – which we never crosscheck when scrutinising references), or they are from a company with a different culture that made it problematic for the employee to settle within.”
3. Learn from excellence rather than focus on failure
“Far too many organisations fixate on the one event where things went wrong rather than learn from excellence. You can learn more from success than failure so if something does go wrong, move on quickly, repeat excellence and improve quality.”
4. Is a degree really necessary?
“A large proportion of positions require candidates to have a degree, but are they really that necessary? In the past, I’ve seen many promising candidates overlooked just because they don’t have a degree, yet they have relevant experience (both volunteering and professional) and great transferable skills.”
“A candidate doesn’t have to tick every box in your checklist to be the “best fit”. A job can be learned. By being so narrowly focused and inflexible, many companies miss out on employees who are great team players, change agents, innovators, and progressive thinkers.”
5. Respect my authority… or not
“I’ve noticed many HR professionals complaining about not having employees with a creative and innovative mindset and found that they often restrict their selection process to the existing HR network. This tendency creates a vicious cycle of recruitment of HR employees whereby businesses are deprived of better candidates.”
“Furthermore, recruiters should avoid using their authority as recruiters to transfer their (often limiting) beliefs on applicants during interviews. For example, arrogant behaviour.”
6. Challenge the status quo
“Use your HR position to challenge the status quo within the business and society in general. Generate more conversations, train employees about empathy and ethics at work. This will teach people to see more similarities rather than differences, ultimately creating unity and reduce inequalities. For example, initiatives for gender equality in the workplace.”
7. Careers aren’t always linear
“It’s a fact that people change job roles often and sometimes even professions altogether. Therefore, HR professionals should consider the transferable skills that a candidate brings to the table rather than if they have three to five years’ experience in a similar role. Surely skills such as ingenuity, drive, and potential are better qualities to have than something that can be learned in a couple of months.”
8. Don’t let data overpower you
“HR teams have caught up to other departments in that they now get overwhelmed with data. At the end of the day, HR is about people and their wellbeing rather than number crunching. Let your HR system do the numbers while you focus on your employees.”
Encountering challenges on a daily basis is a common theme in the world of HR and as professionals, we are all prone to reverting back to previous experiences to solve these challenges.
However, it’s sometimes worth exploring new avenues to overcome these stumbling blocks – reach out to professionals in your industry and share struggles with colleagues to gain greater insights and new ideas to overcome your obstacles.
Alternatively, feel free to contact us and we’ll give you a few pointers too.