How Can You Create A Revolution In Your Own HR Career?

I was planning to pen down my thoughts around this subject from quite sometime, but eventually I was not able to get the right title for this post. I was thinking of using "CHANGE" or "DIFFERENCE" instead of using a rather bold word like "REVOLUTION" in the title. 

A mail from our very own Shauna Griffis (aka HR Minion) asking for contributions for the next carnival gave me this ROCK solid word "Revolution". Now my friend Ben Eubanks is hosting the next HR carnival on 8th April and he wanted to ask HR folks as to what they think needs a "REVOLUTION" in HR. 

Taking a cue from the mailer on conversations about advances in the HR space and how to shed light on the topics that nobody else was covering, I thought talking about the HR leadership competency will be the apt subject to create what we say as a "REVOLUTION" in the HR space.

Now friends these six leadership competencies are developed by a great HR thought leader and a guru Dave Ulrich

About Dave Ulrich...

Dave UlrichHR Leader, Thinker and Guru

Dave is credited with the development of the "HR Business Partnership" model and has written many influential books on the HR subject. According to him to tackle the worldwide challenges and economic crisis, HR folks must work and develop these 6 HR leadership competencies to thrive in today's unpredictable economy.

MASTER these Six key HR Leadership Competencies and take your HR career to the next level.

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1. Become a CREDIBLE Activist:

An HR person who can earn and maintain the trust of his employees and managers, while taking strong and proactive business positions. 

“Trust is the lubrication that makes it possible for organizations to work"

​--- Warren Bennis

For HR professionals working in high-performing organizations, it is essential to act as a credible activist. For them their words matter a lot and they will do what they say. For the,m commitment is everything. Such kind of integrity forms the foundation of their personal trust that eventually translates into their professional credibility. 

How to Develop this Competency and Become a Credible Activist in your Organization?

  • Develop STRONG and POSITIVE interpersonal skills to BRAND yourself as a CREDIBLE HR person
  • CREATE and DEVELOP a positive and flexible chemistry with your key stakeholders
  • Act as an INFLUENCER in the decision making process thereby translating it into business RESULTS
  • Take a STRONG position for all business issues which have not surfaced but can prove to be FATAL in future

2. Become a BUSINESS Ally:

An HR person who has a solid understanding of the business financials, strategies and context and uses them to make better decisions. 

I understand that at times it is felt by the top management that HR people does not understand the pulse of the business. They are not number crunchers and do not like to talk about business financials. I wrote a post on this subject and have laid a lot of emphasis on why knowing and understanding this information is the MOST important aspect to create a VALUE of your self and your department in the organization. 

Successful HR leaders invest a lot of time in developing their understanding of the market and business financials so that their opinions are not driven by emotions or from the so called "gut feeling" but they have a clear cut logic and data to support their thoughts and decisions. People at the top expect their HR leaders to think in the context of the business and the global environment. 

How to Develop this Competency and Become a BUSINESS Ally in your Organization?

  • BUILD your knowledge of finance and must FOCUS on execution
  • Get yourself ACQUAINTED with the line function
  • Get MULTI functional experience
  • LEARN how the business operates, margins and costs
  • GET a 360 degree view of the business

3. Become a STRATEGIC Architect:

An HR Person who can take the 'business strategic story' and translate it into HR practices and leadership behaviours

These HR professionals understand the global business context in terms of the social, political, economic, environmental, technological and demographic trends that affects the business either directly or indirectly. They also understand how their industry operates and what are the underlying dynamics in terms of competition, customer and supplier trends. 

With this knowledge they can develop a vision for their business and department for the future which can translate into key business strategies and annual plans and goals. 

How to Develop this Competency and Become a STRATEGIC Architect in your Organization?

  • THINK beyond your role
  • GET out of your comfort zone
  • GET connected to the strategic and transactional requiremnt of the business
  • GET exposure in business development
  • UNDERSTANDING how business makes money
  • KNOW the history of your business and narate it to inspire and motivate your people

4. Become an OPERATIONAL Executor:

An HR person who ensures things happen on time and everytime.

One of the key attributes of an HR Manager is to be an efficient executor. They need to ensure that daliy management taks are taken care of well within timelines. Management and allocation of resources holds key in becoming an operational executor. Stick to your HR yearly calendar and plans and cordinate with different processes or departments so that they all are well aligned to your goals and objectives.

How to Develop this Competency and Become an OPERATIONAL Executor in your Organization?

  • LEAD and ENSURE that all critical plans are completed in time
  • GET the top management buy-in for all your initiatives
  • DELEGATE tasks and make your team members accountable
  • BUILD on high achievement quotient and lead from the front
  • BE a part of active committees in the organization

An HR person who can shape HR practices that deliver talented people and capable organizations

Developing and building organizational capability by creating a strong system and process driven culture. Investing in your core compentencies and doing what you are good and known for. These capabilities include speed, innovation, customer focus, efficiency and creation of meaning and purpose at work. 

Developing and building organizational capability by creating a strong system and process driven culture. Investing in your core compentencies and doing what you are good and known for. These capabilities include speed, innovation, customer focus, efficiency and creation of meaning and purpose at work. 

HR managers can help line managers create meaning so that the capabilites of the organization reflect the deeper values of the organization. 

How to Develop this Competency and Become a TALENT MANAGER in your Organization?

  • IDENTIFY training needs of your employees complete them well in time
  • INVEST time in identifying and developing competencies of yourr people
  • INNOVATE and intregrate HR practices around your business issues
  • DO things differently. Let go the stereotype behavious

6. Become a CHANGE Agent:

An HR person who can make change happen and can help create new cultures, values and expectations

Effective HR professionals develop their organizations capacity for change and then translate it into effective change processes and structures. Ensuring a seamless integration of change processes that builds sustainable competitive advantage. They build the case for change based on market and business reality, and they overcome resistance to change by engaging key stakeholders in key decisions and building their commitment to full implementation. They sustain change by ensuring the availability of necessary resources including time, people, capital, and information, and by capturing the lessons of both success and failure.

How to Develop this Competency and Become a CHANGE AGENT in your Organization?

  • INVEST time in understanding technological advancements and how they can be utilised in your business
  • Building STRONG internal communication channels so as to create awareness on the change
  • DEVELOP on your persuassion and negotiation skills that will help in communicating change effectively
  • CREATE new systems and improve your existing ones

To cut the story short, this is a great time to be in HR as the future looks very promising. As HR professionals, my sincere advice to you is to master these 6 competencies as they will add explicit value to you and the organization. 

Do let me know you which are your weakest competencies and how do you plan to master them. Let me hear your views in the comment section below.

Books by Dave Ulrich

Do You Require Life Skills For Personal and Professional Life?

The October 23rd HR carnival is being hosted by our first time host Ciprian Bortos at the eSkill Blog! Now, Ciprian doesn’t have a specific theme, but he was looking for posts that were specific to HR professionals, and not candidates.

As I was not able to make up my mind on a relevant post for the upcoming carnival so I thought let me not share anything this time. Had I not got an opportunity to attend this two day workshop on “Managerial Effectiveness” by Yadhav Mehra, I would have certainly disappointed you for sure. But all thanks to him for throwing an interesting concept which I am happy to share with you today. In the wee hours as I am getting ready for the second day, I am thankful to him for making my first day a memorable one for me. 

Yadhav introduced a very nice concept of “Life Skills” which formed the basis of our workshop for the next 2 days.

What are Life Skills?

Life Skills are those skills which are useful and highly recommended in both your personal as well as professional life. You ought to use them effectively to succeed in both spheres of your life.


Do you NEED “Leadership skills” for running your family?


Yes absolutely. You need a good leader in the house to run a HAPPY family. Your wife, your children they look up to you for directions. For them, you are the supreme commander in chief who will bail them out from any situation, protect and guide them from time to time. A good leader in the house will have good delegation, planning, confronting and influencing skills. A good leader of the house will use all the tactics to manage his or her family. He will not be scared of taking firm decisions as he understands that eventually his ultimate objective lies in the betterment of his family. They love their families, care for them and think for their well-being.


Is this not in line the Leadership skills that we require in our Corporate Life?


If you Agree with me, Read On…


Do you require “Team Building Skills” to motivate your neighbours and community?




Do you need “Interviewing skills” while you plan to marry, re-marry? Do you require interviewing skills when you plan to hire your driver, your maid servant?


Yes. 100%


Do you need “Conflict Management Skills” for resolving issues with your better half or family?


You better don’t doubt me on this :)


Do you require “Time Management Skills” in Life?


For sure


Do you need “Prioritization Skills” for effective management?




Do you require “skills on effectively managing your boss”?


100% No questions about it.


Do you need skills on “Personal Branding” so that your children aspire and look up to you?




Do you require “communication skills” to make your point clear to your family people?




One of the important points that Yadhav shared was that even if we know that all these skills are required for running both personal as well as professional life, they are never taught in any business school. These schools never teach us how to mentor or coach your child. They don’t teach you how to manage your partner. They never teach you the practicalities or the ground realities which will help you become an effective manager.


Are these skills only restricted to one’s professional life?


Do you require them only at office?


If you attend a workshop on any of these skills, will you not use them while handling a similar situation at home or within your family?


Are you a different person at office and home?


The answers to all the above questions will be a big NO.


To cut the long story short and that I need to get ready for the second day of the workshop, I will leave you with a thought.


Do you think these Life Skills are IMPORTANT in our Life?


My take:


I think YES. They are required. They are required for you to learn to say NO. They are required when you would like to speak to a stranger. These skills are essential for happiness and prosperity. You want your life to be peaceful and rich. Rich in terms of both money and happiness. These skills help you grow in your career and your personal life. The way you manage your personal life reflects on your professional life.


What’s your take on this? Even if you disagree, I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments section below.

Job Description of a Karaoke Artiste

I have this inherent habit of daily reading the newspaper and get restless if by any chance I am not able to do it any day. I feel it is one of my best practices so far as it helps me relate to the world, know what is happening in the society and what are the new trends emerging in the market. Further, it also helps me generate fresh and new ideas for my posts on this blog. So without taking much of your time, let me share what I have for you today.

This news article that I read somehow caught my attention as a) it was like a new thing that I got to know and b) How can I relate it to  Human Resource Management (after all we all are HR Managers & we ought to do make connections) . For those of you, who haven’t checked the link here is the brief:

The post talks about professional karaoke jockey who are hired by nightlife establishments (like pubs, discos etc) to motivate the nervous amateurs to sing and keep up the spirit and tempo alive for them. He will even go, meet and encourage people to participate and sing songs for the crowd while they are been played on an instrument.

What was so interesting about it?

Out of the blues, I thought if I am the HR Manager of a famous disco and my boss asks me to hire a professional karaoke jockey, how would his Job Description (JD) look like.  For those of you who are new to this HR society and less familiar with the HR jargons, a JD is a document meant for clearly laying out the roles and responsibilities, reporting, qualifications, key skills and abilities etc for a particular position in any organization. Before starting the hiring process, we should have a proper JD in place so that it helps us to understand what all tasks one need to perform and accomplish.


So here is what I thought can form basis for this position. Do let me know in case I have missed anything :)

 Job Description of a Professional Karaoke Artiste

Designation: Karaoke Artiste

Team/Department: Music Enthusiasts

Reporting to: Owner/Band Manager

Purpose of Role:

  • To motivate and encourage those who hesitate to sing
  • To ensure crowd participation with good people skills
  • To enhance entertainment and foot falls in the establishment

Challenges and complexity of the Job:

  •  Maintain a cool head even if you find bad singers on stage
  • Controlling over enthusiastic singers without hurting their feelings
  • Ensure proper time allotment for each singer so that none feels left out
  • Should be able to quickly set the mood and vibe as per the place
  • To ensure no dull moment is there at any karaoke night
  • Should not feel bad if people mistake you as waiters or bartenders

KRAs – Key Result Areas

  • Should be a great singer (to be evaluated by a professional singer)
  • Must have a fair knowledge of musical notations and techniques (to be evaluated by a professional singer)
  • Must possess a good knowledge of western and Indian songs (to be evaluated on the job)
  • Must be able to guess songs in case a tune is given to him (to be evaluated on the job)
  • Must be popular (this will be judged by the no of footfalls received by the establishment on that particular night)
  • Must be good in handling people grievances (to be checked by no of customer complaints received against him)
  • Should keep the party going (time of closure of every karaoke night)
  • Should be well versed with all the new technological advancements in the music sector (to be evaluated on the basis of new systems been set up)
  • Any degree