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The travails of HR

14 2 6
14.06.2018

If there is a profession more sought after in the world, everyone aspires to join it. People have different views about their chosen professions, which is more a reflection of their own perceptions and experiences encountered while pursuing those professions. Every person who interacts with someone holding a certain position at a workplace forms his opinion on whether he loves or hates the individual.

Dr Shailesh Thaker, a well-renowned management thinker and trainer in organisational behaviour and development, believes that Human Resource is the most lovable profession. He is the Chief Learning Officer of Knowledge Plus Inc, a highly reputed training firm based in Ahmedabad, India. Dr Shailesh had visited Karachi sometime ago, and his audience was surprised to know about his views concerning HR, generally considered to be the most hated department of any organisation. HR professionals themselves feel that people don’t appreciate them for the services they render.

Realistically, HR professionals deal with the most difficult and complicated part of an organisation – human beings. Unlike machines, human behaviour cannot be predicted with certainty. They have emotions, sentiments, different beliefs, ethnic backgrounds and culture. Apart from this, HR professionals have to deal with government officials, ensure compliance with labour laws and interact with law-enforcement agencies. Besides, they also have investors, the management and board of directors to deal with. There is no way to keep all these people happy.

This article discusses some key, and sensitive, functions administered by HR. These functions are: recruitment, compensation, policy-making and implementation, industrial relations including handling of unions, grievance and discipline handling, job-evaluation, succession planning and training and development.

While managing these functions, HR officials encounter several problems, of which most can be solved through ‘proper communication’ and ‘proper listening’. But some HR professionals don’t possess this trait, as they wrongly perceive themselves to be masters of every situation. Consequently, the person trying to convey something to them gets frustrated and disillusioned, and considers the former ill-mannered and uncouth.

Proper communication can solve many problems. In case there is any query, an HR official should give a ‘legally’ supported and ‘logically correct’ solution. If HR professionals are not sincere with employees and provide false and fake information to them, the employees will start hating them.

Understanding human behaviour is another trait that can help address many problems. Although experience gained over the time........

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