The Obsession That Is Killing HR

I have a big idea. If it gets a little traction it might change how human resources work is done in the future. It’s not a new concept, but I believe the time is right for someone, particularly in Healthcare HR to speak to this opportunity.

Ideas are meant to solve problems, and my friends I see significant problems in the Healthcare HR space. I see it in my own career path, and I see an abundance of time and energy being wasted everyday on this problem.

There are two parts of my idea and each one must be executed well in order for it to work. Let’s briefly walk through each component of my plan.

The Problem
One of the most significant problems I see in human resources today is our obsession with transactional work. While there is a non-stop stream of “we need to be strategic” talk in just about every HR meeting I attend, I rarely see this put into action. Why is that? Further, is Healthcare HR somehow behind the curve on the transition to actually being strategic?

Yes, there are progressive human resources teams in healthcare, yet the struggle for us all (inside and outside of healthcare) to break away from focusing on task after task continues. How do we move past this hurdle?

In my organization we’ve made huge progress separating out transactional work, and making it more streamlined and efficient than ever. What was the secret to our success? We had the front line HR team map out where we were failing, and what we should do to make improvements. 

Genius, right? Well, no. Fortunately our team is very engaged and did a terrific job of evolving not only our HR processes, but our culture too.

The second strategy is the most challenging of all for HR leaders to implement. This requires the discussion about transactional work and routine processes never to enter into conversations about strategic work. 

Time and time again the HR strategy meetings I’ve been involved with end up falling back on the routine topics of transactional work that “somehow” continues to get in the way. Why do we do that? Is it comfort in discussing old routine items? Maybe. We’ve been talking about them for decades, so it is probably easy to fall back into old (read here –> bad) habits.

Guess what…if you don’t bring up transactional work, it doesn’t get in the way. Stop talking about it and you’ll find yourself with plenty of time to talk strategy.

How About You
Have you tried to push transactional work away from the strategic meeting agenda? Did it work? If so, please share your approach, as there are so many (including me) who could benefit from your success story. 

If not, take a hard look at the words you’re saying in your meetings, and decide if you’re adding value or simply adding noise.

I’d love to hear from you.

No Excuses.

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