Cut the crap! Talk sense

In our last blog we discussed about the importance of strategic HR and the need of HR getting the Board seat. Taking the discussion forward, if we look at the other Board seat holders, quite a few of them are measured one, on hard numbers such as Chief Executive Officer, Chief Sales Officer, Chief Financial officer and second, these numbers are judged by external stakeholders. For example, a CEO is rated on two parameters, one is top line growth and the bottom line growth and it is the street, which decides how one is faring on that. Most of the times his seat is secured only till the time he is delivering to the expectation of the street. If this is the case, then how will you rate a CHRO? What should be the one objective and measurable number and who will be the ultimate judge of his/her performance?

To take our discussion forward, let us first try and understand the factors of strategic importance to Modern-Day-Organization from a Talent Perspective:

  1. Culture of Innovation – More than disrupting others business, organizations need to have the vision and strength to disrupt their own business to constantly stay ahead of present and future competition. Innovation can be driven by individuals but then the life span of a company would be limited to the span of that individual. Long term survival can only be ensured if the company is able to diffuse innovation in to every nook and corner of the company and this can be ensured only by developing a right culture. Culture is also more overpowering as it cannot be copied easily and hence ensures longevity of an enterprise.
  2. Self-healing Organization – An Organization which can anticipate and adapt itself easily. For instance, if cool user interfaces in a product suddenly trends as the want of the consumer, we should be in a position to not just evaluate it, but also our workforce have to be smart enough to master it quickly. Also, Change is something that happens over a period of time. But self-healing organisations anticipate change or the trend much earlier and hence adaption becomes much easier.
  3. Culture or Adaptive Enterprises is result of two forces – the kind of people we bring in and the atmosphere we enable such as freedom to experiment at work and learn from mistakes, reward system which promotes performance, etc.

In essence, the central theme for a CHRO to ponder about is ‘How to get the best intellect and create a system to harness them?’ This has to be mutually beneficial for the employees and employer. We have to devise a plan to attract the top talent and give them the right platform to grow. Time is critical and does not wait for anyone- quick training and smooth induction into the organization must be ensured to reduce the pain of new employees to settle down. If average work life in a company is 3 years and 6 months is spent on training them, then we have literally wasted 20% of their productive hours. Enterprises need to attract an Intellect who is married to the idea before they join and they work with full passion and feel at home from day one.

It’s a fast pacing world and achieving this could be difficult. While we are running against time, we must ensure that we are able to communicate what we need and the way we work so that there are no surprises for any one. In essence, enterprises need to be like a glasshouse where there is no difference between what happens inside and what one portrays outside. On those lines, the first thought that comes to mind are websites like Glassdoor where employees can anonymously rate their organisation and voice their feedback on an open forum. They can freely converse and share good/ bad/ugly about their work places. Today, with abundant information available on the internet, it’s human tendency to first research on what the employees/former employees of an organization have to say about their experience. This definitely will have a huge impact on their decision to join or not join a company. Hence, can Glassdoor or similar websites help us give that objective yardstick to measure a CHRO? My vote to that question is a YES!

What makes Glassdoor reliable is:

  • Glassdoor is a true reflection of what is happening inside and hence it will save both employees and employers from expensive cost of experimentation.
  • Glassdoor is able to bring out the culture of an organization in a very effective and transparent manner.
  • Glassdoor is a score (Hard Number), which is the outcome of Organization culture, policies, values et al.

In conclusion, CHRO’s rating to Glassdoor rating should be linked since it is measurable, transparent, and objective in the same fashion as the other Board Members of an organization are measured!

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