October 3, 2005
News & Opinion: HR and BusinessWeek
The October 10, 2005 issue of BusinessWeek features the cover story on HR. I found a sidebar on What not to do especially enlightening. The four most common pitfalls are:
Inventing Make-Believe Metrics HR is far too often judged on activity rather than results-meaningless measures like how many executives attend development classes. Employees are smarter that that, and exercises with a little follow-up are big morale busters. LESSON: Leadership guru Jay Conger-author of Growing Your Companys Leaderssuggests tracking the performance of the people a manager promotes. If they dont do well, the manager is failing. Criticizing Rather Than Praising At its core, almost all HR training is focused on finding out whats wrong with you and fixing it. Its fine to work on mitigating weaknesses, but research shows better results for those who focus more time on natural strengths. LESSON: Marcus Buckingham-author of First Break all the Rules and The One Thing you Need to Knowfound in his own research that the best managers spend 80% of their time trying to amplify their peoples strengths. Copy them. Importing the Savior Consultant RHR International says companies go outside to fill 40% of CEO slots-at a cost of 1 million to $3 million each. But newcomers have a 40% to 60% chance of failing in the first 18 months LESSON: It takes effort, but the best companies grow their talent in-house. Hewitt Associates says 85% of leading companies tapped homegrown executives for CEO. Focusing on the Fad There is no software you can buy off the shelf, no consulting guru who can jet in to solve all your recruiting and training needs. But companies keep shelling out big bucks to find one, anyway. LESSON: Think about what your company needs, drive hard toward that goal, and be patient. Bellwether General Electric has been actively incubating leaders since at least the 1950s.I hope this helps you because it gave me some ideas.