The HR team has a strong interest in developing relationships with and among employees. This piece presents ways to engage employees through empowerment. It also offers other strategies for building relationships with other members of their team.
The human resources team typically helps with a variety of common functions at the company, including onboarding, responding to conflicts, and helping with similar employee-related matters at the company. However, HR can and should participate in more than merely transactional work for the business. With the right mindset and resources, CHROs can play a central role in boosting employee engagement with bigger-picture initiatives.
CHROs can play a central role in boosting employee engagement with bigger-picture initiatives.
One example is developing a mentorship program facilitated by the HR department. To launch such a program, consider finding a mentor outside of a hire’s department. This action will help acquaint the hire with other aspects of the company to supplement their more focused departmental education. It will also allow for new hires to express their thoughts and concerns as they ease into their new role without fear of judgment that may impact their relationships with colleagues. The non-departmental mentor can serve as a quasi-confidant and allow hires to receive more candid and useful answers.
For current employees, HR should make a proactive effort to receive feedback and address employee goals and concerns. A common practice in this regard is the use of departmental surveys, which often yield some success. Consider complementing this effort with in-depth interviews. Questions should relate to productivity, employee happiness, goals for the future, and suggestions for the company. After the feedback is received, the Chief HR Officer should work with relevant executives and make a case for recommendations designed to address the feedback.
HR should also work to play a key role in engaging the team when an unpopular policy is made in order to temper reactions. For instance, the company may have to increase standards in the workplace environment. As a start in managing the change, provide general information as to why the decision was made. It may also be helpful to present the thought process behind the decision. Showing that the choice was not made lightly will emphasize the importance of the change as well as demonstrate that the interests of the team were considered. Of course, the human resources department needs to be open to feedback and should be willing to talk about the impacts of the policy change.
Showing that the choice was not made lightly will emphasize the importance of the change.
With any major change, if the opportunity exists, consider experimenting on a small scale before rolling out the change to the broader group. This approach can help you weed out problems with the strategy or the change itself. You will also gather useful information that can guide you as you encounter the need for future changes of equivalent magnitude.
Through these efforts, the HR department may see several positive changes. With regards to the interviews and feedback, employees will feel more valued, especially if a recommendation comes to fruition. Consequently, employee productivity may well increase. The staff will also recognize the efforts made by your department and likely become more open-minded as to your department’s future efforts.