An overview of the tensions and dynamics HR leaders face due to structural and systemic factors.

No, not the people.

But in how it is set-up, how it is structured.

HR has become a “catch-all” function with everything and anything related to people.

Somehow, HR is responsible for:

💡 Building and growing people

💡 Ensuring wellness and health

💡 Building diversity and inclusion

HR is also responsible for:

⚡ Documenting policy infractions

⚡ Managing the cost of employees

⚡ Conducting mass layoffs

What other function has such a confused mandate?

▶ Sales is responsible for one thing – get more money.

▶ Marketing is responsible for one thing – get more attention.

▶ Operations is responsible for one thing – get more efficient.

And HR?

🚫 Take care of people. But not too much, in case we need to let them go.

🚫 Build trust with people. But still be the disciplinarians of company policy.

🚫 Go to bat for people. But not if it means raising their wages or improving their title.

🚫 Build more diversity. But not if it threatens the make-up of the executive team.

So… what exactly is mission of HR?

You cannot ask individuals to correct for a problem in organizational structure. A lack of clear direction confuses everyone.

How can we ask HR to give with one hand and take away with the other?

Next Up:

  • In Part 2, we explore the tensions between HR and the core business.
  • In Part 3, we explore the history and origins of HR.
  • In Part 4, we explore the underlying root issues using our Functional Human-Systems Method®️.
  • In Part 5, we explore a possible solution to the HR conundrum.