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Why We’re Thankful for HR: The Workforce Institute Weigh-In

This month for The Workforce Institute Weigh-In, members of our advisory board share their gratitude for HR professionals, in honor of Thanksgiving in the United States.

The Workforce Institute Weigh-In for November 2022: Why are you thankful for HR?

“I am thankful for HR because, when positioned correctly, it is the guardian of tone and culture — irrespective of the short-term imperatives for an organisation. Thus, it can hold firm and steer the people agenda in support of the business strategy, at moments when P&L [profit and loss] holders might be tempted to deprioritize the employee experience in exchange for short-term results.” — Natalie Bickford, chief people officer, Sanofi

“I’m thankful for the great HR folks who don’t make headlines. HR is a lot like the CIA. When they do good work for our people and organizations, you never hear about it. But when they screw up — don’t handle a situation well or fail to stand up for employees — they cause harm that puts a negative spotlight on everyone. So, I’m thankful for the HR people doing the good work, focusing on developing and supporting their people, and making their organizations the best they can.” — Kate Bischoff, employment attorney, k8bisch, LLC

“I’m thankful because HR keeps an eye on the people issues that other leaders may overlook due to their focus on their own areas of expertise.” — David Creelman, CEO, Creelman Research

“My job affords me the opportunity to work with HR professionals from different industries far and wide, and what I’ve learned about the amazing people that make up this profession is nothing short of awe-inspiring at times, especially in the last few years. Thank you, HR, for being the glue that has held workplaces — and people — together through one of the toughest times in history.” — Julie Develin, co-host, The People Purpose Podcast

“With mass layoffs happening at so many companies just before the holiday season, this is a challenging season for HR. The analysis, decisions, communication, and follow-up that accompany ending someone’s employment are heavy burdens to carry. HR professionals do much of the lifting on this while grappling with their own survivors’ guilt and helping others navigate the workplace without their colleagues and friends who were let go. It isn’t joyful and it doesn’t feel good. So be kind and check on your HR friends, because many of us are struggling. I am thankful for kind and caring HR professionals who see the humanity in each of the employees and do their best to meet each person at the point of their individual need. I am thankful for HR professionals who challenge their own bias and push to make workplaces more inclusive and safer for those typically ignored and/or intentionally left out. I am thankful for HR professionals who keep fighting against the negative stereotypes and misconceptions of our profession. I will continue to see fully the difficult place that HR occupies and navigates in business. I will continue to advocate for HR to have a clear, loud voice in business. I will continue to do my best to represent well, as part of the spectrum of the HR profession. And I am thankful for the privilege to do this work.” — Sarah Morgan, CEO, BuzzARooney, LLC

“I’m thankful for HR because it is the intersection of many ways that businesses add value to their people. We’re employee safety, training, development, compensation, and so much more!” — Joey V. Price, co-host, While We Were Working podcast

“For me, the opportunity to write about HR and organize interviews with HR people is a gift. This team has given me helpful tips and ready-to-use examples about how to help develop people — not only in my country, but also in different cultures and environments. HR gave me the opportunity to create, to define my path on positive psychology, for example. HR for me is a synonym of grit, a way to implement objectives that I can meet with passion and perseverance for long-term and meaningful goals, related with career, talent, people, with a book, and with international collaboration.” — Ivonne Vargas, award-winning journalist and bestselling author, “¡Contrátame!” (Hire Me!)

To hear more reasons why we’re thankful for HR, listen to the latest episode of the People Purpose Podcast, brought to you by The Workforce Institute!

Share your insights!

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