HR practitioners are continuously striving to find the golden ticket that buys them access to the privy circle of senior executives who manage the cash, who take the decisions, who ostensibly wield the power.  Reviewing how others earn their spot is typically a combination of technical know-how combined with a proven ability to influence and stand by the impact of significant decisions.

 
I read a related article recently which questioned whether those in senior HR roles are fully prepared to put their money where their mouth is. How many HR practitioners are confident enough in their function’s processes across their business to subject themselves to the highest level of public scrutiny which may ultimately result in criminal culpability?  And, is this really what it is going to take to earn credibility at the top table?
 
HR is more art than science, dealing in shades of grey with a fluid, dynamic and unpredictable asset.  It is in engaging empathetically, providing the organisational ‘glue’ that most of the value of the function is added.  Admittedly it is intangible value, it does not translate to a line on a balance sheet, but the opportunity cost of doing without will translate into a bottom line cost in reduced productivity.  There isn’t a golden ticket, there is earning respect – often proven by supporting the business through difficult decisions or incidents – and proving the worth of the function through its deliverables.  Any support function by its nature supports the running of the organisational machine; it is the oil that makes the wheels run smooth.  The slicker the processes, the more well-oiled the machine; the better oiled the machine, the more productive it is.  Good drivers use good oil; make sure yours is the brand of choice!
 
Chloe Watts, Head of HR Practice at Alium Partners, a global provider of interim management solutions
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