Online from: 2004
Subject Area: Human Resource Management
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Article citation: Sara Nolan, (2008) "Problem-solving HR", Strategic HR Review, Vol. 7 Iss: 1, pp. -
Welcome to the November/December issue of Strategic HR Review, the theme of which is problem-solving HR. No function wants to be seen purely as a problem-solver, called in when times are tough but left out in the cold when the organization is trying to make the good times even better. But, it has to be said that it is often in the solving of problems that a function’s value is widely demonstrated, and that in itself is a good thing.
There are several examples in this issue of localized problem-solving that has led to a wider organizational solution. In “Enhancing IQ with EQ at StepStone,”, by Grant Crow, a focus on improving the emotional intelligence of technical staff through behavior monitoring specifically emotional intelligence has been attributed with a significant rise in organic growth. As a result, emotional intelligence is likely to be put on the agenda across the organization’s divisions in Europe. Another localized problem is featured in “AstraZeneca adopts a new approach to team building,” by Emma Keddy and Kevin Charlesworth, and again the solution a behaviors development program is to become the blueprint for team building training in other areas of the organization. In Sandra Murray-Leduc’s “Hbc leverages the power of succession during change,” the talent management and succession planning developed to survive the war for talent was instrumental in getting the retailer through a takeover with minimum fallout. Solving one problem very well eliminated many other potential problems in a different and unanticipated situation.
These examples show that problem-solving can be a profile-raiser for HR. It is important therefore that HR links metrics to its problem-solving activities. Kate Feather of PeopleMetrics provides advice on hard metrics in “Helping HR to measure up,” and demonstrates how employee engagement can provide the link with other business metrics to demonstrate improved business results. Wherever there is a problem, there is an opportunity and for HR this means the chance to truly shine as a strategic business partner.