June 19, 2010

'HR generalist to specialist-Division of labour' by Ria Dua

One of my dear friend, Ria Dua wrote an interesting post in her blog.

She writes "What I have observed is a recent shift in the trend of the profiles being offered to HR graduates .Initially freshers were easily given HR Generalists role. However, lately there has been a shift from Generalist roles to Specialist Roles."

She further adds "The Generalists were doing a good job but suddenly to get things done in a better way, a need for proper division of labor was felt. It was at this point that the specialists came into the picture."

On a purely humorous note, I must add that I once heard a speaker [cant remember the name...sorry] who said " companies are shifting from generalists to specialists because they have realized[Ria-lized] that 'Generalists' were prone to 'Generally' doing nothing!!!!!"

June 14, 2010

Quality Management System & HR

Two days back during the HR Sangam meeting we discussed 'Quality Management System in HR'.
The meeting was facilitated by C Eashwer from Enhance Chennai . One question which might arise in the minds of many while reading this post is 'How HR and Quality management are related???'.

Quality management is a 'participative process' of 'empowering people' to continuously improve the quality of their work.

I would like to believe that it's HR more than any other function which has the responsibility to
'empower people' and help them to be 'participative'.

So that's where HR and QMS meets.

However, the meeting was about how QMS can be implemented in HR. So it's not only about HR playing a key role as a function in Quality Management but also recognizing QMS's role as a function in HR.

I was given a 20 point detailed action plan on establishing a QMS in HR Department. Let me try & outline the points in brief:

  • Form a Steering Committee of members from HR department to assist establishing & maintaining a Quality Management System.
  • Select and appointment a Quality Management Representative[QMR] for designing, developing, establishing and maintaining a QMS relevent to the Company's business objectives.
  • Arrange for a QMS launch evening, to publicize the Quality Management System.
  • Plan for regular Steering committee meeting with QMR for the strategic planning of QMS in HR department.
  • Arrange for a detailed orientation on QMS to all the steering committee members.
  • QMR to draw the collective wisdom from the steering committee members and design a Quality Policy for HR department.
  • As a next step QMR and the steering committee in consultantation with all the HR staff should design and draft Quality Objectives which are nothing but measurable, tangible, verifiable targets to achieve in the major divisions of HR like recruitment, training etc.
  • Now the steering committee should contemplate and come out with a list of 'Quality Activities' in sequence that is from the first HR activity till the last HR activity.
  • Next is the design and development of the Business Process Plan[BPP] of HR. This is nothing but a Flow Chart of A-Z activities of the department with connectivity from one to another.
  • From the BPP, context diagrams for each division of HR can be made.
  • Now the team should contemplate and group and identify the quality procedures from the BPP and context diagrams and come out with a list of Quality Procedures for the department.
  • Upon identifying the list of procedures, the team should start writing the procedures. Each process must have a procedure owner who is responsible for the effective implementation of that procedure.
  • Formation of Steering sub committees like internal communication committee, ,procedure walk throgh committee, documentation committee etc.
  • Now all procedures must be recorded into a manual called 'Quality manual'.
  • Other addition to QM is Quality Work Instructions for each procedure.
  • Have the internal quality audit.
  • Form the Management review committee for active involvement of management staff in supporting QMS in all respects.
  • Effective maintenance of QMS.
The bullet points above serve only as a very broad outline of action plan on establishing a QMS in HR Department.

June 12, 2010

'Redifining HR' by H N Shrinivas

I was invited by one of my HR mentors from college days, Mr G D Sharma, President[HR],BGR Energy Systems Ltd for a session on 'Redefining HR' organized by Resource Focus Management Solutions Pvt Ltd.

The speaker for the evening Mr H N Shrinivas, Sr Vice President, HR and Business Excellence,The Indian Hotels Company Ltd spoke on the topic 'Redefining HR' with a special focus on 'post 26/11 initiatives by Taj Hotels.

It was the second time I heard him speak in a forum. This link will direct you to my detailed post which I wrote during a NHRD meeting last year where he addressed.

I felt the same vibe this time too. Tears rolled down my cheeks as he spoke about the sacrifices from his employees on 26/11. I was not the only one in that emotional state.

So much of effort is put into employee engagement worldwide. It is measured through various means but it can not be mere engagement practices which can enthuse several associates to sacrifice their own lives for the sake of customers.

As H N Shrinivas said in a very emotional state that it's not only the training & development or engagement practices that allows it's associates to feel so belonged to Taj Hotels. It's because of the values and philosophy present in the cultural DNA of the organization.

He focused on how the new generation of workforce like Gen Y & Millenial are at the risk of getting more associated with their professional communities through social networks than with their own organization.

Hence, he advised that HR professionals should make the unchangeable positive elements of the organization even more firm. This will ensure that the future generations can identify with the company's core values forever as it's the values which is going define the culture & identity of the company in the minds of future workforce. Stronger the values & the way they are lived through actions and not mere talks is the way forward to make future workforce associate with their company.

June 6, 2010

My emotions before the first day at work as an HR professional...

Six years back when I came to Chennai, I was not sure of the course[BBA] I took in Madras Christian College. I always wanted to join the Indian Army but I could not join it because of a few personal reasons.

I found a lot of students eventually choosing to pursue a MBA degree. Hence I thought it would make sense to do BBA and that too when it was offered in Madras Christian College. I had a fabulous time in College.

During my second year I made up my mind that I had a personality fit in HR as we got a snapshot about various areas of management very early during the course.

To put it in mushy note, I had a small crush on HR. Time progressed and I learned more about HR through professors, friends, seniors, books and mgmt competitions. Then I felt that it's not a mere crush, it had to be love...love for HR...I am happy it happened....

After my BBA, I worked in a top Indian company as a process associate but could not get an HR role there. After approximately 9 months of great learning and observation as an employee I decided to study further in HR.

I was very lucky to get into Madras School of Social Work where apart from academics I learned a lot from the field works, summer internship and research project.

This gives me an opportunity to thank everyone associated with my life in MSSW :-)

Finally one of the world's fastest growing IT company came to campus and I got the opportunity to become an HR professional.

For me it's not only about being an 'HR professional' alone. It's beyond that. For 5 years I dreamt of being one. I keenly observed workplaces & people through which I wrote many posts in this blog. Many appreciated my blog and I also received criticisms. I remember once being invited in a top HR consultancy firm and being told by their director that I lacked basic HR conceptual skills.

I tried harder to increase my conceptual skill with sheer passion for HR. Hopefully I have improved and I hope the gentleman who rightfully advised me on my conceptual skills is reading this post today. I have huge respect for him and without his guidance this job would not have been possible.

Whatever little[sometimes significant & sometimes insignificant] I achieved through this journey of 5 years is what I value a lot.

Also I am keen to know if my writing changes in the blog as an HR practitioner because I have blogged till date without any work experience in HR.

I am very excited yet a little nervous. A lot I did till date was for tomorrow & beyond. It's tough to articulate how I am feeling today. I immensely enjoyed this wait only with a vision that it will get over one day and I will become an HR professional. And I am just few hours away from that moment.

Will I be able to sleep well today???

Yes!! because I have a certain sense of a 'settling feeling'. But also 'No' because this is another beginning which I wish never ends. I have a deep desire to deliver the best to my company, my team and most importantly my profession.

It reminds me of an Urdu Couplet:

"Sitaron Se Aagey Jahan Aur Bhi Hai,
Abhi Zindagii Mein Imtihaan Aur Bhi Hai"

Beyond the Stars , There are yet Many Worlds,
Many more trials are there, Yet to be Faced in this Life.

At one point of my life I felt that being an HR professional itself would be like reaching the stars. But my real journey has just started. I am going to be introduced to my major learning now. I am looking forward to every bit of it and I will give my best in order to embrace it all.

Let me also take the opportunity to thank everyone who has encouraged & discouraged me throughout.

Let me share a few quotes from Abhijit Bhaduri's books Mediocre But Arrogant & Married But Available which I feel very relevant for myself:

  • As you step into the world of work, you are bringing to it the freshness of ideas and power to change things.
  • Whenever you feel unhappy about something around you, remember, you can improve it. So whether you change it or choose to walk away and just complain-you have made a choice.
  • You have had the education that will tell you what to do and how to do it. But it is only your heart that will tell you why you ought to.
  • Everyday we choose how much we will touch the lives of less fortunate.
  • Never underestimate your ability to make a difference.
  • Whether it is success or failure, remember that 'this too shall pass'.
  • Don't take your business card so seriously that it defines your identity and you feel helpless without it.
  • If you want success, think of yourself, if you want happiness, think of others.
  • Stop asking about the meaning of life and instead, think of yourself as the one being questioned by life. Your answer must consist, not in talk and meditation, but in right action and right conduct.
It's midnight now and I must get some rest before another phase of my life welcomes me. Hope to see some of the brightest dreams tonight so that I can keep myself awake to fulfill them.

PS: Thanks to my Parents, God,All professors and teachers, HR professionals [especially Abhijit Bhaduri, Gautam Ghosh, Rajesh Kamath,G D Sharma, Sudhir Warde], HR bloggers,friends, cousins,well wishers, my dear readers and many more :-)

That magic of 100%

I came across an old video of Harsha Bhogle addressing the students of his alma mater, IIM- Ahmedabad. His speech on 'excellence' is immensely inspiring and I was glued in front of my computer monitor throughout.

Please watch this video which is of over 1 hour duration but certainly worth it.

In case you want to read a summary of the video then refer to the following links from a few impressive blogs:

Link 1

Link 2

Link 3

The links above do an absolute justice of summarizing the video but I feel tempted to make a special mention of the part in the speech where he speaks about 'excellence being a series of 100 %'.

He says "If you give every moment 100% and then wait for the next moment and say “You know what! This is the moment I wanted to give 100% too” and then the next moment turns up and then you say ” Actually this was the moment I really wanted to give my 100% best” . And then you will find the little things in life that makes the difference between the good and great just happen."

Even though Harsha Bhogle works as a cricket commentator yet he chose to give his 100 % even while delivering the speech. Once we learn to give 100 % in one area of our life, it becomes easier to give 100 % into any other area if we choose to be passionate.

June 5, 2010

Happy to be a part of the Sandbox Network :-)

I am delighted & humbled to announce that I am a member of the Sandbox Network now. It is a worldwide network of hand picked achievers below the age of 30 years.

I am certainly below 30 years but being considered as an achiever is pleasantly surprising. The best part of being in the sandbox network is that there are many inspiring young minds in the network. They are from various walks of life like entrepreneurs, researchers, innovators and even blogger ;-)

You can interact, learn, network and participate in interesting events. I am sure it will be fascinating for all.

I have already made some inspiring friends across the world.

Please visit the website http://www.sandbox-network.com/ to get more information regarding application & selection process.

Let's get connected at the Sandbox Network soon :-)