Say you decide it’s time to get in shape. You start a workout plan and a diet. You are willing to do whatever it takes: jog, eat right, go on brisk walks, lift weights, the works. But as for those sit ups and crunches? Nope! Not happening!
We know it’s such a critical part of the body, however, it’s uncomfortable to work on our core and the results are so hard to see. It’s not like you’re ever going to get that elusive six-pack anyway, right? So, why bother?
Side Note: have you ever participated in a Twitter Chat? They’re amazing. The Human Resources space has quite a few good ones, including HR Hour and SHRM Next Chat. The cool thing about a Twitter Chat is that it’s fast-paced, so your initial quick thoughts are usually what you are going to tweet.
On the HR Hour Twitter Chat, a question was posed:
“How best would you describe how HR supports the world of work?” All of a sudden, it dawned on me! HR is the core, the abs, of the organization. Here are a few reasons why:
It’s Tough to See Immediate Results
Unlike most other muscles, building a strong core is also dependent on many indirect factors, like a great diet. If you do not eat right while doing those crunches with regularity, seeing a toned core will be unlikely. It requires a continuous effort.
Similarly, if an organization does not have a continuous and holistic commitment to the HR function, seeing results will be unlikely. In business, the first question that goes into any continued commitment (or investment) is, “What is the ROI?” That question is often followed up by, “How quickly can that ROI be realized?”
Take, for example wellness, programs. Stephen Miller of SHRM stated the following, “Given the challenges of showing that wellness programs produce a sustained return on investment through a reduction in health claims cost, proponents of wellness initiatives are increasingly pointing to the indirect benefits of these programs.”
It is my belief that the ROI associated with HR functions can be direct, but also indirect. And let’s not forget the many indirect factors that go into building up those strong core muscles.
The Function that Benefits Many Other Functions
This quote says it all. And we can easily adjust the quote to say, “HR is the part of an organization that exists so all of the functions of the organization will work in harmony.” Departments, managers, leaders and employees depend on HR like no other function of the organizational body. From onboarding, compliance, employee relations, benefits and compensation; every person and/or department will work with various HR specialties at some point to keep the organization and/or themselves in sync.
If the core (HR) is not strong, the organization will soon see other parts (of the body) start to break down.
Elite Athletes (Organizations) Realize the Importance of HR
Over and over again, if you look at the characteristics of a high-performing organization, functions related to HR are at the top of the list.
The American Management Association completed a survey asking respondents about the characteristics they associated with high performance. High-performing organizations were defined by revenue growth, market share, profitability, and customer satisfaction. The characteristics of higher-performing organizations were identified as the following:
- Their leaders are clear, fair, and talent-oriented. They are more likely to promote the best people for the job, make sure performance expectations are clear, and convince employees that their behaviors affect the success of the organization.
- Their employees are more likely to think the organization is a good place to work. They also emphasize a readiness to meet new challenges and are committed to innovation.
- They are superior in terms of clarifying performance measures, training people to do their jobs, and enabling employees to work well together.
- They are more likely to adhere to high ethical standards throughout the organization.
As you can see, each of these characteristics are uniquely tied to HR.
Similar to how a strong HR adds value to any and all organizations, a strong core is important for bodies. Dr. Gabe Free, a D.C.-based strength and conditioning specialist stated, “Even distance running, where people don’t always think that core is important, it’s actually key for posture.”
HR practitioners must know that they are the core of the organization. They are needed for harmony, posture and strength.
Fun Fact: It is also important note that a strong core does not always equate to a six-pack! However, we should still strive to do the best we can!
Join us for the next Twitter chat! What are some other Business and/or HR related Twitter chats that you like?