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From HR Officer to HR Manager: what it really takes

From HR Officer to HR Manager: what it really takes

by Anne Van de Catsye |

Making the leap from HR Officer to HR Manager: what it really takes.

Congratulations! The fact that you decided to read this blog makes you “HR Manager material”. Because you have an interest to progress, a curiosity to learn, an open mind to explore new ideas. This attitude is the fuel for making a successful career in HR land.

Cause lets be frank: climbing the HR ladder is not for the faint hearted! HR is still perceived as a power bastille, where weird looking creatures decide over pay raises and bonuses, create horrifying torture tools for managers, hire and fire without any clue about business needs and people motivations … why would one ever want to be part of such a disconnected group of weirdos that no one likes?

  1. Exactly, quite some marketing still needs to be done, so that is your number one challenge in becoming a successful HR manager: winning the hearts and minds of the business! Learn about business challenges and needs and think of how you can contribute with your HR expertise, be visible and connect with all employees: find smart ways to make the distance between people and HR as small as possible without any barriers to come and ask for your help. Your personality, your communication style, your energy will be key in marketing the HR function.
  2. Deliver what the business needs, not just what people ask. If you behave like a servant, that’s what you will become … As an HR Expert, you need to have a proactive view on what the business challenges are and what needs to be done to stay competitive and profitable from an organisational and people point of view: talent and performance management, compensation & benefits, workforce planning … Business leaders will come to you and tell you what they want. Don’t just act upon their requests, but challenge their thoughts and guide them through your HR vision and strategies with powerful questions. Be a consultant: don’t tell them what the time is, but challenge them to find out themselves! 
  3. Don’t waste your time reinventing the wheel: so many great HR folks out there have been creating really good stuff for decades. Become a Jedi in finding great knowledge platforms, in customizing existing stuff, and spend most of your time in engaging within your company during the delivery of HR services and products, instead of wasting valuable time in building tools and templates.

So, what does it really take to become a really impressive HR Manager? It’s not about knowing more, it’s all about the HOW: connecting and engaging is the secret here!

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