I had the pleasure of hosting a panel for SHRM-Atlanta last week during our Power Breakfast. It was really a blast being able to speak with Top HR professionals and Business Leaders from Assurant, Comcast and Kimberly Clark.
Last week, I discussed the new competency model SHRM unveiled this past summer at the annual conference.
Competencies have been on my mind lately. One of the questions I asked the panel was this:
What are the top 3 competencies you think are important for HR professionals to master in order to become a true business leader?
Here are the collective answers from the panel:
2. Great communication skills
3. Great listener
4. Understand how your business makes its money
5. Strategic thinking
6. Root cause problem solving
7. Sales mentality
8. Courage (to say no, when necessary)
9. Ability to put together a winning team
10. Understand all facets of the business
What was so interesting to me as the moderator as not one HR professional or one business leader talked about HR Knowledge.
So, for me I think its crystal clear...to be successful today in HR you need to BE A BUSINESS PERSON FIRST AND AN HR PERSON SECOND.
I know, the next question, HOW do you get some of the competencies listed above. I can only speak from experience for myself and other colleagues but here is a short list:
1) Get an MBA and don't specialize in HR
2) Walk around in the business and ask good questions
3) Spend time with sales
4) Make your CFO your BFF
5) Practice leadership in a volunteer role
How have you learned the business? How have you learned to put together a winning team? How have you acquired some of the competencies I mentioned above?