HR Hartley

We must get to grips with the mundane

Someone once said that Hell was just as likely to be found in clean,
carpeted, warm and well-lit offices, populated by quiet men with white collars
and cut fingernails, as it was to be filled with little demons with pitch
forks.

It may have been CS Lewis, or it may have been the HR staff sitting around
you as they field yet another call on some trivial work issue.

One of my darling team said they were sick of people phoning them up to
answer trivial questions when they could be ‘getting proactive’.

I took this individual aside and in my own inimitable fashion told them to
bloody well stop whingeing. Surely being proactive would involve putting
systems in place to ensure that staff stopped asking you if the death of their
budgie merited a couple of weeks off?

Does the phrase ‘a bad workman always blames his tools’ spring to mind?
Thank the Lord that things such as statute books remain firmly closed to my HR
team.

The last thing I want is my HR staff trying to take on complicated things
such as legislative changes, when they can’t even successfully persuade workers
to look on the intranet or read their employee manual.

Sorry guys – you are in a people service, and the long and short of it is
that people are morons who need to be taken by the hand and led from the cradle
to the grave. So take a deep breath, fix that HR smile on your face and come to
work every day prepared to go walkies.

Hartley, our new weekly columnist with strong opinion, is an HR director
at large

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