HR is author of own misfortune

Paul Pagliari advises HR professionals to “determine and demand to be at the centre of business” (Professional Agenda, Personnel Today, 14 June). To address this we need to ask: why is it, with a track record of helping businesses through their stickiest issues, that HR still remains in second place on the executive team?

In recent research by Ashridge Management College and business psychologists, OPP – Closing The Gap, which looks at the behavioural preferences of 8,000 future business leaders around the world – only 14% of the group identified concern for people as a primary driver of their own behaviour. The other 86% identified logic and purpose as more important than ‘valuing the individual’.

Business is hurtling through a changing environment, so it’s not surprising that cool and logical hands are chosen to guide the business. However, HR professionals are actually reinforcing the process that is stopping them gaining consistent access to the top table. They are helping to select the leaders of tomorrow, and they are choosing the ‘logical thinkers’ over the ‘people valuers’.

Philip Hendrick
Head of consultancy

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