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Situational decision-making - Lesson 1: your reflections

Benjamin

| 0 Posts

CIPD Staff

17 Jan, 2020 11:31

Welcome to the online community learning space for the lesson: Getting started with situational decision-making. Use this forum to discuss the community reflective activity in the lesson. Read the contributions of others, ‘liking’ those you find helpful and add your unique reflections to the conversation by replying to this post. Click here to return to the lesson page at any time.

Community reflective activity:
From your own experience, how great an influence do people professionals have on business decision making?
Should they have a greater influence?
4639 views
  • This depends on the level of knowledge, expertise and relationship the people professional has in the business. However people professionals often have to rely on accurate intelligence gained from colleagues around the business in order to make informed (or to influence) decisions. Also from my own experience I have found it easier to voice my opinion to influence a decision if trust has been built first.

  • In reply to Ally Weeks:

    Effective roles for people professionals are about preparedness for thinking as a
    member working with leadership teams. Focus on the logic of your arguments and outcomes, acknowledge common errors (that may be used by people who are trained in critical thinking also) and work with collective intelligence and teams to handle complex decision making and lead to more successful business outcomes.
    Development of these skills and competencies may take time within a trusting environment as you suggest.
  • I think a significant consideration is how the people professionals talk to the business. People professionals are usually extremely good at gaining knowledge and education around their specialism but lack the business/financial understanding to translate their thoughts and opinions into a language senior management want to hear/can relate to. The need for people professionals to expand their understanding of business is significant, if they want to be able to influential at a more impactful level.
  • In my Experience, as of now, the influence that people professionals (L&D) have on business decision making is very less. I suspect the following reasons for the situation.

    1. Management not yet realizing the real scope of L&D as it is being overshadowed in HR function. 
    2. Current scenario: Management often found quick fixes in order to close an action item instead to find root causes of any business challenge. 
    3. L&D professionals even having knowledge is lacking the skills required to assess the situation and have a right approach to convince management. 

    Practicing learned skills by experimentation will allow people professionals to clear some of the bottlenecks in the way and they can find success in adding value to organization. People professionals have to know the language of executives and put the proposal in right way to gain advantage which is helpful to them and their organizations.

  • People professionals, in particular Business Partners, were never taken seriously in my last organisation by retail managers, largely because the role appeared out of nowhere one day without any explanation as to what purpose it served as far as business units were concerned. It then became the general consensus that they were there to succession plan, but with no plans shared / no backup from anywhere else, retail managers appointed who they liked, when they liked, for whatever role they liked, which perpetuated this notion that Business Partners didn't actually do / contribute anything of value. The role disappeared altogether within a couple of years

    At some cost, a version was reintroduced with a restructure on the cards & a programme of voluntary redundancy for the business to handle, & their importance was perceived as absolutely paramount

    It's a strange one to look back on - the business missed a trick introducing the role, BPs probably missed a trick introducing themselves & their roles, not to mention the succession planning with senior managers, who themselves missed a trick in helping co-ordinate group/businesswide succession planning. BPs could & should have been trusted on business decision making in terms of succession planning certainly, & although they did little to raise their profiles & work with business units, they deserved overt support from leadership to aid their influence

    Again, a very specific example I know, but my experience in this field is limited!
  • In reply to Tim:

    Great example Tim and thanks for sharing your experience of a Situational decision to disband a valuable function without gathering all the facts and evidence of the actual contribution your BP's made and at great cost if these roles were reinstated at a later date.
  • I believe this depends on the level of involvement the HR department and professional has in organisational plans and decision making, organisational knowledge and the relationships they have with other key members. In my experience senior managers and directors rely on HR for advice on the legal risks on proposed decisions and guidance throughout these, however it is debatable as to what level they have the opportunity to influence the decision. HR professionals have great knowledge on a broad range of areas of organisational performance and development and the ability to view it from various aspects; I believe they should have a greater influence.
  • In reply to Ally Weeks:

    Hello Ally and Tim, it is a great cost and devalue to the business disbanding roles for no valid given purpose. Yes, reinstating the roles would be an advantage possibly in a different way in delivering the services in duties and responsibilities to suit the climate change with the transformation impact of the pandemic Covid-2020 Act. Good thought provoking 'insight' to re-introduce roles and engage in looking into human capital knowledge, skills, experience and professional attributes to benefit in adding value to the business and the individuals.
  • In reply to Ally Weeks:

    how great an influence do people professionals have on business decision-making? I believe people professionals should have a bigger influence overall in businesses. Working in the charity sector I notice this is a barrier quite often which HR professionals experience is breaking into other areas of the business because there is resistance or lack of understanding to what we can do for them or that it has always been done a particular way and so they do not see a need for change.
    However, i believe people professionals hold influence but a foundation of trust and reliability comes first before headway can be made. Advice and guidance often falls on deaf ears if no baseline of trust has been built with managers or within other areas of the business.
  • I think this depends on the organisation and how much 'authority' they give their HR department. In my organisation there are some decisions that even HR cannot make, and it has to go through the chain of command, right to the CEO. However, our HR department tend to play a large part in many decisions made in the organisation, such as implementing new technology, liasing with suppliers for our new technologies. They build the bridge between certain departments.
  • I think this depends on the organisation and how much 'authority' they give their HR department. In my organisation there are some decisions that even HR cannot make, and it has to go through the chain of command, right to the CEO. However, our HR department tend to play a large part in many decisions made in the organisation, such as implementing new technology, liasing with suppliers for our new technologies. They build the bridge between certain departments.
  • In reply to Vikki:

    I agree. In my current experience, the decision is already made and I am asked for my opinion within a narrow remit. Even if you advise of the need for consultation etc, the decision is made. I have been in other organisations where HR are involved more in O&D and decision making and had authority over the department mangers.
  • Influential people professionals are running HR with the bottom line in mind. Getting caught up in process, procedure and transactional HR will render the people department ineffective. The focus or thinking should be around how best can l provide HR support to drive impact?