How do you define Leadership in HR in the present environment?
SK HR leadership in the present environment is at a significant inflection point for several reasons -
i) Most workplaces are moving into 'hybrid' models combining physical and virtual presence of employees and that has a downstream impact on all people practices, employee engagement, culture preservation etc.
ii) At the same time, there is an accelerated path to be taken to become high tech in HR because as we have seen during Covid-19, High tech can enable High touch.
iii) Investments will need to be made in right organisation design along with capability building of leaders and HR teams to manage not just the present change but also to prepare the organisation for the future.
iv) In India, there is active discussion on changing labor laws including the treatment of gig workers and such changes also have an impact on benefits administration as well as workforce planning.
v) I believe that companies must play a role in nation building and HR leaders have the unique opportunity to lead their organisations to participate in public private partnership programs that enable employment and skilling for marginalized sections of society.
These parallel waves of change need to be understood, assimilated and implemented in the most optimal manner with a vision to be the best place to work for the diverse workforce of the future. In doing so, there is an opportunity for HR leaders to innovate and be champions of innovation for the organisation.
BM According to you, what should be the competencies of a good HR Leader?
SK Good HR leaders are entrepreneurial, decisive, empathetic employee champions, understand business priorities well, perceptive to see around corners and of course have the functional expertise to take sound judgment calls that move the company forward positively.
How you visualize the HR leadership role different from than it did before 2020?
SK I see a much larger competency requirement for understanding and leading with technology, much more co creation of programs with the new generation of workforce, bigger role for coaching and facilitation skills supported by upskilling programs for leaders and people managers. I see the HR leader's role as the biggest championof an inclusive, innovative culture along with the CEO.