Integrating theory and practice in HR

Integrating theory and practice in HR
While it gave me some satisfaction, later I came to realize that what I have become is more of a 'mechanic' and not a scientist or even an engineer. From that point, I made a more conscious effort to apply theory to practice and the following thought fragments are based on my learning from that effort (and from experience of young HR specialists I mentored) during the last decade.

“Those who say theory and practice are two unrelated realms are fools in one and scoundrels in the other”, I came across this quote (from ‘Letters of Ayn Rand’) some time ago, and it reminded me of an issue that has taken up quite a bit of my psychological space over the last decade – that of integrating theory and practice in the domain of Human Resources (HR).

When I was doing my MBA in HR, there was no doubt in my mind that the theory and practice in the domain of HR, should be, and can be integrated. But, when I started working and watched ‘real’ HR professionals in action, I experienced a lot of cognitive dissonance. Most of the HR Professionals (especially, those who have taken their behaviour science education seriously), acted as if they had some sort of split-personality disorder. When they are in their Personality 1 (the dominant personality) they carry out their jobs without any application of their behaviour science knowledge and when they are in their...

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Prasad Kurian

is a senior Human Resources (HR) leader with deep expertise in Talent Management (TM) & Organization Development (OD) and he is the author of the recently published book 'Life in Organizations - Paradoxes, Dilemmas and Possibilities'. Prasad's career has been a characterized by a conscious effort to stand at the intersection of theory and practice in HR. You can see many examples of this is his blog on HR and OD titled 'Simplicity @ the other side of Complexity' (http://prasadokurian.blogspot.com).

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Author

Prasad Kurian

is a senior Human Resources (HR) leader with deep expertise in Talent Management (TM) & Organization Development (OD) and he is the author of the recently published book 'Life in Organizations - Paradoxes, Dilemmas and Possibilities'. Prasad's career has been a characterized by a conscious effort to stand at the intersection of theory and practice in HR. You can see many examples of this is his blog on HR and OD titled 'Simplicity @ the other side of Complexity' (http://prasadokurian.blogspot.com).

July 2022 Issue

Building Better Work Culture -July 2022

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