We act as a resource to help our companies, employees, and ourselves build a better and brighter future.
After 40 years of training and consulting, there are three big lessons I believe every Human Resources team should take to heart to make your impact on the future even more meaningful.
Bless Over Impress
We want to do our very best at building these bright futures. We worry about how our seminars will go and if we’re doing a good job. I’ve felt this too. Early in my career, I had a big presentation for my supervisors and was really nervous about how it’d go. After I finished, one supervisor took me to dinner to give me some feedback. He told me, “You’re a good teacher and trainer. You reach people well, but I have some advice. Seek to bless, not impress.”
I realised that when we aim to impress people our focus is on ourselves. We worry more about the image we portray than the message. Then, when we make a mistake, we think, “Oh no! Did they see that? What did they think of me? Other people don’t make that kind of mistake!” And we start a cycle of self-guessing. We become self-conscious. Then, we end up making more mistakes.
When we focus on others, we live out the principle Start with Heart from Crucial Conversations®. The motives are about blessing and helping others, not about me.
Become the Person You’re Training Others to Be
You’re training others to do more than use communication skills and think about influence. You’re training them to become more effective people driven by mutual purpose (not self-purpose at the expense of others).
We don’t talk about it much in business, but being an HR specialist is really about love. As you train people in your organisation, you teach the skills of loving — to look for mutual purpose first.
As you become the person, you’re training others to be, something transforms you from a good HR specialist to a great HR specialist.
The difference? A great HR specialist trains with conviction. They know in their heart that what they have will help others. Their own lives have been improved by these skills. So, they believe it can better the lives of the people around them.
But rest assured, becoming this others-focused person doesn’t mean being perfect — it means admitting when you’re not. You apologise when you make a mistake. You let others know that you’re still working on your skills. You admit that you don’t always do everything well.
In doing so, you model a person who’s becoming more effective than they were before. You don’t have to “be perfect”. You just have to “be trying”.