What is the most common stereotype you have heard about HR? HR stereotypes, like all other stereotypes, often emerge from bad personal impressions. People’s perceptions of HR are frequently shaped by their negative experiences with the department or individuals within it. While stereotypes can be unpleasant at times, they exist anyway and it is wise to know how to avoid falling into one. So, are HR stereotypes true? And how should you avoid them?
When The HR Comes, The Party is Over
Dull, strict, and not fun; many people think about these traits when they describe HR department staff. This is probably because HR professionals’ duty involves overseeing employees to ensure that they are doing their job as expected by the company. No doubt, it often gives a sense of them being strict and inflexible, almost as if they do not approve of any kind of fun in the office.
The truth is, HR staff know how to have fun, too. But, it should be noted that HR bears double responsibility: to keep the business out of legal problems and to keep its people safe from toxic, dangerous, and unpleasant environments or events. These responsibilities may ideally intersect to the point where safeguarding employees strengthens the company’s position in the process. When it comes down to it, though, safeguarding the company comes first.
HR is the Firing Machine
The HR manager is probably the first person you get to know once you are employed, and they will also be the last one to see when your tenure ends. HR is known to be the firing machine, since they make the call when an employee is about to be terminated from contract. However, those who believe HR is only a firing squad overlook the reality that the same department is also in charge of recruitment. They also seek to improve the working conditions of their employees.
As an HR, you can bring an end to this stereotype by fostering engagement beyond hiring and firing. Communicate the company’s current training and mentoring programs for skill development. Encourage employees to seek assistance whenever they need it. Employees will know that HR is not the ‘firing machine’ if HR managers actively engage with them beyond the area of recruitment, performance review, and approving leaves.
HR Has the Lightest Workload
When the company is not recruiting new personnel, HR basically has nothing else to do. Has something like that ever crossed your mind? It is common that employees who do not work in the HR field are clueless about what HR job responsibilities are. Only a few fully understand the continuous balancing act that the HR group must accomplish in order to fulfill its responsibilities properly. HR staff do more than just recruiting, approving leave requests, and distributing monthly wages. In fact, HR professionals must deliver seamless administrative services while simultaneously serving as a strategic partner to the business. Additionally, the HR team has to connect with individuals, advocate for employees, and foster continuous improvement.
Therefore, the HR department does not have the lightest workload; it just has sets of specialized job duties that many have not yet understood. If they always look kind and welcoming as if they have no burden about their job, know that they are actually doing their job by maintaining a nice working environment.
These HR stereotypes may not be true, but they do have an impact on how people respond or communicate with HR. If you want to get your company’s leadership and employees on board with its HR efforts, focus on helping them realize the advantages of excellent HR rather than simply implementing policies.