Every com­pa­ny wants to lead their indus­try, and doing so means remain­ing com­pet­i­tive. With the rate of speed the world expe­ri­ences change in this age that is a very dif­fi­cult propo­si­tion. For an HR pro­fes­sion­al, it is increas­ing­ly more dif­fi­cult to stay ahead of the curve.

So, what are the crit­i­cal pieces to the strategy?
• Agility
• Change Management
• Culture
Know­ing that, how do the three con­cepts tie to one another?

We start with agility.

When it comes to this part of the strat­e­gy, what HR pro­fes­sion­als real­ly want is to be able to adjust at a moment’s notice. But it’s not enough to just be able to make the change. The HR pro­fes­sion­al wants to effec­tive­ly imple­ment the change in the organization.

Of course, that change doesn’t just hap­pen at the drop of the hat. It requires lead­er­ship and even some maintenance.

That’s where change man­age­ment comes into the mix. HR Exchange Net­work con­trib­u­tor John Whitak­er says:
“Change can and will come quick­ly. Change man­age­ment is a help­ful (and some­times hope­ful) way to plan the actions and respons­es need­ed dur­ing a change process. But you must take advan­tage of those times where you are thrown into a chaot­ic sit­u­a­tion with­out the ben­e­fit of planning.”

Final­ly, that brings us to culture.

In address­ing this con­cept, Cul­tureIQ worked with Bloomberg to sur­vey 300 senior exec­u­tives about the Future of Work. In that research, one of the first things they learned is work is becom­ing more com­plex. How? Con­sid­er first that com­pa­nies are becom­ing more agile either by force or organ­i­cal­ly. Exec­u­tives know they have to do this in order to remain com­pet­i­tive. Opti­miz­ing a tal­ent­ed work­force, pre­dict­ing tal­ent needs and keep­ing reten­tion rates high are crit­i­cal to sus­tain­ing your organization’s com­pet­i­tive advantage.

In fact, CEOs rec­og­nized that one of the most impor­tant fac­tors in their organization’s per­for­mance for the next three years was ensur­ing their orga­ni­za­tion was agile.

Cul­tureIQ says agili­ty ranked high­er than oth­er attrib­ut­es like col­lab­o­ra­tion, engage­ment, or innovation.
A company’s cul­ture is imper­a­tive to its strat­e­gy espe­cial­ly when you con­sid­er this fact: cul­ture influ­ences whether tal­ent is attract­ed or not attract­ed to the com­pa­ny. It’s also sig­nif­i­cant in the company’s abil­i­ty to retain their best employees.

Accord­ing to Gallup, 4 in 10 U.S. employ­ees strong­ly agree their organization’s mis­sion and pur­pose makes them feel their job is impor­tant. Furthermore:

“By dou­bling that ratio to eight in 10 employ­ees, orga­ni­za­tions could real­ize a 41% reduc­tion in absen­teeism, a 33% improve­ment in qual­i­ty, or in the case of health­care, even a 50% drop in patient safe­ty incidents.”
Gallup has stud­ied orga­ni­za­tion­al cul­ture and lead­er­ship for years. They find some orga­ni­za­tions have dif­fi­cul­ty in suc­cess­ful­ly estab­lish­ing their “ide­al” cul­ture and attribute that to the fact that cul­ture is con­stant­ly in flux and is not the same one moment to the next.

Ear­li­er this year, researchers looked specif­i­cal­ly at how HR lead­ers fit into the process of chang­ing culture.
“Our ana­lyt­ics show that in the world’s high­est per­form­ing orga­ni­za­tions, HR lead­ers play a cen­tral role in cre­at­ing and sus­tain­ing the cul­ture their orga­ni­za­tion aspires to have. As the stew­ards and keep­ers of the cul­ture, HR lead­ers are respon­si­ble for inspir­ing desired employ­ee behav­iors and beliefs — and in turn, real­iz­ing the per­for­mance gains of a thriv­ing culture.

By own­ing their piv­otal strate­gic and tac­ti­cal roles in shap­ing work cul­ture, HR lead­ers can cul­ti­vate excep­tion­al per­for­mance and prove to senior lead­er­ship that they deserve a seat at the table.”

For HR, Gallup set forth three roles that explain how lead­ers influ­ence culture.
1. Cham­pi­on – Exec­u­tive lead­ers cre­ate the vision of the per­fect cul­ture, but HR lead­ers cham­pi­on it. They are respon­si­ble for turn­ing words into deeds.
2. Coach – HR lead­ers, as coach­es, make sure man­agers and employ­ees are on the same page and help the two enti­ties take own­er­ship of the culture.
3. Con­sul­tant – HR lead­ers here con­sis­tent­ly check cul­ture met­rics such as employ­ee engage­ment, cus­tomer out­lines and per­for­mance indi­ca­tors. In this way, HR lead­ers can make sure the cul­ture strat­e­gy stays on track.

By Mason Stevenson
Orig­i­nal­ly post­ed on hrexchangenetwork.com