Monday, May 19, 2014

Line of Fire

I remember the first time I realized that not everyone was excited about moving into leadership. I was a very green young manager and my hospital had a number of management vacancies. I couldn't believe that we didn't have any internal applicants. In fact, it would be safe to say I was stunned! How could this be? No one wanted a "great" management job?

I Get It Now
As it turns out leadership is difficult. In fact, leading in a mediocre way is tough, let alone trying to actually be effective. I spend a lot of time on this blog pushing for effective leadership behavior, but I know it's a heck of a lot easier to write about it than it is to do it.

But that doesn't mean I'm not going to keep trying to get better every day.

The Firing Squad
One of the ways I've found to be effective in my role as a leader is to step in front of the proverbial firing squad on behalf of my team. As we all know, Human Resources lives in a fishbowl. All of the hiring managers, employees, and executives can see our every move. They all expect results, and candidly they deserve them. That is the opportunity of working in HR, not the burden!

The problem is that sometimes the team around us can become an easy target (read here --> scapegoat) for operational problems. It is in those moments that I believe HR leaders need to intervene. Simply letting our staff take all the heat (often it isn't even justified) while we hide in our offices is just lame.
I hate being lame.

Let me be clear...I'm not suggesting our team members cannot handle criticism, complaints, or areas that need to be addressed. What I am saying is that when you know the "noise" you're hearing about your team is inaccurate, you better get your butt out of your chair and stand up for them. 

How About You
It's no fun being in the line of fire as leaders. Imagine what our team members are going through? What must that feel like? More importantly do they know you care? Show them you are behind them 100%, and take a few bullets for them. Sometimes they won't even know you're doing it....but you'll know...and that's pretty important too.

I"d love to hear from you.

No Excuses.

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