People strategies are key to future success

first_imgPeople strategies are key to future successOn 7 Jan 2003 in Personnel Today The drivers of success in the 21st century will be different from those thatfuelled the mass-production economies of the 20th. Management models that are confined to standardisation, volume, top-downcompliance enforcement and a single-minded focus on cost will not generate theagile, innovative, customer-delighting organisations that will take the prizesin a global economy. We have clear evidence that the ways people are managed and developed havemore impact on performance than any of the other levers available. Investmentin technology, marketing, production, the efficient use of capital and thesupply chain are all vital. But people provide the key to competitiveness. Theyalone can spark the continuously learning, regenerating cultures and capacitiesthat can anticipate ever-rising customer expectations and deliver solutions. We also have effective tools for crafting strategies and practices thatwork. There is a strong body of knowledge and understanding embodied in theCIPD’s ‘thinking performer’ standards, which are continuously developed byresearch and case studies. These guidelines help practitioners put togetherpeople strategies that both support the achievement of today’s businessstrategies, and create the capacity for more ambitious targets in the future. From research into the psychological contract, high-performance workpractices and giving employees a voice, we know the components that lead peopleto contribute their initiative and discretionary effort to the continuous andsuccessful improvement. As a mainstream, daily activity, workplace learning atindividual and team level can play a sparky role in fostering high-commitment,high-performance organisations. Business strategies of differentiation and mass customisation call for theseattributes of progressive people management and development. Across the economy, there are too few organisations implementing progressivepeople management practices. Like rabbits frozen in the headlights of anoncoming car, organisations are failing to match the best practice of theircompetitors. This provides a great opportunity for the many high-quality peopleprofessionals I meet every day to take a lead. Our colleagues in the boardroom and management teams need us to be moreassertive in showing what can be done and how we can make it happen. But weshould not let ourselves get bogged down with administration, jargon and fads.Instead, we should try to answer the big strategic questions facing theorganisations in which we work: What will success look like in the eyes ofcustomers, employees and other stakeholders? How can our people make thathappen? What styles of management and what cultural changes are needed? How canwe assess the our effectiveness? What can we learn from the experience? We should take the lead in designing and implementing the strategies andpractices that will enable our organisations to develop the hard-to-imitatecapabilities that competitiveness demands. And we should tell the world aboutit – particularly in annual reports – so that we draw a true and fair pictureof the drivers of value that go beyond those captured by traditional financialmeasures. People professionals can make that contribution. Now is the time for HRleaders to be bold. Success depends on our effectiveness. Comments are closed. Previous Article Next Article Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more