Monday, December 24, 2018

#thehotseat with EM

In order to drive engagement amongst group members, Administrators of the HR Group Nigeria (HRGN) WhatsApp community would put a professional on the hot seat for members to ask questions. Recently, it was my turn to be on that hot seat! Neekeh Adigun anchored. While I look forward to reading your comments, enjoy the excerpts from the interview.


Anchor:
With an attitude of gratitude, knowing the man on #thehotseat tonight is a great privilege. Tapping from his wealth of knowledge is another privilege. Please join me in welcoming Emmanuel Michael, SPHRi the HRGN way.

EM:
Good evening everyone and thank you for having me on #thehotseat tonight. #HRwithEM

Anchor:
Kindly take us through the journey of becoming the HRM you are today. Did you study Human Resources or Marketing?

EM:
The story is very long, but I will try to make it short.

I tell people that I am a stenographer turned human resources practitioner.

I studied stenography, then moved on to read management, moved on again to study information management and certified as a network engineer before HR happened on me. HR happened on me in November 2003 when I applied for the role of IT Manager at Le Meridien Hotel in Abuja, the FCT. Being my very first HR role, I was, i would say lucky, my previous administrative experience counted for something and I was appointed Assistant HR Manager and Lead HR for the organisation.

I started studying HR from then on, and I am still a student of HR.

Anchor:
This is a 3 in 1 question.

What has been the main difference between your former role (Head, HR) and the present (Head of People Experience)?

Can we say it is just a change in nomenclature, or change in/addition to job scope?

If there has been a change in job scope, kindly highlight a few of these changes or additions.

EM:
Thank you.

The main difference is the focus for my function. The focus initially was getting the best out of the "resources", and now the focus is to not treat those who power the operation of our organisation as resources but "people" who have a feeling.  In treating them as people, I enable the line managers and leadership to create the right experiences that enable these people become the best they can be which in turn positively impact our operations.

This diagram summarises what I do in my Current role:

Anchor:
Employment for attitude and training for skills (especially for leadership positions). Considering the fact that you are part of the top management team.

In an interview panel for top executive positions, how do we achieve this, what should we look out for, and lastly how do we convince the other executives on our findings when we see that the candidate doesn't fit in with the right attitude.

EM:
When hiring for any position whether leadership or junior role, the HR professional should understand that their role is to facilitate the process.

Facilitating this process begins with the HR professional ensuring that line managers know exactly what to look for in a candidate that would match the job profile. If we have this understanding, there is then no need for the HR professional to convince any member of the panel, as we all know what we are looking for.

Now, to hiring for a leadership position, the technical part or skill is usually taken for granted as it is expected for one to have risen to that level they would have a great depth of experience in the field which we can see from the CV or personal profile submitted. At the interview stage, questions would be focused on the candidate telling us specifically how they achieved the feat.

In addition to telling us how they achieved such a feat, we want to hear what they will bring to the table to help us attain our aspirations.  At this level, soft skills which you might want to call attitude is critical.  We want to know if this candidate will come in to help the team blend more or scatter. Their collaborative skill is critical. Ability to lead and inspire people in the organisation is also key.

Anchor:
How does an organization’s HR needs influence strategic planning?

EM:
I would like to point out that HR needs do not influence strategic planning, instead, it's the other way round.

Strategic planning influences HR needs. Knowing where the organisation wants to be per time will determine the HR initiatives to deploy in order to get the best out of your people.

In view of the above, it is imperative for the HR professional to sit in the meeting where strategy discussion is taking place in order to contribute and evaluate the people implications of strategic decisions. This contribution will then shape the final strategic planning outcome.

Anchor:
In these current time where learning is moving at a fast pace, would you still consider the 70:20:10 model of learning as effective? What are your reasons?

EM:
I think that the best thing to do would first be to understand what this 70:20:10 model is all about. This understanding will then enable us determine whether it is still relevant or not.

70% of the time, you should be learning and developing through experience, i.e., learning by doing e.g. developmental tasks, challenges in current job role, stretch projects. Millennials want to be given something bigger than them to do in order to prove that they are the best.

20% of the time, you should be learning and developing through others, such as coaching, mentoring, feedback, role models etc.

10% of the time, you should be learning and developing through structured courses and programmes, i.e., education, such as structured training courses, reading, study, e-learning etc.

What does this understanding tell you? Reflect and answer the question.

Anchor:
What is your take on HR Leaders taking the lead in designing policies on Corporate Whistle-blowing? Would you consider this a good step in fighting corporate crimes?

EM:
Corporate Whistle-blowing is an integral part of any organisation's ethics policy. Without ethics, organisations would not be sustainable.

The purpose of whistle-blowing should not only be to catch a criminal but to also help improve lapses in the processes of the organisation.

Coming up with such a policy should be the joint task of HR, Audit, and the Risk team. I would suggest that the HR Leader hold a discussion with these other functional leaders in order to ensure that whatever is finally suggested and presented for management committee ratification is successful.

Anchor:
My company shuts down in December (sometimes 23rd or so) and reopens January.... We are entitled to 20days annual vacation. Now, will it be okay to say people should take only 15 days of leave in the course of the year and leave the remaining 5days to make up for the period of 2weeks that we shut down in December?

EM:
If the contract does not expressly state so, then, you cannot ask them to forfeit their leave days.

When I worked in the construction industry, we were entitled to two weeks leave. In our contract, it was expressly stated that the two weeks leave will be taken at the end of the year when the business shuts down. So we know that every year end is our leave period.

If not stated in contract and accepted by employee, NO, you can't.

Anchor:
What is the best tense to use in constructing a CV?

EM:
I am not a grammarian. So, let me put it in a way that is easy to understand.

Your CV should contain action words. Recruiters want to know what you did or achieved, not a reproduction of your job description (what your role is expected to do).

I hope this is clear enough.

Anchor:
We have been seeing #MAD all over social media. Can you tell us what #MAD is about? The driving initiative behind it? Possible collaborations with other group members? Would there be a book launch?

EM:
#MAD stands for Making A Difference.

YF and EM are involved in a project, which will be launched in 2019.

The project includes the launching of a book. Start saving to pre-order the book when we make the announcement. It's going to be a World Bestseller, and you can't afford to miss this stew being cooked by YF and EM.

I invite you to follow our social media handles, where we would be dishing out more info. If you have not yet, please do yourself a favour and follow us TODAY.




Anchor:
I believe that members of this group will get it at a discounted rate 😜

EM:
Yes, you are guaranteed of a special discount. Now that you mentioned it, we would have a special code for members here (members of HRGN).

Anchor:
Emmanuel Michael, SPHRi, its been an amazing time with you on tonight's episode of #thehotseat.  Keep the flag on and keep conquering great feats. We all appreciate you. Thank you and happy holidays.

EM:
Thank you Neekeh Adigun for a wonderful job moderating the session.

Thank you everyone for following me with rapt attention.

I wish you all a fabulous season as we celebrate. Enjoy but also play safe as I look forward to seeing you all in 2019.

Follow me on Twitter @enmichael

Cheers


= The End =


#Accelerate
#BeDeliberate
#MADIsTheNewCurrency
#HRwithEM… Your HR encyclopedia!
Follow me on Twitter @enmichael



About The Author
Emmanuel Michael is a 100 Most Influential Global HR Leader 2018, Author, Public Speaker, Mentor, Founder & Host of #HRwithEM. You can connect with him on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

4 comments:

  1. Thanks you Sir for sharing this. I'll learn more about the 70:20:10. Anticipating the launch of the book and hope to get my discount too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Great for your consistent and continued support. You will be made aware when the book is published. #HRwithEM

      Delete
  2. Great read Sir. Hope you can mentor me soon ☺

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Janet, I am glad to read that this piece resonates well with you. For mentoring enquiries, please send your request to enmichael@gmail.com. #HRwithEM

      Delete