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Jan 10, 2014

Human Resources is a giving profession.

It is a profession where you will not receive tons of kudos, be recognized for closing million dollar deals, or for engineering the next great product that revolutionizes the world.

What you will receive is a call from an irate employee when their bonus check is smaller than they would like, an email when there is confusion about health benefits, or a mad dash request to refill a vacant position because someone just left the company.

In fact, it seems like Human Resources is all guts and no glory.

Don’t forget those under you in HR

We never collect the huge commission check or close the multi-million dollar integration deal, but what we do is maintain and manage the critical resources for all company employees and their families in order for them to be successful in their jobs and meet the goals of the company.

In recent years, Human Resources has received more attention from CEO’s and some organizations have gone down the path to create CHRO (chief HR officer) roles where HR has a “seat at the table.” Those leaders who understand the value behind a strategic Human Resources group are at the forefront of a shift where every aspect of human capital is being scrutinized more than ever before.

Organizations are now focused on investing in people strategies such as performance management, talent acquisition, executive compensation, onboarding, and talent management, to name a few.

However, while all these people strategies are extremely important and critical to a company’s talent development and people management strategy – Human Resources leaders, I remind you to take care of your own people first and don’t forget about the ones under you in HR.

Yes, I mean the ones focusing on recruiting, compensation, performance management, etc. It’s easy to do for everyone else and to “keep the internal clients happy” and to forget about those who are actually doing things for others.

Yes, HR can be overlooked too

A prime example of this was a conversation I had this past week with a Senior HR leader in one of America’s largest retailers. She mentioned how busy her department was in ensuring that performance evaluations were executed throughout the company.

But in the same sentence, mentioned that she hadn’t received a performance evaluation from her boss in over a year. She was extremely disappointed in how things had transpired around her own progression and evaluation — and now she is contemplating seeking a new opportunity.

Plain and simple; this Senior HR leader, like many others, has been forgotten about.

So here’s a note to all Senior HR leaders out there: your direct reports are important and mission critical, and they should be treated like all other employees in the company.

As HR continues to support business needs and requirements, it’s easy to give and give but remember to stop and take care of your own people and department through the same steps you advise the business about: talent management/planning, performance management, compensation, compensation allocation, etc.

After all, if you have superstars under you, the last thing you want is for them to feel unappreciated and starting to look elsewhere.