I love HR. I love the variety, the opportunity to coach peers and colleagues, to develop programs and solutions to support organizational challenges, the ability to have an impact on business outcomes. I read articles like this one; https://hbr.org/2015/04/reinventing-performance-management and think “Wow. It would be exciting to tackle a challenge in this way”. Yes, I often call myself an HR geek. I know, without a doubt, that HR is the profession for me.
How do I know that with such confidence? Well, as far as careers go, I consider myself very lucky. I have had the opportunity to try out 2 careers – HR and Marketing. I started working in HR after graduating from university and after a few years, had the opportunity to work in Marketing. After many years in Marketing, I began to realize that I missed HR. I found myself gravitating towards discussions on the impact and outcomes of a new bonus structure on the sales force. Or the best way to align the team to meet the needs of our customers. I missed meeting new employees, coaching managers, having a (very) passionate discussion about the value of performance management and feedback . So after 8+ years in Marketing, I focused on getting back into HR. I look forward to spending the rest of my working life in this field.
I would never trade those years in Marketing – not only did they provide me with a great knowledge of business operations which is incredibly helpful as an HR professional but it also provided me the opportunity to know, with confidence, that I am in the right field and this is where I belong.
I’ll be the first to admit, there are days when I wonder if I did make the right career choice. We all have those days right? When everyone wants to know if we are closing the office for the impending snowstorm. When the only reason people seek you out is to vent or complain. (Have you ever noticed that the volume of issues tends to grow with a full moon?) When I read yet another article on ” Why We Hate HR”. Those are the days where I think ” I should have stayed in Marketing”.
But then there are those days when I know I made a difference. Where I coach an employee or manager through a performance issue. Or I discuss launching an internal development program to meet the challenges of recruiting from the outside. Or I work with that manager who clearly understands that working with his team, challenging them, developing them, is as important as any other priority he has as a manager. Those are the days where I know that I am in the right field for me, that I made the right career choice. Those are the days I love HR.