Monday, December 27, 2010

New Role, new challenges

Man, being new to a organizations is a pain! I was once told that no company is perfect and I accepted that on face value without really thinking about it. In reality, there are two types of companies. Companies that are can change course easily and companies that can't. I think one of the worst things about HR is that the first 6 months is spent learning all of the transactional procedures that get stuff done. Really, to me, this is a necessary but painful evil in an HR career. You need to be the expert on how an organization moves forward on a daily basis, but your job is not to provide transactional support for the operational guys. I just feel like I am wasting time learning this stuff however necessary to get to the good stuff like changing attitudes and processes toward talent and development. If Kris Dunn has taught me anything, it is that every minute you spend on transactional work is a waste of time. But, yet you must learn, so that you can teach others.

Part of my problem with the new organization (which is great, really), is that they are growing so fast they seem to be going overboard to create some semblance of organization as they rapidly expand. The result is a heavy handed attempt at an extremely hierarchical structure from a former marine (Oh, how I want to say ex-marine just to piss you guys off...Marines and military folk will get this).

As an HR guy who knows where his paycheck comes from, my number one goal has always been to increase my operational boss's authority. I firmly believe that the more decision making you push down to the lowest level the more flexible and effective you will be as an organization. However, I now find myself in a position where the organization is going the opposite way.
So, I now find myself in the role of insurgent. I need to convince people who get paid more and have worked for the organization longer than me that their path is wrong, and while structure is important, it is not what has made them successful in the past.

So, the question I have been pondering this week before the new year, in a two month old job is how ballsy should I be, and who can I afford to piss off to make my point.