Working in HR is a tight spot. Yes, it’s incredibly rewarding, and for many people in the profession, it’s a passion for people and getting stuff done that not many other career paths can match. However, you need to make sure you’re either made for the role, or you train for it, and you have the essential qualities you need to succeed.
But what are these qualities? What kind of attributes and traits do you need to perform and succeed in an HR role well, whether you’re helping your business succeed, or simply getting things done?
There’s absolutely no denying that communication is by far the most important trait you need to work in HR. Whether you’re communicating with your team, with employees, with external people, or messaging and reporting to the entire business, you need to have a knack for being able to take a message and communicate it in the best possible way.
It doesn’t matter who you’re talking to, from a job applicant to a disgruntled employee, you need to know how to communicate well in every situation that can, and probably will, arise.
Dealing with Conflicts
There are going to be times when HR gets stressful, especially when you’re dealing with a tense situation between employees or someone is upset or angry about something. Some people just want to vent and don’t want to listen, so you need to be able to take control of the situation and strive to have the best outcome possible.
Being Able to Multitask
While pretty much every single productive guide on the internet will tell you that multitasking is one of the worst and most unproductive things most people can do because you’re not able to solely focus on one task, these writers have clearly never worked in HR.
Multitasking is part of the job, and if you can’t do it, you’re probably going to need to work elsewhere. Issues, problems, and requests for tasks come up all the time, and it’s important you can keep you head straight enough to focus on them all.
Surprised to see this one? There are going to be times when things get tough, whether you have angry employees on your doorstep or managers breathing down your neck. You know but job definition what to do and what the best approach is, and you’ll need the courage to stand up and make that happen.
As someone in HR, you’re expected to set a good example for everyone else when it comes to following the law and making sure you’re looking out for both the business and employees. This means keeping personal information confidential and complying with workplace laws.
While a little rarer, you may need to present to the people in your business at some time or another, so it can always be handy to have presentation skills. This may come in the form of new rules and regulations, or training staff, so brush up on this!
As we’ve mentioned already, there are a lot of things an HR employee has to do within a business, and the chances are you’re handling multiple things at once, so you have to make sure you’re organized with everything. This is a no-brainer!
Since you’re in HR, people are going to want different things. Whether that’s dealing with pay rise issues, sick day, leu day allowance, holiday forms, and the such, you’re going need to be able to negotiate with people so everybody, both the people you’re talking to and your business, is satisfied.
Able to Lead
“While leadership qualities may not be the most common skill in an HR employee’s toolkit, that doesn’t make it less essential. You are a leader the people when it comes to training, law, pay grades, and more, so take up this role with confidence and make it happen!” shares Mark Harris, from an HR manager at Academic brits.
Of course, there’s the age-old nugget of truth that you need the experience to perform in your role, and you can’t get experience because you don’t have the experience, and so the cycle continues. However, through education or an HR course or just by being in an HR role and learning on the job, you can help build the experience you need to make it the big full world of HR.