What makes it possible for any organization to grow, be able to resolve conflicts, and adapt to changes, are the employees. And one of the most critical parts in the selection and retention of talent is the leader of the human resources department.
The HR department has undergone more changes in the last two years against the past decade. The fast-changing environment doesn’t allow planning in advance and demands faster and more efficient reactions. Therefore, the leaders of HR must be agile, flexible, and quickly adapt to challenges.
What skills will HR leaders need?
#1 Change management
A Gartner’s report on the main HR priorities for 2023 showed that 53% of those responsible for this department see change management as a focus.
The same report shows that 45% of employees feel tired of many changes. This is because organizations are now learning the consequences of working during this metamorphosis.
Therefore, it’s necessary to have leaders who adopt strategies that reduce exhaustion, support employees during periods of uncertainty, and involve them in the processes rather than simply telling them what will happen.
#2 organizational design
The organizational design process results in a more effective structure of the company, improving results, empowering employees, and committing them to the company.
With this skill, an HR leader can identify faulty or dysfunctional functioning in systems, structures, and procedures, realign them with the company’s objectives, and above all, with current reality.
#3 Active listening
There are many ways to gain employees’ or collaborators’ commitment, but one of the most effective ways is active listening. A leader’s listening makes the difference when establishing effective communication, another of the skills that we will see later.
Active listening requires attention, patience, and empathy to understand what is being communicated to us, even if it is non-verbal. It’s a bridge that brings the employee and the manager closer together, making the former feel more valued, and the latter will know what those people on whom the company’s success relies think.
Within an organization, agility is adapting to the most unpredictable or accelerated changes or processes. An HR leader must know how to accurately identify the needs of employees, reduce their response time, and calibrate strategies to achieve success.
Companies’ challenge in the face of these changes is the obsolescence of specific processes, programs, and even jobs. A leader must know how to adapt to technological, social, and labor changes and, on certain occasions, unlearn some customs that interfere with progress.
#7 Vision and innovation
We talk about vision and innovation together because they are skills that have become very important after the disruption caused by the pandemic. Furthermore, it’s necessary to have vision, to innovate
Currently, the most innovative companies manage to stay, stand out and retain the best internal talent. But, to achieve a culture of innovation, HR leaders play a fundamental role. Above all, these leaders are the ones who develop and execute the strategy while acting as an example.
Companies are changing the traditional model to one focused on collaboration, which offers autonomy to people and helps speed up decision-making. Companies are leaving behind hierarchical organization systems to adjust to a networking model or teams who can adapt better to this fast-changing environment.
People management implies helping the employee to develop and improve. A leader needs to provide his team with a climate of trust and collaboration; he needs to value his human capital and give importance to each member’s contributions. Mentoring or coaching are capacities leaders can apply to foster collaboration in their teams.
Any HR leader must be an effective communicator. Good communication means that you have to develop the ability to transmit the values and objectives of the company to your collaborators but also reach agreements that benefit the organization and its employees. In addition, leaders must be able to inspire and transmit positive ideas to the workers to prepare them for changes in the future.
#10 Preparation for the work of the future
Finally, according to Gartner, preparing for the future is a priority for 42% of HR leaders. Since the strategies that we have been using for decades are ineffective in the current context.
Instead of trying to predict future needs, a leader must anticipate changes, providing talent with training in soft and digital skills that enable new approaches and methods.
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