I have been on a parallel track to HR for the last year and a half or so, and there are a few things that I miss about my beloved profession. There are other things, as mentioned below, that I certainly appreciate about my current role. For those of you contemplating a step into a consulting or other position outside the “mainstream human resources” function, here are some things you might run across.
What I Miss
- Having insight into the business operations, funds, etc. The bird’s eye view of things. You never realize how much you appreciate it until it’s gone.
- Having a say in who receives recognition/rewards for their efforts. I miss being able to “go to bat” for someone that earned it.
- Knowing the value that everyone brings to the organization.
- Being able to talk with the CEO and other leaders as a trusted friend and swaying them when they are on the wrong path.
- The satisfaction of bringing on the perfect recruit, solving a manager coaching issue, or helping an employee with a career milestone.
What I Don’t Miss
- I no longer have to deal with employees that don’t deliver results and managers too awful to do anything about it.
- I don’t have to spend hours on the phone trying to investigate sexual harassment or other claims.
- I don’t have to put some of my favorite skills to the side and keep them unused for most of the time.
- I (sometimes) miss having an office with people around me.
- Probably some other stuff that my mind is glossing over right now like a faded memory–picking out the good parts and whitewashing the bad.
What I Love Now
This list isn’t complete without talking about what I love about my current role. It’s not too shabby!
- I get to write. Pretty much as often as I want. And I like to write quite a bit, so that’s saying something.
- I talk with technology companies all the time, but I’m not being sold–I’m asking the questions and digging into capabilities. That’s much more fun.
- I get to peek into some of the HR, learning, and talent practices at world-class organizations and share those insights with the world.
- I have the opportunity to impact many more companies, employees, and leaders than I did in my previous positions.
- I have the ability to work from home, which lets me work how and when I am most productive.
This is a great exercise! Think about your current role–what do you like best? What would you gladly give up?