It’s time for HR to step up and accept their biggest challenge yet!

School has started, business is slowly picking up and live seems to be evolving back to a ‘new’ normal….so time has come to start blogging again.

Over the last few weeks, working practices have changed overnight. The crisis forced almost every business to immediately develop, adapt or improve remote work policies and procedures. From the look of it, these remote working practices are here to stay.

Almost every business has implemented the necessary technology to support this new way of working but the most important challenge is yet to come: how do we adapt our people practices supporting this.

This offers a massive opportunity for HR leaders to step out of their comfort zone and accept the biggest challenge of their career.

With most businesses struggling to overcome the effects of the crisis, culture and leadership will be a major leverage.

But there is no clear roadmap on what corporate culture will be required to foster creativity and innovation with a dispersed workforce. Business leaders need to overnight change from a management style based on control and people presence to a style based on trust and focused on delivered results.

HR can play a major role to facilitate the required change in leadership practices, to determine the necessary adaptations to ensure an inclusive corporate culture and to develop people practices that ensure that employees are engaged, enthused and productive.

I can only agree with Saskia Van Nuffelen who, during a webinar on future proof HR, advised all HR leaders to get out of their office and align with the business. It is the ideal opportunity to show the added value HR can bring to deliver business success.

At the same time, I do realise that this will not be an easy task. Transactional HR activities, such as payroll, are still the basics… after all, every employee expects to be paid correctly and on time. Next to that, it will require a shift in attitude of HR: they will need to dare to challenge the business to change long-lasting practices, they will need to develop new skills to ensure that they are up to the task ahead and they will need to be creative in finding ways to increase the resilience of the organisation, its leaders and the entire workforce.

As a lot of you are HR or business leaders, I am curious to hear your thoughts and suggestions.

Reflecting back on this very strange period where private and professional life seemed to blend into one, where it was totally acceptable to interrupt a video interview to get the cupcakes my daughter made out of the oven and where the day would start with a cup of coffee in the sun …. I can only admit that I truly enjoyed these last few months, but I cannot wait to get back to business.

The fact that the recruitment business slowed down, gave me the opportunity to come up with some new business ideas that we will be launching in the coming months …. so, stay tuned because I am truly excited about it!

I look forward to hearing from you,


It’s time for HR to step up and accept their biggest challenge yet! was originally published in Secrets of a headhunter on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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