The title of this post is a quote from William James, an influential American philosopher and the very first educator to offer a Psychology course in the United States. I believe this quote has a profound implications for HR leaders.
Most of the times, I write about key issues, trends etc. in HR and Talent Management. But, through this post, I urge HR professionals to reflect upon and consider their purpose, their desired destination and the journey that gets you there.
purpose /ˈpəːpəs/ : The reason for which something is done or created or for which something exists.
In my mind, the key purpose of an HR professional would be to help build an ideal enterprise – an enterprise where:
People are able to get better at their craft and maximize their potential
People spend fulfilling time in pursuit of individual and collective goals
HR plays a key role in building this ideal enterprise. And this is accomplished through how we organise the enterprise, curate the organisational culture, design & deliver people programs – to enable organisational and individual success.
But, often we get caught up in the day-to-day grind of things. And sometimes this fire-fighting mode takes us away from the purpose. We end up taking reactive measures, taking a siloed view of people management and get caught in short-term thinking. We start looking at static snapshots and miss seeing inter-relationships & patterns of change.
Most importantly, we fall into the trap of thinking that we have time.
Every day we have the opportunity to move towards our end destination through our thoughts and actions. And cumulatively this will have an impact – good or bad.
In the future, as you will look back on the organisations you were trying to build and your contributions, what do you hope to find?
If you are passionate about making an impact, I will be keen to hear from you here or meet over a coffee.