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I don’t know about you, but when I buy some sort of technology device, I always wonder how long until the next best thing comes along and makes my current purchase obsolete.  If you wonder the same thing, you’re not alone.  It seems that technology is rapidly changing and if we don’t have the newest, most recent tech toy, we will surely be left behind.  The new iPad 3 has launched and most people are excited to see what Apple has in store for us…retina display, microphone, better screen resolution and who knows what else.  I won’t be first in line for pre-orders, as I’m perfectly happy with my one-month old, iPad 2.  However, knowing Apple is once again flying high above its competitors by continuously offering innovative tools to help humans do what they do, when they do it, and how they do it….well, it got me thinking about the evolution of HR.  Do we think of ourselves as yesterday’s computer model or today’s brightest and most innovative?

As HR professionals, it can be difficult to feel like we are innovating or creating something new, all while being strategic.  Oh yes, and let’s not forget all of the tactical items we have sitting on our desks right now.  It can be overwhelming to think that we have so much to do in so little time.  Unless maybe you work at Disney and there is magic that takes care of that for you.  But in case you don’t have magic or little mice to do your work, how do we strive to be innovative, creative and strategic?  I don’t think we want to be viewed as yesterday’s computer model.

HR can play a role in innovation.  With tools already in place, like performance management and compensation systems, we can leverage these to foster innovation at our company.  In the Human Resource Executive Online edition, Susan R. Meisinger provides a few things to keep in mind while we try to innovate in the workplace:

  • Are you focusing on what changes might be necessary to your performance-management system to help shift the culture from one of risk-avoidance during a recession to one that encourages risk taking?
  • Are you using assessment tools to help identify candidates that will be more innovative for roles that demand innovation?
  • Will you ensure compensation systems reward employees who, despite being exhausted from weathering the economic storm, are fully engaged in driving innovation within the organization?
  • And will you know you’re successful because you’re allowing yourself to be held accountable for fostering a culture of innovation? (Meisinger )

Take an inventory of what’s available to you.  Can you work with the tools already in place?  Can they be adapted or adjusted?  What works for your company may not work for others.  What has worked for you?  Do you have an innovative idea to share?  If so, I’d be interested in hearing about it. Email me (corporatehrgirl@gmail.com) , with subject line as “HR Innovation”) and I’ll include a few responses in the next newsletter!

As we look forward to standing in line and ordering the latest and greatest, keep in mind that we can be the latest and greatest too!

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