Developing your skills as a human resources professional is important. We know that. The hard part is recognizing what skills to develop.
At this year’s Society for Human Resource Management Annual Conference (SHRM), I ran across some wonderful tools to help with developing HR competencies. These guides offer suggestions for specific activities that HR pros can do to develop their skills. SHRM has given me permission to share them with you directly (free PDF downloads).
Let me share three ways that I would use these documents:
- Don’t make assumptions about your level. We can cut our development efforts short by making assumptions about our career level. I know people who say, “I’ve been in HR ten years so I’m a senior level professional.” And that might be true. However, these guides were developed for a mass audience so there are activities in the early career document that apply to everyone. I would suggest looking at all of them.
- Share them with colleagues. If you’re mentoring or coaching an HR professional, these are great suggestions for professional development of HR competencies. You can bookmark this page and send it to colleagues when they ask about trying to get a promotion or transfer. It could be a great conversation starter.
- Share them with your boss. I’m not implying that you should tell your boss they need to get some skills. (As tempting as it may be at times.) But, if you’re trying to justify attending a conference or acquiring additional training, think about using these in your pitch.
Speaking of pitching professional development of your HR competencies, I also found two other documents that you might find helpful.
What I like about these two guides is that there’s space to jot down some ideas and keep track of your progress. The guides were customized for SHRM’s 2017 conference, so they have presentation suggestions in them. While the conference is long gone, you can access sessions via SHRM’s eLearning Library. Something to consider.
If we want to be recognized as a business partner, we have to stay current and relevant. That means making investments in our career. But it’s very easy to spend money and time on professional develop without seeing results. Staying focused on activities that align with HR competencies will help us succeed.
Image captured by Sharlyn Lauby after speaking at the 2017 SHRM Annual Conference in New Orleans, LA19