HRM Practitioners Challenged to Promote Positive Industrial Relations


Postmaster General Dr. Blossom O’Meally Nelson, is challenging human resource managers to promote positive industrial relations in the workplace.
Noting that the promotion of positive industrial relations was an important tool for effective management, Dr. O’Meally Nelson said the human resources function must create the opportunity for dialogue on a group basis, as well as on an individual basis, within the organization. She also insisted that issues be discussed in a frank manner.
She was speaking at a recently held Human Resource Management (HRM) conference hosted by the Management Institute for National Development (MIND), the Public Sector Reform Unit in the Cabinet Office, and the Office of the Services Commission at MIND’s Old Hope Road offices in Kingston. The conference theme was ‘Strategic HRM: Creating a Results-driven organization.”
The Post Master General, in a well-received presentation, lamented that too often, the HRM practitioner was only called in, when there was a crisis. “The concept of HRM as an emergency room that deals only with critical cases is very common,” she noted while adding, “the approach, which regards HRM as a potion is outdated and ineffective.”
Dr. O’Meally Nelson charged the capacity-filled room of HRM practitioners, to be aggressive in their promotion of new management thinking.
“You are the ones who must be reading and thinking and have the foresight. You must be the energy that drives the organization. When managers meet, give them the latest thing from Harvard Business Review,” she challenged the group.
She also added that they must be the ones to arrange seminars and fora that highlight modern management practices.
Warning that managers are unlikely to diagnose themselves, Dr. O’Meally Nelson said, HRM practitioners must provide the conceptual link between management planning and worker productivity.
Turning to the human resource managers’ role in balancing employees, resources and results, she quoted world-renowned author Stephen Covey; “you can buy people’s hands but you cannot buy their hearts.
Their hearts are where their enthusiasm, their loyalty is. You can buy their backs, but you cannot buy their brains – that’s where their creativity is, their ingenuity and their resourcefulness.” Dr. O’Meally Nelson also pointed to number of key areas in which the contribution of HRM was critical, if workers are to buy into’ the organization’s goals, and create the desired results.
These areas include, identifying the external and internal customers’ needs, finding a better way to achieve goals, monitoring employee participation and motivation, and designing relevant training programmes.
Speaking of her disapproval of some training programmes, Dr. O’Meally Nelson argued that too many training programmes were standardized, repetitive and out of step with the organization’s direction and goals. Too many of the training programmes reflected what the trainer liked or was comfortable with, she said.
The Postmaster General stressed that training was the most important means of aligning people with organizational goals, in order to produce the desired results.
The HRM Conference was also addressed by a number of senior executives, who dealt with issues such as communication strategies, leadership and developing high impact professionals.

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