A wise HR Professional makes a genuine connect with the employees and stays focused always

(a) Tips for a budding L&D/HR professional? – 

One major tip is to never lose sight on what you set out to be in the first place. No matter how far you are from the goal, stay at it and stay focused. Never get comfortable and treat every day as a new chance to add value. During my early days, I took up any and all HR responsibilities to help hone my HR skills and domain. This helped me gain immense experience internationally. 

Also, never stop learning. Continue to add meaningful accredited certifications to help keep up with the changing market.

(b) One HR/L&D practice that has always worked for you as an HR. (share an example)

One of the things that always worked for me is to know business but speak the language of my people. Build one to one connections, have meaningful conversations and follow up through on your discussions. Build a brand to be reliable first and then as an HR. 

I once worked with a female colleague at a very senior position through domestic abuse and helped her regain the confidence she had lost through the years. On the outside, she was still a top performer but as years had progressed, she had challenges at home. To take her mind off the stress, she focused on work but emotionally she was very weak. It took us 6 months of weekly informal discussions to encourage her to take the first step towards breaking the cycle of abuse and be free. Today, she is a thriving individual, not only at work but owns her own business. These small changes make it worth pursue my career.  “Succeed in the workplace before you succeed in the marketplace” 

(c) How can an HR/L&D contribute strategically to the organization?

HR is the pivot that balances talent and business. With the capabilities to bring the people side of business, HR should aim to use data and metrics to propose solutions or have discussions rather than subjective assumptions. Learning forms the core of any business, so, use technology to leverage intellectual independence. 

(d) Do you think robots can replace HR/L&D professionals in the coming decade?

If science can inculcate an Emotional Quotient in a Robot, sure.

(e) What is the role of Experiential Learning in today’s L&D world?

We are now moving away from classroom based, one day restricted training. An evolved version of on the job training, experiential learning gives employees the psychological safety to fail first and fast. It allows people to learn through mistakes and not be penalized for it. This requires a culture that harnesses on employee experiences plus trial and error method rather than dwelling on hierarchal decisions. On one hand, Corporations are focusing on real time learning that will have an immediate ROI, while on parallel, empowering employees to take control of their own careers. Switching career lanes is now an achievable goal norm rather than a prolonged marathon race. 

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