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Fabiola Eyholzer on Changing Thinking in HR

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In this Shane Hastie, Lead Editor for Culture & Methods, spoke to Fabiola Eyholze at the Agile People conference in Stockholm, Sweden, about the need to radically change HR thinking and practices in organisations to enable creativity and productivity.

Key Takeaways

  • The need to create great places of work where people enjoy going to work
  • It’s about having meaningful work; understanding why we do things and our contribution is to make a positive impact on other peoples’ lives
  • We want people to think outside the box and be creative at work and that means we need to create workplaces that support them to do so
  • We thrive when we bring diversity into teams – different personalities and approaches result in better outcomes
  • Most HR people do genuinely care about other people, about engagement and about creating healthy workspaces; yet HR is often so process-driven that they forget about the important people factors

Show Notes

  • 00:28 Introductions
  • 00:56 Defining what Agile HR is and why it’s different
  • 01:23 It’s about putting people first, rather than the processes and tools of traditional HR 
  • 01:37 It feels like heaven – creating a space where people are happier and healthier 
  • 02:03 We want people to think outside the box and be creative at work and that means we need to create workplaces that support them to do so
  • 02:15 It’s about having meaningful work; understand why we do things and what our contribution to making a positive impact on other peoples’ lives
  • 02:47 HR needs to create an environment where people thrive through collaboration and challenging work
  • 03:18 Everyone has talents – find the best way for those talents to thrive
  • 03:38 Teamwork and collaboration are necessary for success
  • 03:54 We thrive when we bring diversity into teams – different personalities and approaches result in better outcomes 
  • 04:31 Advice on how to avoid hiring “me too” people – deliberately looking for diverse viewpoints and skills: ask the team what skills and perspectives are missing and hire for those
  • 05:04 Agile is a team sport, and the team should do the hiring
  • 05:18 When the team makes the hiring decision, they will work to integrate the new people into their team
  • 05:48 Teams need to use retrospectives to ask themselves if they have the right mix of skills, knowledge and personalities to make things happen, identify the gaps and then deliberately find people to fill the gaps
  • 06:57 Advice on leveraging diversity for healthy conflict which enables growth and learning
  • 07:01 If we all agree with each other all the time we will never be in a position to challenge our own thinking 
  • 07:49 The space for healthy discussions is highly collaborative, highly communicative and people are not afraid to speak their minds 
  • 08:38 Advice for HR people to help create the different type of workplace that is needed today
  • 08:46 Most HR people do genuinely care about other people, about engagement and about creating healthy workspaces
  • 09:00 HR is often so process-driven that they forget about the important people factors
  • 09:18 What used to be seen as the “soft skills” are now the success factors in business today 
  • 09:24 It’s people that make or break a company
  • 09:42 In the industrial age it was about strengthening companies that led to success, in the digital age it’s about empowering people
  • 10:03 These are truly transformational changes that are really hard – the whole DNA of the organisation needs to change

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