Change. Change. Change. Repeat. It’s the new normal for every organization, and it’s not going to end anytime soon. As HR leaders, how can we build teams that are resilient in the face of that constant change?
Mark Stelzner, founder and managing principal at HR consulting firm Inflexion Advisors, says the biggest mistake HR leaders can make is stopping and waiting for more change to come. Instead, he says, HR should lead the charge, updating the way our organizations work to survive and thrive in our new reality.
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What the Liquid Workforce Means for HR
We started our conversation by discussing the biggest changes in HR right now. One of the most prominent changes Stelzner sees is in how we view the workforce. “We’re talking less about employees and more about workers,” he says. “Now there’s this notion of a liquid workforce that is composed of individuals who occupy roles.” Many organizations, he says, are embracing the idea of a liquid workforce and using this concept to structure and staff teams.
Additionally, the rise of a more global workforce, coupled with its intrinsically liquid nature, means organizations will have to lean on service providers more for a significant portion of the talent life cycle. Stelzner offers a hypothetical example. “If your organization decides to enter Budapest tomorrow, do you know anything about Budapest regulations?” he asks. “You’ve got to find somebody who can hyperlocalize, can allow you to be compliant, but also allow you to thrive wherever and whenever you want to be.”
Change is one of the primary constants in the workplace right now, but Stelzner says organizations need to stop waiting for change to come to them. “You shouldn’t wait,” he says. “There are incremental changes that we can take on at any moment in time. If you do wait, it’s too late.”
These changes don’t have to be big, he says, because small things can make a big difference. “Stop trying to boil the ocean,” he says. One small change he suggests is auditing your relationships with your team and your vendors. Ask yourself where your pain points are, and see what you can do to make things better. “These are incremental changes that will fundamentally change your cost basis and also make the life of you and your employees just a little bit easier.”