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Get off the Bench

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My local churches have come through again. One of them has a sermon posted for this weekend titled Get off the Bench. It made me think for a moment about how that would apply to HR. When you think about it that is where HR is today. We are on that bench.

We as HR professionals seem to be complacent with staying in one position even if that leads us to be marginalized within our organizations. We get a request from management or an employee and unless it is in a narrow realm, our immediate response is that is not my job or something of that nature.

The global marketplace we are now facing will not allow you to stay on the bench any longer. It calls for you to look at new ways of doing our jobs or it will shove us out the door. So how do we get off the bench?

Put on a new hat – We are no longer able to sit off in a corner like a child in time out. Today’s work environment requires you to get out and see what your customers want and need. It requires you to understand that you are part of the total organization not just HR. Silos are beyond their lifespans

Expand your vision – With the wide array of educational opportunities available booth on line and at local educational institutions learn about new ways to do things. One of the most rewarding experiences for me was to go back to school and gain my training in Six Sigma. Learn this discipline. Learn about finance. Learn about positive psychology. I do not particularly care which direction you go in, just do it. It will make you more valuable to your organization.

Collaborate – Instead of sitting at your desk and vegetating get together with your co-workers from other departments and seriously discuss the organizational problems and greatness. Talk out the possible solutions to the problems including all the different stakeholders and their role in improvement. Get off the bench and get involved in active cross-functional teams.

Think out of the box – Orin the box, don’t care. But go into the organizational setting with an open mind as to where solutions can be found. Just because the organization has either never tried something or did and it failed, try again. Come up with suggestions which are not confined to a “this is just the way we do things around here mentality”. If we had done that we would not have post it notes(what would HR professionals do without those ever present sticky pieces of paper?)

So on this eve of the end of the Jewish New Year celebration, start off the New Year with a commitment to get off the bench that you have been sitting on. Get into the trenches and reexamine how we perform our responsibilities so that we have a more global perspective. How are you getting off the bench? Do you see other ways to get yourself up and moving in a new direction?



Daniel T. Bloom is the founder and Managing Partner of Daniel Bloom & Associates, Inc. Founded in 1980, DBAI is a Largo, Florida based human Capital consulting firm. Serving corporate clients nationwide, we have assisted organizations from small real estate firms to members of the Fortune 1000 with various human capital related issues.

DBAI services three niche markets with services to assist organizations to maximize the human capital assets of the organization.

The first niche is comprised of those organizations with fewer than 100 employees who either do not have or never had a human resources department and now find them selves in need of expert counsel on human capital issues. We in essence become their HR department but on a retained basis where they can call us as the need arises.

The second niche market are those corporations with a small HR staff who have an urgent need for specialized human capital services and we can provide the expertise to complete the application of these services on a timely and cost effective basis.

The third niche is strategic human capital project completion for the large corporations on a divisional basis.

The service package of DBAI includes, but is not limited to, the areas of talent management, training, vendor management, policy design, relocation management, process improvement and EEO.

A resident of Florida since 1980, Mr. Bloom was an executive recruiter with several contingency recruiting firms in the metropolitan New York market, a member of the internal HR staff of the ECI Division of E-Systems (Now Raytheon), a licensed real estate broker providing relocation services to corporate clients, an educator and since 1980 a Human Resource Consultant. He is a national member of the Society for Human Resource Management, Worldwide ERC (the corporate relocation trade association), and the American Society for Quality. In addition he is a member in the Tampa Bay area of American Society for Training and Development, Tampa Bay Metro Business Leadership Network and the Tampa Bay Executive Forum. In addition he serves on the Expert Panel for the Round Table Group in the area of human resource issues.

Mr. Bloom received a Bachelor’s of Arts degree from Parsons College majoring in Education and Certification in Six Sigma from St Petersburg College. He holds certification as a Senior Professional in Human Resources from the Human Resource Certification Institute, a Senior Certified Relocation Professional from Worldwide ERC and a Six Sigma Black Belt from St Petersburg College.

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Growth in women's share of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) occupations declined to 27% in 2011from a high of 34% in 1990. While women make up nearly half of the workforce, they were 26% of the STEM workforce in 2011.

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