As a child, September is a time for a fresh start as you enter a new grade with a new teacher, possibly make new friends or maybe even start at a new school. It is ingrained in us to see September as the “beginning of the year” from the time we are four years old, but along the way, we get caught up in New Year’s resolutions and fiscal year ends and all the fun they can bring.
As the summer winds down, I’ve been thinking a lot about how September is really the perfect time for HR to get back in touch with what’s important for their organization and that we should all consider treating September as time for a fresh start. If your organization runs on the calendar year – you have four months to check back on how your “plan” for the year is coming along. From a retention and talent management strategy standpoint it’s a good time to look at where the organization is with yearly appraisals, or succession plans as a whole group of workers gets one step closer to retiring. If you’ve not been doing these things, it isn’t too late to start now! You just have to tackle it one step at a time.
Speaking of schools, what about the classroom? What training do you need as an HR professional to continue to grow and achieve? If you haven’t already, maybe you need to sit down and set some professional development goals for yourself. Also, this would also be a great time to check with managers and employees to see what their development needs are through the end of the year and get everything on the calendar.
And finally, the next four months is apt to whiz by just like the rest of the year, so why not start thinking now about your organization’s requirements and needs for 2009? Do you have a recruiting, retention or another HR program that needs work or extra time to get to the next level? Now is the time to lay the groundwork for new programs and secure buy-in from your team and executives.
Let’s all take a few minutes and set at least one back to school goal for our organization this “school” year and work towards getting a good grade.
Submitted by Sean Conrad for the August 2008 Talent Buzz blog contest. Sean is a senior product analyst at Halogen Software. He is a frequent blogger, author and speaker on talent management trends, issues and technology. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.