For the past 7 years, I worked as an HR business partner, both internally and externally, though have never worked directly in an HR department. Within my previous organization, JobsInNH, I worked closely with HR to develop and deliver training programs, employee surveys, and employee incentive programs in addition to recruiting, interviewing, and hiring. During that time, I worked externally with organizations to help them build employment branding and recruitment marketing strategies as w... (and therefore engagement) within their personnel.

I have also been fortunate enough to be a member of SHRM, and have been a regular member at various times at the local HR associations in Portland, ME, Manchester and Concord, NH, Worcester, MA, and now am with the Greater Monadnock SHRM chapter. In addition to my participation in the SHRM meetings, I also regularly attended trade association and chamber of commerce meetings.

Over the years, it has become blindingly clear that there is often a major disconnect between the HR and non-HR management within organizations. At it's best, an HR office can help organizations increase productivity, decrease turnover, increase skills and knowledge, prevent law suits, and provide a safe, healthy, and inclusive workplace. It is my distinct belief that HR has the ability to affect more areas of a business than any other single department. So why the disconnect?

I guess to answer that I would need to amend that last statement. It is my distinct belief that HR has the ability to affect more areas of a business than any other single department, provided there is support from the top and buy in from the other departments. This is where breakdowns often begin. I wonder how many of us attended an HR conference last year, and came back to our offices energized and motivated, bringing a new idea with us that we believed would positively impact our company. And how many of us were able to successfully implement those new ideas? I hope it was more than a few, but I am certain that it was not the majority.

This year, which will likely be my last on the Board for the Granite State HR Conference, I am urging Human Resource professionals to do whatever it takes to bring along a business partner to your annual HR conference, no matter where you are. I've included a couple of the program write-ups below as examples, and as you'll see, there is truly valuable content available for anyone who runs a business or manages people. Fundamentally, EVERY manager in an organization works with human resources every day and can benefit from the skills and knowledge shared at these annual events.

Peter Hughes Strategic Planning for Operational Transformation
This dynamic and highly interactive session will bring focus and insight into the fundamental planning strategies and behaviors operational and HR professionals can use to create a new dimension of success within their organizations. You will leave with a deeper understanding of the Positive Change Transformational Planning Model and how this planning model can create a sustainable level of operational success within your operating departments. This session is designed for operational and HR managers who want to make a strategic difference by transforming their functions and departments into higher performing organizations. Call it strategic planning or transformational leadership, this workshop is about creating a state of operational excellence through strategies and behaviors that any leader can use and any HR partner can help drive through the organization.

Annabel Beerel

New Realities: Responding to the Critical Signals of Change
New realities arrive at the doorstep everyday. Some are very challenging, while others are quite manageable. Whatever the circumstance, organizations must adapt to the change. The ability to identify and respond to change is a hallmark of effective leadership. Reality never disappears, even when people ignore it or create a pseudo environment they find more palatable. Now more than ever, managers and HR professionals need to hone the skills necessary to identify and adapt to new realities in the workplace. Participants in this session will learn about the importance of reading new realities, the reasons why people defer reality or create ones of their own making, and the skills needed to mobilize others to respond to the changing circumstances of our time.

Margaret Morford
Workplace Trends: Survival Secrets for the Next Decade
The workforce of the future looks dramatically different than today. Employee demographics, attitudes, and needs are evolving as fast as technological innovation can support. For managers and HR professionals, this requires a radical shift in the way you conduct business and manage talent. You need to prepare now for the seismic shifts coming soon, so you are not caught unaware and so your organization remains viable into the future. Management expert Margaret Morford will discuss the dramatic changes in store for the HR profession, some of which are happening right now and some of which are still in their infancy. The practical advice offered in this presentation will teach you what to do today to prepare for the workplace of tomorrow.
You can see the full schedule of workshops by clicking here.

This year, bring a business partner to your annual HR conference, and bring back an ally. You'll be glad you did.

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