Partner, not a Vendor…

The word “partner” has been bastardized by this industry. Seemingly, every company is your partner. If my blogs seem somewhat passionate and frustrated at times, it is because of a lack of movement and “realization” of this fact, especially in this HCM consulting industry where we are truly a business partner. See the definition below.
Note the words “action” (i.e. getting your project live on scope, on budget and on time) and “intimate relationship” (i.e. a shared goal of HCM making a difference as to how your business is run). People are your most important (and most expensive) asset. Can you afford anything less than a true partner?
HR is different. HR projects fail A LOT! Why is it that some companies get a “pass” (references are weighed differently), and CIO’s choose the more politically expedient choice. I am beginning to think that CIO’s are wimps. They want a seat at the “C Table”, but they aren’t willing to actually make the tough decisions and do the necessary due diligence to find a “real partner”. For those CIO’s reading this, you may want to read some words from Collin Powell on leadership:

Good leadership involves responsibility to the welfare of the group, which means that some people will get angry at your actions and decisions. It’s inevitable if you’re honourable. Trying to get everyone to like you is a sign of mediocrity: You’ll avoid the tough decisions, you’ll av oid confronting the people who need to be confronted, and you’ll avoid offering differential rewards based on differential performance because some people might get upset. Ironically, by procrastinating on the difficult choices, by trying not to get anyone mad, and by treating everyone equally “nicely” regardless of their contributions, you’ll simply ensure that the only people you’ll wind up angering are the most creative and productive people in the organization.
“Don’t be buffaloed by experts and elites. Experts often possess more data than judgment. Elites can become so inbred that they produce hemophiliacs who bleed to death as soon as they are nicked by the real world.” Small companies and start-ups don’t have the time for analytically detached experts. They don’t have the money to subsidize lofty elite, either. The president answers the phone and drives the truck when necessary; everyone on the payroll visibly produces and contributes to bottom-line results or they’re history. But as companies get bigger, they often forget who “brung them to the dance”: things like all-hands involvement, egalitarianism, informality, market intimacy, daring, risk, speed, agility. Policies that emanate from ivory towers often have an adverse impact on the people out in the field who are fighting the wars or bringing in the revenues. Real leaders are vigilant—and combative—in the face of these trends.
“Don’t be afraid to challenge the pros, even in their own backyard.” Learn from the pros, observe them, seek them out as mentors and partners. But remember that even the pros may have leveled out in terms of their learning and skills. Sometimes even the pros can become complacent and lazy. Leadership does not emerge from blind obedience to anyone. Xerox’s Barry Rand was right on target when he warned his people that if you have a yes-man working for you, one of you is redundant. Good leadership encourages everyone’s evolution.

Aspire is big enough to handle all of your needs, but yet small enough in our scope to ensure that we will be your HCM partner and are mutually invested in your success. We’ve implemented projects ranging from an 800 employee company all the way to the 19th largest company in the world. Both were completed on time, on scope, and on budget. Not to mention hundreds of companies in between. Times are changing, and you need to really look at your HCM IT decisions. Call me if you want to talk. Complete disagreement is acceptable. We can co-create something better together.

About joehillesheim

Founder and President of Aspire HR, Inc.
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