New HRBPs Should Try This

The first of seven HRBP success factors

Two business partners talking
The author owns the image publishing rights

The 2022 HRBP Report summarizes the findings from a qualitative study. The study includes seven HRBP success factors, and I shared the second one in the blog, One HRBP Success Factor that Is Underappreciated and Misunderstood. In this blog, I’m sharing the first success factor, Seek Support.

Image of the 7 success factors: seek support, learn the business, communicate and empathize, focus on results, add value and build trust, improve through feedback, and work differently
Image created by the author

Why Seek Support is crucial

Compared to other HR roles, the HRBP role is new and requires a skillset that is substantially different from other HR roles, such as in talent acquisition, employee relations, benefits, and talent development. HRBPs need to be strategic and coach BPs to manage their business strategy.

Learning the HRBP role shouldn’t be left to chance or trial-and-error learning. You need help, which is why seeking support is crucial. Formal training courses and books about the HRBP role may be necessary but insufficient. You need support.

Why HRBPs might resist support

In Triggers, Marshall Goldsmith writes about three competing impulses that may cause people to resist having structures to help with their development. The third one is why some avoid support:

  1. Contempt for simplicity (only complexity is worthy of our attention)
  2. Contempt for instruction and follow-up
  3. Faith, however unfounded, that we can succeed all by ourselves”

When we assume that we are better than people who need structure and guidance, we lack one of the most crucial ingredients for change: humility. (17–18)

Seek support: mentors

In the study, some interviewees attributed part of their success to HR mentors. A mentor helps you navigate situations and operate proactively.

A few interviewees stressed that you should have mentors from the business. If you are assigned to the head of the IT department as your BP, you’ll want to learn as much as possible…

Gary A. DePaul, PhD (he/him/his)

Gary is a speaker, author, researcher, and leadership futurist.