Shaping Your HR Role

Succeeding in Today's Organizations


  • William Kahnweiler, Associate Professor and Director of Human Resource Degree Programs, Georgia State University
  • Jennifer Kahnweiler, Jennifer B. Kahnweiler, Ph.D. is founder and owner of AboutYOU, Inc., a firm specializing in career consulting for professionals and organizations.

This book has been written for the HR Practitioner and will provide readers with tools, guidelines, ideas, and strategies for developing their role within the Human Resources function. This text focuses on current issues and future trends in both the HR profession and the workplace. Organizations will continue to be forced to function in a lean and mean manner, HR professionals are now required to manage outsourcing functions and to move through multiple internal roles quickly. This book will act as a roadmap to help them plan and implement these roles quickly and efficiently, aligned to their organizations strategy.
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Book information

  • Published: April 2005
  • ISBN: 978-0-7506-7823-0


"Combining HR science and soul, this soup-to-nuts book brilliantly tells how HR works, how HR pros make it work, and how you can make HR your career that works." -- Chip R. Bell, author, Managers as Mentors "With over sixty years of combined HR experience, the Kahnweilers’ continued passion for HR comes through in this book. Their passion, however, does not preclude them from giving an honest portrayal of HR – the good and not-so-good. Their insights are right on, presenting the reader with a real foundation for success in HR. This book characterizes HR in real-world practical terms rather than in abstract superlatives, and illustrates the challenges HR professionals confront on a daily basis. This book is worthwhile for anyone in HR but particularly so for those somewhat new to HR and those considering an HR career. I wish I had read this book twenty years ago." -- Steve Hewitt, Senior Professional in Human Resources, The Hewitt Group

Table of Contents

DedicationPreface and AcknowledgmentsIntroductionChapter 1 Laying the Groundwork for Success Help Wanted: Competent and Confident HR Professionals The Opportunities The Challenges Making Development a Priority Bring Who You Are To What You Do ReferencesChapter 2 What Does an HR Career Look Like Today?: Opportunities, Appeals, and Challenges The Opportunities: A Multitude of Options in Crafting an HR Career The Many and Varied Appeals of an HR Career The Challenges of an HR Career Concluding Remarks ReferencesChapter 3 The Many Hats HR Professionals Wear Role Framework A Few Caveats Role Descriptions Primary Skills Required of Each Role Choosing One’s Role—Some Guidelines Consulting Careers Concluding Remarks ReferencesChapter 4 The HR Career Success Model Why a Model? Underlying Assumptions of The HR Career Success Model The Model Additional Considerations Concluding Remarks ReferencesChapter 5 Actions to Take: Learning About Yourself Experience—The Great Teacher What Skills Do You Bring to the Table? Traits—What is the Way You Approach the World? Values—What Would You Fight For? Likes and Dislikes—Knowing What Excites (and Deflates) You Emotional Intelligence—How Do We Manage Ourselves and Our Relationships? More Strategies for Gaining Self Knowledge Concluding Remarks ReferencesChapter 6 Actions to Take: Learning About the Field Learning About the Functional Areas of HR Learning About Issues and Trends in HR Structured Learning Experiences Unstructured Learning Experiences Additional Guides, Steps, and Tips for Gaining Field Knowledge Concluding Remarks ReferencesChapter 7 Actions to Take: Learning About the Organization Our Assumptions About Organizations The Success Model Factors Guides to Learning About the Organization Concluding Remarks ReferencesChapter 8 Achieving Results: Pathways to Success Illustrative Case Studies Win-Win Passion Marketing by the Customer Demonstrating Impact Values Conflicts ReferencesChapter 9 Your Future in Human Resources: Career Development Planning for the Savvy (and Sometimes Stubborn) The Case for Development Where Does Motivation Come From? Planning for Your Development: Getting Started Key Trends Affecting Your Plans Proven Development Steps The Next Dwelling House ReferencesAppendicesAppendix A—Exercises and Activities to Gain Self-KnowledgeAppendix B—HR and HR-related Professional AssociationsAppendix C—Interview GuideAppendix D—Example of HR Career PathsIndex