Friday, September 18, 2009

The Wind Beneath the Organization's Wings

There's an interesting discussion going on over at my new friend Laurie Ruettimann's Punk Rock HR blog regarding the death (or not!) of HR.

It's interesting that for some reason people evaluate HR based on the performance and job duties of the clerks in the profession. It's as if people think the role of HR is keeping track of vacation and holiday time or posting rules in the lunchroom. Most people have no idea of the actual role of HR as leader and advisor to the CEO and executive team on all things people related. No one thinks that the role of the IT leaders is data entry or that the role of the Finance team is paying bills. Yet everyone defines HR in those simplistic terms.

I think the reason for this disconnect is that HR works as an advisor behind the scenes to make every other department look good and function optimally. Much of what HR does is in the shadows and HR professionals are content to let other people shine based on HR's advice and counsel.

The most accurate description is already written out in Bette Midler's song, Wind Beneath My Wings. Read the following lyrics and consider them being sung to you (HR) by every executive in your organization.

It must have been cold there in my shadow,
to never have sunlight on your face.
You were content to let me shine, that's your way.
You always walked a step behind.

So I was the one with all the glory,
while you were the one with all the strain.
A beautiful face without a name for so long.
A beautiful smile to hide the pain.

Did you ever know that you're my hero,
and everything I would like to be?
I can fly higher than an eagle,
for you are the wind beneath my wings.

It might have appeared to go unnoticed,
but I've got it all here in my heart.
I want you to know I know the truth, of course I know it.
I would be nothing without you.

Did you ever know that you're my hero?
You're everything I wish I could be.
I could fly higher than an eagle,
for you are the wind beneath my wings.

Did I ever tell you you're my hero?
You're everything, everything I wish I could be.
Oh, and I, I could fly higher than an eagle,
for you are the wind beneath my wings,
'cause you are the wind beneath my wings.

Oh, the wind beneath my wings.
You, you, you, you are the wind beneath my wings.
Fly, fly, fly away. You let me fly so high.
Oh, you, you, you, the wind beneath my wings.
Oh, you, you, you, the wind beneath my wings.

Fly, fly, fly high against the sky,
so high I almost touch the sky.
Thank you, thank you,
thank God for you, the wind beneath my wings.

6 Comments:

Blogger Laurie said...

That song is not very punk rock angry riot girl, but Bette Midler is an awesome diva.

3:48 PM, September 18, 2009  
Blogger Beth N. Carvin said...

Ha! I never really liked that song but if you review the lyrics they are so apt for Human Resources role within organizations.

4:20 PM, September 18, 2009  
Blogger Michael said...

Nice post. I can't think of a better song. Maybe Laurie can

1:50 AM, September 19, 2009  
Blogger Beth N. Carvin said...

Thanks, Michael.

Maybe it's time for HR to come out of the shadow? Maybe we are no longer content to let the Execs shine while walking a step behind? Do we want (need/deserve)some of the glory to go along with the strain?

8:10 AM, September 19, 2009  
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7:07 PM, October 01, 2011  
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