patrick leddin

Ode to the Human Resources Manager

Could you have envisioned at the start of your career; how your days would unfold throughout much of the year?

There are times when all is well – people are engaged; and stints when some are angry – even enraged.

When people conflict and relationships sour; they file by your office hour after hour.

“Help us work this out,” they beckon at your door; it’s like they’ve never experienced interpersonal conflict before.

But you care about them and want them to be fulfilled; you say, “Absolutely, come in,” and tell them your thrilled.

You listen to their concerns and ask questions with care; your guidance leads to agreement – the solution is fair.

On days when all is well they don’t darken your door; which is okay because your busy like never before.

True, people are the reason you got into this field; but you work at a tempo that never seems to yield.

Critical jobs are unfilled they need people this week; your delivering a training session soon and preparing to speak.

Changing employment laws are in need of review; you must read them in detail to know what to do.

Your budget is too small – money is tight; the CFO plans to take more but you’ll put up a fight.

The discussion will be tough and no doubt intense; you see people as an assessment but some see them as expense.

Days are filled with budgets, deadlines, meetings, and reviews; policy changes, planning, and job interviews.

It’s an exhausting pace and your often worn out; but then you get a glimpse of what it’s all about.

An employee gets promoted and given a raise; another does something great and receives lots of praise.

A junior associate finishes a degree that she worked on at night; you helped a struggling performer finally get things right.

You see people at their best and some at their worst; but the organization is better off because you put people first.


Just a bit of fun to brighten your day. If you enjoyed this – and who wouldn’t 🙂 – here’s another one for Project Managers.

If you enjoy posts about leaders, brands, and careers, please consider joining the 53,000+ people who follow me on LinkedIn. Don’t worry; I don’t write many poems.


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I recently delivered a presentation on leadership at Iceland’s National Government Day. The event took place at Harpa, Reykjavik’s inconic concert hall and convention center, and served as a celebration of Iceland’s 100 years of sovereignty. 500 Icelandic leaders, from all facets of the country’s government, attended the session.

Great Leaders Know How to Create the Conditions for Engagement

The vast majority of employees are disengaged from their work and you – not the CEO, the HR department, or someone else in the organization – are key to addressing the issue.

Don’t believe me?

Here are two findings from Gallup:

  • Only 13% of employees worldwide are engaged in their work. This means that, “one in eight workers — roughly 180 million employees in the countries studied — are psychologically committed to their jobs and likely to be making positive contributions to their organizations.”