The ability to get the gossip, but not pass any on. Confidentiality in HR is obviously important, but it is also important to build relationships with the rest of the business, and keep your finger on the pulse. Colleagues in other departments need to trust you enough to pass on what is happening, what is morale like, what is the real feedback on new policies; but to get that information without giving anything away is a challenge.
Being able to empathise but stay resolute is also important. If dealing with a disciplinary issue, or passing on negative feedback, people will give you lots of excuses. There might be tears and a host of reasons why they shouldn’t really be in this position. Being able to empathise but stick to the process or outcome that the company needs, can be really hard.
Karla Jobling is COO and founder of BeecherMadden, a niche recruitment business focussed on corporate governance, resilience & security. Prior to founding BeecherMadden, Karla spend 2.5 years working in a HR department.
For jobs in cyber, visit BeecherMadden’s website.