Hi there! My name is Sabrina and I am a Senior Human Resources Generalist at Exchange Solutions. I am responsible for providing a wide range of human resources services to the company, for both the Lincoln and Toronto offices, in support of business objectives and human resource initiatives, while maintaining effective working relationships with all levels of employees.
That’s an elaborate way of saying that I have a very wide variety of tasks to keep me on my toes! There are many moving parts to manage on a day-to-day basis. The variety of projects and tasks I work on, being a generalist, is never boring as every day is totally different than the day before. The best part of my job is the interaction with each employee, vendor, and service provider, and overall contributing to the business. I love producing results, regardless of how easy or difficult it was to get there. In fact, I guess that’s one thing I have in common with all Exchange Solutions employees – we’re all about delivering results!
As an HR professional, I’m routinely asked to evaluate what makes for a qualified job candidate. So, for a change, I thought it would be interesting to turn the tables, to describe what makes for a great Senior Human Resources Generalist.
After 14 years with Exchange Solutions, I definitely have a few pointers, 5 to be exact:
1. For starters, the individual must be of a caliber and personality that enables them to integrate themselves deeply within the organization, to keep their finger on the pulse of the organization. This, I would say, is definitely at the top of the list. An HR professional cannot be effective if they are not aware of what is happening in the organization. This can range from what is happening with your clients, what’s new with your employees (i.e. milestones, life events, engagement in their work, etc.), and what’s happening outside the office (i.e. rough commutes to work, anyone?). The more you know the more effective you can be.
2. As I mentioned earlier, every day brings new opportunities and challenges, particularly as an HR professional is responsible for so many aspects across the organization. So an HR Professional must know how to focus, to manage a demanding workload and have the flexibility to deal with requests, issues, and situations as they arise.
3. An HR professional, like employment candidates, must be extremely strong communicators. On both sides of the fence, whether as an employment candidate or for us in HR, communication is key – honest and transparent communication creates unified awareness and understanding for all.
4. I think my 4th point goes without saying – an HR professional must have strong technical skills and awareness of legislation and progressive HR practices.
5. And finally, it’s also important to be effective at motivating employees. For example, within my role, I initiate team building activities, design incentive plans to provide on the spot recognition, and provide opportunities for employees to come together in a social atmosphere (i.e. paaaartay!).
Life outside of work is also of ultimate importance. I love going to live theatre, hosting dinner parties, and planning family activities with my boys. To relax after an exciting day of work, I love to curl up with a good book. After all, being in HR, I also know the importance of work-life balance!