Let it all out

Some people will tell you that there is no place for emotion in the workplace. These are the same people that will tell you that everyone is equal, that fear is irrational and that there is a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

The workplace is full of people and people are full of emotions. These are the facts of life.

As a HR professional, there are times when you will see the extreme of emotions, the good, the bad and the downright ugly. You have to be ok with that and you have to react to that with skills that they will never teach you in school.

People laugh, people cry and sometimes, people shout.

Shouting is ok. Shouting is natural. Shouting is an expression of frustration, of need, of incompetence, of disappointment and desire. Shouting isn’t desireable, but it is acceptable.

As a HR professional you are going to get shouted at. Because you’re a safe place, not a soft place, for these emotions to be expressed, because you’re neutral and because you, alone from many others, will tolerate it.

And tolerate it, you must.

Remember, that when someone is shouting at you, they’re doing so because they are hurting. Remember that they don’t care about your process, or policy. Remember that they want to be treated as a human, because the hurt that they are feeling is the hurt that only a human can feel.

Keep calm, listen, keep your voice low, ask questions, seek to understand. Seek to help, remember that you are the person that can resolve the hurt.

That is the value that you can add. And it is the value that often individuals seek from their HR partner. The forms and processes can wait for another day. But the person in front of you can’t. They need you, they need your help, and they need it now.

So what are you waiting for?

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