HR Life Negatively Changed My Personal Life

HR Life Personal Life Negative

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Burn Out!

While positive vibes in HR are great, the negativity can be just as great. Why? It often takes a lot of time and patience to make just one difference. The work involved is dependent on many things…company culture, history, and the ‘opportunity’ to make a huge, positive impression and get a seat at the C-level table!

Getting a seat at the table is perhaps the most daunting and trying task and hinges on many things. From an HR individual standpoint, there are necessary strategies to focus on. However, in my experience, there are also other things that prevent HR from getting a seat at the table.

How is the company culture…negative?

Is the company comprised of a seasoned workforce not open to listening to fresh new ideas?

Do they learn from new employees?

Does leadership really value all employees? -or- Does it appear leadership only reacts and responds to those they have worked with for a really long time?

It is very hard to break into a culture with these issues and the task is very difficult and daunting. Negativity sets in.

Actual Recurring (Negative) Situations – hotline calls

  • HR receives the 5th anonymous hotline call for the same location in several months. They all have the same reasons for calling, “I don’t like management so I am going to continue these anonymous calls until something changes.”
    • After many investigative interviews and outcomes of no wrongdoing, the calls still continue. Why? Because management does not follow up on the recommended action items because they don’t believe anything will change (not knowing the specifics about the investigation process).

Employee Performance

  • Management comes to HR about an employee performance situation. After review, the employee needs to be put on a performance improvement plan and management agrees. About a month later, the same manager comes to HR demanding the employee be fired. This cannot happen because the manager never followed through on any disciplinary actions nor performance improvement plans as previously discussed. But this is an HR problem, right?
    • This has happened more often than not in my career and each time they come to me with an issue, I always have pointed back to…you can’t just fire them, you have to follow the process!


  • Hiring Manager wants to open a new position. The problem is they have already picked an internal candidate without posting the job or doing any interviews. They also already offered the position without following the recruitment process.
    • The Hiring Manager is frustrated with HR for making them follow the process. In addition, HR can’t approve the salary offered because it is out of line with others. Even worse, the candidate cannot be hired because of unexpected consequences. HR is the problem.
  • HR does a job description (JD) audit which ends in management reviewing and in some cases revising job summaries and responsibilities. This is not a fun process by any means for anyone, including HR. However, management usually finds this a waste of time and if C-level management doesn’t feel it is necessary, the audit ends.
    • Two things can happen when JDs are not written effectively:
      • 1. The newly hired employee is doing something completely different than what was posted (this happens often).
      • 2. Compensation review results do not justify what managers believe should be the case because the job descriptions are not correct. Of course, it is always HRs fault.

It’s All About People

HR at the end of the day is all about the people (employees). It is people who drive the business. If the people do not drive the business properly and in the upward direction, the business fails. People are the number one resource in any company. It is great to have products and/or services to sell but its people that sell, create and implement. If you don’t have the people, especially the right people, you don’t have the business.

“I don’t know where we should take this company, but I do know that if I start with the right people, ask them the right questions, and engage them in vigorous debate, we will find a way to make this company great.”

-Jim Collins

Does this sound exciting to you? These are the negative things that keep you frustrated when you go home each day. Rolling your eyes becomes normal, which doesn’t help make for happy home life. Especially if you are constantly frustrated about work, day in and day out! Ultimately, the more time you spend in a negative culture, the more burnout you get, making home life very unhappy.

All the best… *judean*

This is about the negative. Read about the positive here and stay tuned for my next post – the outcome!

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  1. You know, I can’t for the life me see how adults can behave so badly and produce such miserable environments to work in. I’ve worked with a lot of people in my life and those who choose to have such a negative attitude are poison for sure! Fired many, not something anyone wants to do but if they are champions of the cause then they have to go. So glad I am retired from restaurant life and working my own cause now! Thank as always for such a great post I always love reading! 🤗

  2. It can be SO HARD to influence leadership across the organization. I worked in a negative environment in the past…can be very tough to change because there’s so much FEAR.

  3. I have had great hr people and other times they haven’t been so awesome. I love your perspective.

  4. I don’t think HR gets enough credit for their inputs in a company! You have to be therapists, law enforcers, defenders, investigators, all while being the positive motivators! Talk about multi-tasking! Thank you for your major contributions to all businesses!

  5. I have huge respect for HR. I have worked with both good and not so good (more to not being responsive) HR individuals and I learn so much from them. It is a partnership and the biggest downfall I see is management not following up with recommendations or actions. Also DOCUMENT, DOCUMENT, DOCUMENT!!

  6. This perspective from an HR professional is really interesting and brings to the forefront the essential need for management to follow through.

  7. I think working in HR would be such a challenge. I worked as a teacher where I always felt the school culture favored the people who had been there the longest and knew each other best. It was so unfortunate because I had a lot to offer yet constantly struggled with feeling out of the loop and underappreciated. Looking forward to the next post!

    1. We see it in the education system all of the time! I have a friend who works in HR – a high level. She cannot get anything done because those in charge have been there for so long and they do not respect her experience and opinion – then why did they hire her? To fill a void and that is what is wrong with recruiting nowadays as well!

  8. A negative work environment can be really stressful and affect other areas of your life. It’s good to recognize when that is happening, but it’s even better if changes can happen.

  9. This was actually why I left my most recent job to try to follow my own dreams – my company was so fraught with negativity and culture issues that management just didn’t seem to care about. They were shut off to new people and ideas – unless you were part of the good ole’ boys system, you were not included, even if you were an executive that should be at the table! It really did wonders to my self esteem and when I left, I can honestly say I could feel the weight lift off of my shoulders!

  10. I wish my HR would read this and get it. People come first and not just “some people” which is why the #1 reason people leave a job – is a boss, not the task!

  11. HR job must be one of the hardest one out there. And I can totally see all the negativity that you experience. And let me tell you, you are doing an amazing job rolling out that negativity. And I love that Jim Collins quote!

  12. Negativity can suck you dry for sure. Staying positive in the throws of this type of environment is the challenge. Let it roll….eyes included 🙂

    1. I always say…I don’t have children for a reason (many reasons actually) but I really don’t need them because we have them at work! The sad part is a few make the role challenging and negative for all – which shouldn’t be the case!

  13. Ugh…..that’s sounds exhausting to me! I think we could just change “C-level” to “Student” and “HR” to teacher and we’d end up with similar situations!!! HAHAH!

  14. I love how you are trying to turn around the prospective people have with HR in general. You also aren’t afraid to talk about the negative persona that HR has had in the past for many people. Love it!

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