HR always organizes the summer picnic, the holiday party , and the company 5K. If they are sharp, your HR lady asks the local admins for help.

(This is why the admins think they work in HR, by the way.)

Organizing a company event is a pain because people always ask the same questions.

  1. Do I get paid to go?
  2. Do I have to go?
  3. Must be nice to plan a party. Shouldn’t HR be doing real work?
  4. What if I slip and fall? Am I covered by work comp?

(Ugh. I hated working in HR.)

Your HR lady doesn’t always have to be involved. I just ran a local Jingle Bell 5K, and it was super fun and not organized by human resources. People dressed in Santa costumes. Runners pinned bells to their shoes. Everyone smiled.

This event was organized by a local school in coordination with a national charity. Lots of volunteers. Local people with big hearts.

Could the event have used the touch of a skilled and dedicated HR coordinator who likes to throw parties? Did they need better signage? Could they have used a bossy middle-aged woman like me with a bullhorn?


But it was Saturday morning, and those women were probably tired.

Just because HR knows how to plan an event doesn’t mean that they should always plan it. And it doesn’t mean that you can’t step in and help out. So go ahead. Volunteer. Make things better at your company. Don’t wait for human resources.

It’s yours for the taking.


  1. Our company has voluntary teams at every location that plan these type of events. People from any function can join. It attracts that like doing this type of thing. The HR event planners are then reserved for the big important events.

  2. Great post. There are role models inside of organizations that want to take leadership for campaigns like a company 5K. To them it is a joy and pleasure to inspire and motivate others around them. That should not reside in the domain of HR. It should reside in the cultural norm of the organization that engages all employees to find their genius zone and exercise it at their company. We’re unlocking that EveryMove and really appreciate your post on the topic.

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