There’s a movement in my industry called “HR Positive.”

You guys are sharp. I don’t need to draw you a map. It’s about saying positive things about HR and being helpful instead of critical.

Being positive is a good way to live your life. Why be a jerk if you don’t have to be a jerk? Nothing good comes from incessant nit-picking and infighting.

I like to think that I’m HR-positive. I know you don’t believe me, but it’s true. Skeptics like me believe that things are flawed and broken. But here’s the cool thing: we notice the flaws because we can see the hopeful possibilities.

And because I’m so damn positive, my heart is broken when I consider the gap between where we are and where we could be.

For all the HR-positive talk, we can’t even oversee the eradication of the wage gap in HR — let alone across the entire business landscape. HR is mostly women, and yet American HR departments manage some of the worst family leave policies around the globe. And our biggest HR celebrities are older men and women — people who used to work in senior-level roles at big brands — and were fired.

Fired, you guys. Ripped to shreds by former employees. Noted in online journals as being some of the dumbest, most tone-deaf individuals in the history of business.

That, my friends, is why I’m HR-positive with an asterisk.

I believe in you — my readers, my friends, my colleagues — and I think you can make a difference. I don’t believe in anybody who currently holds a position of power in HR and thinks she’s doing a good job. And I certainly don’t believe in anyone who was fired, whether he or she sits on a board or not.

Until HR can solve real problems related to work (and not just brag about employer branding strategies), I’m going to be slightly cynical.

Well, I mean “slightly cynical HR-positive.”

It sounds like a terminal illness, doesn’t it?


  1. Sometimes the cynical and jaded parts of me win over being positive… sometimes I let them win.

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