Punk Rock HR Episode 98
Meet former HR leader turned writer, speaker, and entrepreneur, Lars Schmidt. Lars is a columnist for Fast Company, and the owner of an executive search firm called Amplify Talent. He is also the founder of a podcast that is kicking butt and taking names. The 21st Century HR podcast explores how to build better businesses through modern practices and approaches.
There’s nothing Lars hasn’t done in the world of HR and recruiting. But, above all else, Lars is a community builder. He is an honest, earnest, and progressive guy with good ideas. Tune in to hear us discuss 21st Century HR practices and what he is doing to change the narrative. I hope you enjoy our conversation in this very first episode of Punk Rock HR.
In this episode you’ll hear:
- Why Lars decided to create the 21st Century HR podcast
- How new-school HR is addressing unrealistic expectations in the workplace
- Lars shares stories and examples of what good leadership looks like
- Many HR departments don’t want to touch politics or the third rails; Lars offers his reflections on this topic
- Why a willingness by HR professionals to be real, vulnerable, and relatable is a game-changer
WHY DOES LARS CHOOSE TO SHINE ONLY A POSITIVE LIGHT ON THE WORLD OF HR?
Here is what Lars had to say about being HR-positive. “I tend to interview leaders in companies that are making an impact and are doing innovative stuff. I’m not necessarily taking a 360-view of the field of HR, because I’m not interested in talking to people in legacy oriented companies. I’m not interested in old-school HR. I don’t want to highlight what that looks like and how that feels. I want to focus on where things are going. I’m on the rosier side of the field. And that allows me to be more HR-positive.”
WHAT IS THE ASPIRATIONAL IDEA OF 21ST CENTURY HR DEPARTMENT?
According to Lars, one of the most significant distinctions between old-school HR and new-school HR (or 21st Century HR), is that oldschool HR was a very centralized function. HR created processes that made them the conduit through which everything happened. It was very bureaucratic. In modern HR, we can push back against the bureaucracy; the role is more about creating the frameworks and programs where the department leaders can lead, and they can make those decisions. Within progressive companies, the expectations are now different.
WHY IS WILLINGNESS TO BE REAL, VULNERABLE, AND RELATABLE GOOD PRACTICE FOR LEADERS?
The willingness to be real and vulnerable allows leaders to make connections with their employees and teams that traditionally HR leaders just never did. Some of the topics that Lars mentioned during our conversation, fertility well-being, wellness, mental illness; these are not only corporate issues. These are social issues.
Resources from this episode:
Plus, check out these 21st Century HR Podcast Episodes: