As a MHRM student, a question I get asked a lot is “What made you want to get into HR?” So, here we go.
I came to Ohio State as an undergraduate in Engineering. I had a rough couple semesters when I realized thatengineering was not for me. So I started looking into the business school, and once I finished my general courses I had to choose my specializations. My choices? Operations Management or HR.
I picked Operations Management.
And I don’t regret that one bit. It led me to the teachers who helped me realize that I wanted more. It gave me a very solid background in the inner working of an organization. I learned about efficiency, lean principles, maximizing flow through a production line, and continuous improvement. I learned so much about operations, and I really enjoyed it. But somewhere during the program, I also realized that an organization can churn out production and services at its highest efficiency, but without people, they wouldn’t be able to do any of that. People are the heart of your organization.
Studying Human Resources has opened my eyes to a whole new side of organizations. HR isn’t just firing people, and we’re more than the “people employees go to if there’s a problem.” Yes, those fall under our descriptions, but as the workplace is changing, our role is becoming more strategic.
Expectations for HR professionals are leading towards knowing how to analyze and interpret data, how to lead change in the workplace, and how to combine standard business practices with HR metrics to help lead the organization to their goals. To do that well, we must know about our departments, our business, our customers, our C-Suite leaders, our culture, and our vision.
My professor, John Shaffner, once told us that “as an HR partner, you will be expected to know everyone else’s business while such a consideration will not be extended to you.” And maybe that’s the case. But I didn’t go into HR to be cared about: I went into HR to care about people—more specifically, our employees and future employees.
I love the path my education has taken me on. However, I was able to combine both facets of my education into the best profession I could ever want. But no path is the same and no story is the same. Maybe you even have your own story to share. But if you’re thinking about HR, or wondering even what a “MHRM” is, ask me, ask anyone in the program. Because maybe it could help you with your own journey.