The business trek

Solid knowledge of marketing, finance and business strategy are essential steps on the way to the boardroom. HR practitioners ignore them at their peril.
By David Brown
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 04/03/2001

It is one of the trendiest of business clichés: “People are our most valuable resource.” But the thing is, it’s true. Few people dispute it and that is why so many HR pros find themselves in more visible roles today.

But lest HR get carried away on a surge of self-importance, remember: a lot of your peers in other functions still believe HR is way too nebulous, and they don’t like that. They’re not comfortable with the intangibility of HR policies and are frustrated by spending money on HR programs that may or may not support operations.

It is true that HR is increasingly sitting in with senior decision-makers, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they are being treated as equal business partners yet. The reason, says Courtney Pratt, HR practitioner turned CEO, is that a lot of people are still skeptical that HR has anything meaningful to add.