Flexibility – Still a Key Strength in COVID-19

Posted on Sep. 15, 2020  /  State Council Director Message  /   0

In the July 2020 newsletter, I shared about a key strength of HR Professionals; flexibility even in a pandemic situation like COVID-19.


As we continue this journey, several HR Professionals have shared with me that they are experiencing:


  • Fatigue – Information Overload


COVID-19 has forced us to constantly and consistently ‘think outside the box’.  As new information about the virus becomes known, our policies, guidelines and response processes continue to change.  How can we best navigate through this time of unprecedented change?


  • Continue to look at the situation in the ‘big picture’. It is easy to get caught up in the weeds, the details and employee situations that happen.  Remember to take a breath, step back and then organize the problem or situation with optionssolutions.  We have a ‘front seat’ perspective and continue to be a valuable member of our leadership team.


  • Remain in tune with connected groups of other HR Professionals. In a couple of days, many of us will be attending the SHRM Hawaii State Conference – a time to hear latest updates, a time to renew and fresh our passion for all things HR and a time to re-connect with colleagues.


  • Starting or Ending a Job


We feel for HR Professionals who have had to deal with furloughs, lay-offs and closing down of businesses.  Some of us have been furloughed or laid off.  What do we do to get ourselves ready for the next HR Opportunity?


  • Use the Pandemic experience to showcase your HR assets. You are a problem solver, innovative and passionate about what you do.  Cite examples to illustrate to a perspective employer your leadership and collaboration skills.  Although SHRM Hawaii has seen a slight dip in job announcements in 2020, companies continue to look for HR talent.
  • If you are updating your resume, ask another HR Professional to take a look. There may be opportunities to enhance your resume with skills and contributions that you haven’t thought about.


  • Look to the Future


Part of being flexible, is knowing that HR isn’t going anywhere.  In fact, we are much more visible and valuable to the bottom line of an organization. 


  • Keep your HR skills and knowledge up to date. SHRM Hawaii webinars continue to be a solid cornerstone in latest updates and news.  In addition, continue your membership with SHRM to find out what is happening on a federal level.


  • Is this a good time to go back to school or get certified? SHRM Hawaii has launched the Fall 2020 virtual certification classes and the SHRM Hawaii Education Foundation has generously donated funds for scholarships.  Now is a good time to consider continuous professional development and educational opportunities for 2021.


Flexibility – A Key Strength in COVID-19


Just like preparing for a marathon race, runners will take the time to stretch, eat right, rest and mentally prepare in their minds’ where and when they will sprint or conserve energy throughout the race course.   COVID-19 is predicted to be more like a marathon race then just an 800-meter sprint to the finish line.

How can we as HR Professionals benefit from being flexible?

  • We strengthen our HR skills and knowledge base. Learning and being open minded to different points of view helps us become better leaders and innovators.
  • One size doesn’t fit all. Flexibility allows HR Professionals to look at similar issuesconcerns and still be able to differentiate between the similarities.
  • Opens doors. HR Professionals are being given a unique opportunity to show case HR best practices louder and clearer in the C Suite. Our SHRM Hawaii virtual events have been particularly successful in providing a platform for sharing new strategies that can be implemented in many organizations.
  • We seek to find a place to mentally prepare and rest for the next leg of the journey. As travel as been significantly curtailed, what else do we do with our time? Read a book, spending time with family, more nap time, movie nights??


As always, stay healthy and safe!





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