Essay about The Growing Need for HR Professionals to Focus on Employees Potential Management - 4058 Words

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The Growing Need for HR Professionals to Focus on Employees' Potential Management

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Text Preview A NEED FOR A PARADIGM SHIFT IN HR FOR KNOWLEDGE
WORKERS
Ms.Jyotsna Bhatnagar,
Assistant Professor, HR/OB
Institute for Integrated Learning in Management,(IILM)
3-Lodhi Institutional Area, Lodhi Road,
New Delhi-110003
India
Phone:91-011-4631033 ext.240
Fax:91-011-4631033

Management & Labour Studies, Vol.28, No.3, August 2003.

A NEED FOR A PARADIGM SHIFT IN HR FOR
KNOWLEDGE WORKERS
“There was a door to which I found no key
There was a veil through which I might not see”

Rubaiyat, Omar Khayyam

Introduction:
The trend in Indian Organizations, deeply involved in knowledge management*, is of leveraging the current status, rather than, exploring, discovering and creating new knowledge. Pharmaceutical, software, Engineering sectors in India are at a sophisticated information storage and retrieval stage and are graduating to institutionalizing best practices in Knowledge management, albeit slowly. (Rishikesha, 2001).

The learning context in such a scenario becomes single loop rather than double loop. Single loop learning, is the more adaptive learning context, while double loop learning occurs through generative learning, where the standard way of doing things are questioned(Argyris and Schon, 1978; Schien, 1990). Knowledge programmes move from first generation to second generation.(McElroy,1999), using single and double loop learning. -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------*Knowledge management and organizational learning are inextricably intertwined and each one seeks to subsume the other within its confines (Beaulieu, 2001). The current paper, supports this and treats organizational learning as the construct in which knowledge management is nested. Drawing up distinctions within these fields is beyond the scope of this paper.

Management & Labour Studies, Vol.28, No.3, August 2003.

Yet there are instances in the Indian industry where knowledge management has moved on from Single loop to double loop learning and it is in these organizations that we see a profound change in the role of HR. The role of HR, lying more with the line managers and top management, becomes a trigger for recognizing and managing the potential of knowledge workers, who move beyond storing and retrieval of knowledge to mining new knowledge. As Waals, Kessels and Euwema (2002), state that ‘importance of knowledge development…urge for an alternate approach to training and learning where employees become the prime actors in setting goals and designing learning activities’. Let us examine the literature on HR roles briefly.

The HR role and Knowledge Management :
Senge believes that on the twin issues of organizational learning and knowledge management, HR professionals will play a very useful role, because ‘ultimately, there’s the need for facilitative support’ (Solomon,1994: 64). In a similar vein, Diane McGinty Weston, a leading consultant and author of organizational learning books, asserts, that ’organizational learning provides an incredible opportunity for human resource people to break past the limits of training and move further into the organization’(ibid:65).Young of Knowledge associates states that knowledge management must necessarily be a fusion of information technology and human resource development. ‘…on the one hand we have the development of the learning organization, we understand learning and teamwork much better; on the other hand there’s group-ware and the web,…the whole of it is fused…you need directors of knowledge management who can take the holistic view, as much aware of the organic knowledge base of IT, but more into the interaction between the two’(James, 1998:32)

Valkeavaara 1998, reports on survey questionnaires (conducted between 1992-96) of Human Resource Development (HRD) professionals'
perceptions of their work performance and competencies required of them, and has compared the results from the Netherlands, the UK, Italy, Germany and Finland. He... Show More

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