This is what effective leadership looks like

HRD talks to Greg Barnier or ICG about why HR must balance the commercial side of the business with the people side

This is what effective leadership looks like

Effective leadership is about understanding your people, helping them to be their best, and moving with the times, according to Greg Barnier, Practice Leader Organisation Culture and Workforce Capability at ICG.

Barnier told HRD that strong leaders also excel at balancing the commercial side of the business with the people side.

“What a successful HR practitioner must do is really understand the numbers, the drivers and the dynamics of the business,” said Barnier.

“But importantly, it’s also about understanding people and that social aspect.

So, you can separate life from working. We’re all carrying our devices. We all have our different demands, so it’s not always a switch off.

“It’s great if you can in some places, but it’s not always like that so we really have to think again as HR professionals.”

Barnier added that leaders must prioritise agility in order to stay relevant and meet the challenges of the future of work.

“I think it’s really about being agile and understanding the world that’s changing around us,” he said.

“I know a lot of people would say that we are great and when will it be business as usual?

“I actually think there’s never been a business as usual, and probably never will be a business as usual.”

Barnier added that the world always keeps moving, changing and improving, and leaders must never lose sight of this.

“That’s the case for leadership, so leaders must stay contemporary, learn what the trends are, what’s around them and keep up-to-date with that.”

Moreover, HR must be in touch with the purpose of their organisation and really understand how their people can contribute to this purpose, according to Barnier.

“At the same time, it’s important to really show empathy and genuine care for people because if you want an organisation to succeed, good leaders know that that’s about purpose,” said Barnier.

“It’s about the purpose of your organisation, the purpose or your culture, the purpose of your customers and the purpose of your people who are working with you.

“So, good leadership is about understanding your people, moving with the times and guiding. Not so much about the telling but a lot of guiding and helping people be the best that they can be.”

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