HR On Purpose

What if you told your amazing wife that the majority of your peers and role models were women, your closest professional friends were women and you go to conferences where over 70% of the attendees were women?

I work in a field that is predominantly women and it is exciting!

I asked if I could be a part of Women of HR because I admire the women who have taken a field that used to be called “Personnel” and moved it to “Human Resources” and have chosen, as a group, to continue to move the Human Resources (HR) profession forward.

Now, who wouldn’t want to be a part of that?

I'm in HR on purpose and the last time I checked the field was for all humans.

I think HR is, and should be, one of the last “what the hell is a box?” professions.  Sadly, we tend to mimic and copy “best practices” instead of boldy making trail blazing paths in organizations.I’ve never considered being compartmentalized or manacled by categorizing how HR should be done.  HR should never become a field that relishes in comfort or loves the idea of complacency. Unfortunately, the vast majority of HR people (men and women alike) constantly churn in the sea of compliance and administration when there is so much more that HR has to offer!

What can we do?

Here’s my challenge to the on-line HR community. Be intentional in connecting with your peers.  Model being a “human” to other HR folks.  The reason most of the HR community isn’t on-line is that they don’t know we exist.  They are so consumed and buried in their part of the HR universe that they can’t see any way out.

So, connect with each other on purpose.  I have tried to call and/or see my main contacts from Twitter and Linked In so we know each other more as people, as humans, instead of just an electronic stream of thoughts and symbols.

Women, and men, of HR, we have the chance to encourage each other and lift each other up. Let's do it!  If you’re geeked about being in HR, others will catch on and follow.

I have to go now, I have more people to meet and get to see how amazing they are.

Photo Credit iStockPhoto


About the Author

Steve Browne

Steve Browne is the ultimate connector and social media guidance counselor and also works in the trenches of Human Resources. Steve is the Executive Director of HR for LaRosa’s. He has responsibilities for the strategic direction of over 1400 employees. In his spare time, he is active in Ohio SHRM and runs a subscriber-based newsletter called HR Net. Connect with Steve on Twitter as @sbrownehr and on LinkedIn.


Margo Rose

Great post Steve: Your open minded approach to HR is refreshing. You stand as an example to those of us in the field, and I admire you a great deal.


Robin Schooling

Steve – I’ve told you before and I will tell you again – I so greatly admire the work that you do in your HR role with your company and in the greater HR community. I AM geeked about being in HR – especially with colleagues such as you!

Jennifer V. Miller


You make so many great points in this post- where to start?

First, I love how you are clearly comfortable working as a man in a predominantly field– you acknowledge it, then move on to the business at hand. Gender is clearly not a barrier to you.

Secondly, I agree with your take on “best practices”– they only take a department or a company so far. It’s good to hear about other policies, systems, vendors, etc. Beyond that, a truly savvy professional takes that data and finds a way to make it work in her particular situation.

And finally, your reminder to put the “human” back in Human Resources is a great reminder to those of us in “people” professions– reach out, connect, and don’t let the “administrivia” of daily life ever get in the way.

Bravo, Mr. Browne!

Meghan M. Biro

Great post Steve! You are a brave man. Smiles.

I’m delighted we have met via social media channels and look forward to chatting with you “live”. Virtual connection is fine to a point. Eventually, the human side wants to connect via phone/IRL to deepen the engagement. Your positive presence is always appreciated. PS: Getting “geeked out” is fun.

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