Organisations must shift mindset amid COVID-19— HR expert BY: Doreen Andoh

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Ms. Gloria Quartey (seated 2nd right), Director of Human Resources, Bank of Ghana, and Mr. Andy Okrah (seated middle), with participants after the opening session of a two-day Hunan Resource Leaders Strategic Conference

The Deputy Director of Human Resource, Bank of Ghana, Ms. Gloria Quartey, says it has become necessary for organizations to make the fundamental mindset shift from just surviving to thrive amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

She said the impact of COVID-19, which seemed to have come to stay like other health conditions, underscored the need for the organizational mindset shift, which she said should be led by Human Resource (HR).

She made the remark while delivering the keynote address and opening the maiden Human Resource Leaders Strategic Conference, convened by Alica Consulting, in Accra on Wednesday, August 25, 2021.

ALICA Consulting was established to be a strategic partner helping organizations and practitioners to achieve their strategic imperatives and sustain their relevance on the market.

The two-day conference was held on the theme “HR in the normal-leading the shift from surviving to thriving”.

Ms. Quartey said a plan to deal with the unexpected, as important as it was, was not all that organizations need in the COVID-19 environment and underscored the need for thriving mechanisms.

“Organisations had to respond to sudden, unforeseen crises whose rapidly changing nature confounded efforts to predict and plan for events. The pandemic brought into sharp relief the pitfalls of strategies that envision moving from point A to point B on a static path, and that assumes that one has years, not months or weeks in which to rethink outdated views and establish a new set of truths,” she said.

Ms. Quartey mentioned some areas that needed to be considered under adopting the thriving mentality to include mergers and partnerships which had insulated companies against insolvency, dissolution, and bankruptcy owing to their financial muscle.

She called on Human Resource leaders to embed human considerations into every aspect of work.

“We should recognize that redundancy is corrosive. It starts from the base and seeps through to the top. When the last employee is laid off, the HR practitioner similarly becomes irrelevant, so HR practitioners should champion and bring to the front burner a sustained human resource development agenda for a common good,” she said.

Conference

The conference, which has been earmarked as an annual event, is aimed at creating a platform for HR leaders to continually equip themselves with strategic HR transformational skills which impacted actual performance, especially, under the “New Normal”.

It will also offer an insightful overview of the key challenges facing HR function and provide solutions on how to manage the necessary changes that HR had to make to maximize HR and organizational potential post-COVID-19.

The conference was also to provide a platform for professional networking and mentoring of young HR professionals.

It pooled about 70 in-person participants and about 50 online participants.

Participants are expected to share best practices, real-world case studies, and global reports and share knowledge on how HR function could be enhanced in organizations for better organizational input and output.

The conference will be climaxed with a gala and an awards ceremony where both public and private practitioners who had distinguished themselves will be recognized.

Ms. Quartey said the HR function had been under intense pressure to ensure that organizations and employees were still delivering their mandates irrespective of the crisis.

COVID-19

An HR consultant and Convener of the Conference, Mr. Andy Osei Okrah, said COVID-19 had come to challenge the entire world: governments, corporates, industries, professionals, and communities.

“It is indisputable that things would never be the same again. Therefore, as a professionally responsive corporate training firm, we have been thinking critically and eclectically about how to help prepare HR professionals to meet new demands.