For Apple, this strategy has translated into market dominance in the smartphone and tablet PC markets. The success of that company continues to underscore the inherent value in synchronizing these three elements of an HRM framework, transformational leadership, and a continual supply of disruptive innovation for heavy investment in R&D.
The Practicality of Agile HRM Frameworks and Their Impact on Long-Term Financial Viability
The creation of an effective HRM framework, continual improvement of transformational leaders and their skill sets, and the infusion of innovation can transform a company much like these approaches worked at Apple. For the majority of companies however the practicality of how best to manage these three areas and attain profitability remains a challenge. The majority of companies struggle with creating an agile HRM framework that can balance the urgent need to get employees hired and accomplishing tasks quickly using transactional leadership vs. getting employees to buy into the vision of an organization (Schaubroeck, John, Simon, Sandra, 2007). For the majority of businesses, the need for managing a much greater focus on creating a more transformational mindset in its managers to ensure employees take ownership of their jobs is far more critical to profitability than merely moving quickly through tasks. The focus on how to ensure the culture is one that embraces transformational leadership over transactional mindsets is crucial for growth and profitability (Avolio, Walumbwa, Weber, 2009). The focus also needs to shift away from a task orientation to one more focused on the attainment of a shared vision that is compelling enough to transform a company. This is the most critical aspect of having an HRM framework. Having a transformational leader that can bring all these factors together at the same time in the context of an HRM framework driven by a compelling business model can often make the difference between a company succeeding or failing or not.
The practicality of HRM frameworks and their role in changing organizational cultures is evident in how successful the Indian outsourcing companies are in responding to market requirements as diverse as ERP installations to orchestrating compliance for Sarbanes-Oxley initiatives in publically-held companies. The HRM framework within Indian outsourcing companies looks to organize practice areas first and then bring sin transformational leadership expertise to lead client engagements. This approach unifies the HRM framework, levels of process innovation and implementation expertise these outsourcing providers have access to, and also serves as a strategy for creating practice leaders that over time become transformational in their leadership approach. This model works well for the Indian outsourcers as it provides them with the necessary framework for continually adding innovation to their approach of selling services and expertise.
A Strategic Approach to Leading HRM Framework Design
Ethical leadership is the foundation of any effective HRM framework and strategy. It is responsible for integrating the values and vision of a company into each process and strategy relied on for goal attainment RM (Brown, Trevino, Harrison, 2005). This approach to integrating ethical leadership into the functioning of any company must begin with a strong focus on transformational leadership supported by emotional intelligence (EI) (Kevin, Groves, Pat, Winny, 2008). Studies have shown that the greater the EI a leader has the greater is their ability to support both a transactional and transformational Approach to management. This is a strategic advantage to companies who are seeking to create greater synchronization across their HRM frameworks, leadership, and unique differentiators including product and services strategies.
Making these three elements stay in sync with each other over time however is challenging. Having an HRM framework stay coordinated to a leadership approach, all galvanized either around a process or strategy (including the strategy of innovation) takes strong transformational leadership skill sets in managers and the CEO. In these situations where HRM frameworks and management strategies need to stay in sync with one another, the ability of a leader to earn trust is crucial if the business is going to succeed over the long-term (Ceasar, Suzanne, 2008). Trust then becomes a very strong catalyst for ensuring the continued success of any HRM framework and is also the catalyst that ensures it will continue to evolve with the needs of the business. One of the most effective strategies for transformational leaders to use in keeping the HRM framework aligned with the needs of the company is for leaders to regularly illustrate through example how they are willing to make sacrifices of their time to help attain the vision or goal (Niti, Venkat, 2008). The defining of a transformational leader is more in their daily actions and less in their e-mails or company-wide announcements of direction. In fact the validity of an HRM framework must be supported by self-sacrifice in order for it to succeed from an employee adoption standpoint (Niti, Venkat, 2008).
The Cultural Fit of an HRM Framework
The culture of every organization is significantly different and places unique stress and constraints on any HRM framework. The agility of any HRM framework to work with these constraints and still create a level of compliance to internal requirements is critical for the long-term growth is a key success factor that is difficult to attain (Carcello, 2009). Often the cultural constraints of an organization force an HRM framework to change drastically over time, completely redefining its purpose and roles. In addition, an HRM framework can change to such a great extent that the processes systems and approaches to completing work internally to a company go through a massive shift as well (Howard, Bromley, Kirschner, 2007). In the mid-1980s IBM went through a series of these transformations in an attempt to get its HRM framework better aligned to the needs of the market, including the need to catch up to the innovations inherent in the Internet and Web application development. Microsoft is another company who had to face the same daunting challenge and with the same predictability as IBM, turned to modifying its HRM framework to ensure competent Internet and Web application developers were brought on board over time.
This also led to the development of a more distributed organizational culture that placed greater value on the knowledge and capacity for self-sacrifice on the part of leaders instead of just relying on their traditional authority (Niti, Venkat, 2008). As IBM and Microsoft went through these transformations, their HRM frameworks served as the catalyst of keeping the company's talented engineers, marketers and executives focused on a common vision and objective. Over time, the pragmatism of transformational leadership began to pay off in these organizations (Howard, Bromley, Kirschner, 2007).
Ethics and Transformational Leadership: Implications on HRM Frameworks
The ethics of transformational leadership have an irony to them; as they must be transparent and honest, consistent and focused continually on a compelling vision to succeed over time (Brown, Trevino, Harrison, 2005). In this context, HRM frameworks have often become the crucible by which the ethics of a company or enterprise are measured against (Marcel van, 2005). An HRM framework needs to have the necessary integration points to specific process and strategy areas to succeed, yet also must be able to be responsive enough to changes in organizational direction and design to ensure the goals and vision of the company are achieved over time.
There is also the need for ensuring the company's HRM frameworks stay consistent in structure and approach to the ethical goals of the company (Marcel van, 2005). Acting as a moral compass, the HRM frameworks that include transformational leadership concentrate on how best to differentiate the company's performance based on its ability to recruit and retain the best possible candidates regardless of their ethnic background, gender, age, or creed. The fact that an HRM framework can create an effective filtering mechanism to ensure that hiring, advancement, management and training are consistent to laws and standards is also critical for any CEO to appreciate as they create their own frameworks over time (Marcel van, 2005). Creating value through the more efficient defining of roles and responsibilities within a company can be achieved using an HRM framework that also anticipates future staffing needs based on long-term strategy. These frameworks, which often have the ability to precisely define staffing requirements by strategic plan component, are invaluable in ensuring consistency of hiring practices and attainment of the best possible staffing levels both from a quality and quantity perspective. In conclusion the reliance on HRM frameworks as a means to ensure ethical and legal compliance while also ensuring the right mix of employees are hired is one of the most complex tasks to undertake strategically yet core to the success of any business long-term.
Combining HRM frameworks supported by transformational leadership strategies can lead to businesses creating entirely new avenues of growth and value. The integration of HRM frameworks including transactional, transformational and emotional intelligence (EI) all contribute to the value of HRM frameworks being able to serve as a strategic catalyst of growth by aligning personnel with the needs of a given…