HR, Labor, Homelessness and Unemployment

I was surfing news and found someone else in HR willing to talk about the connection between Human Resource management and American social and economic policy – An interview with Karlee Weinmann published in the “Business Insider-War room, December 19th, 2011 – If You’re Sifting Through a Pile of Applications, You’ve Already Failed. 

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“You wrote a recent post I’d like to ask you about specifically. It featured a 60 Minutes clip report on homeless families, and you called it “Tis The Season To Hire Someone.” I’m interested in hearing why you believe that.”

(Karlee’s answer) “I watch media like a hawk. I specifically watch the way that we talk about labor and we talk about workers. I think more and more, media’s catching up to reality and 60 Minutes is a good example of this. We’re starting to talk about the real impact of poverty and homelessness on our society.

One of the things that we always hear with capitalism is that labor is an expense, and we should try to minimize expenses, and we should try to maximize profitability and maximize productivity. And when business owners and shareholders make more money, there’s a value for everybody. Well that turns out not to be the case, because when we maximize productivity and we lay people off, even when the people at the top are making more money, it’s not cascading down.

Sometimes, there just is a value in employing people even if that job isn’t 100% productive or efficient. There is a value in society by employing people. It keeps people off the street, it keeps them insured, it keeps their families intact.

Even if you have a job that’s been unfilled and you can’t necessarily find someone who 100% fits the qualifications, it’s a benefit to society and eventually to you as a business owner and taxpayer to hire someone who’s a 40% fit, a 50% fit, or even a 60% fit, and just train them.”

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I love the way she thinks!

For the complete article, read more at: Business Insider

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