Change is Coming
Most legislation related to Human Resources or economic policy is typically begun based around the intent to address a controversial topic in a positive manner. The problem with much legislation is that the concepts and positive intentions often wind up going astray during the implementation process.
The potential package of legislation currently being discussed for implementation in the 111th Congress represents some of the most sweeping reforms and changes in work force and labor policy in the United States in decades.
No matter your opinion on this legislation, or any singular piece of legislation, there is one truth for 2009: No matter what else, we will see change and reform alter the way Human Resources and Labor Relations works in the United States. While we may not be seeing the end of challenging human resources careers, or the ultimate destruction of human resources predicted by some, change is coming.
Every person who has anything to do with the HR field, and beyond will be impacted directly. It is critical that HR professionals sharpen their skills and prepare to adapt for these changes, and the skills required are going to cover many areas beyond those required to do talent management or benefits or compensation well.
Conflict resolution, mediation, arbitration, negotiation, change management, creating the right kind of culture, and persuasive communication are all going to be very necessary skills for HR going forward, like it or not. We will see change, but it may not be the change or revolution that either side in the currently raging "Generalist or No Generalist" debate foresees right now.
Here is a list of some of the most significant:
1. Universal Health Care
2. Ledbetter/Fair Paycheck Act
3. Healthy Families Act - paid sick leave
4. The Employee Free Choice Act
5. Elimination of Striker Replacements
6. Elimination of 14(b) of the NLRA - Right to Work
7. RESPECT Act
8. TRADE Act
This list is not intended to be all-inclusive, but does cover a number important initiatives that will have significant impact on economic and labor policies in the United States.
Rather than being single-mindedly for or against issues, or even a complete agenda, I think it is important to analyze the implications of such changes, and understand the potential impacts they may create.
Debate and Argument
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