HHR Europe Day 3: Lessons learned

What do tango and humanitarian HR have in common? The skills necessary for successfully leading and following - as participants at today's HHR Europe conference learned for themselves.

Day three kicked off with an interactive tango workshop that took participants out of their comfort zone by pairing them with a partner who they had to improvise tango with. The workshop highlighted the skills needed to successfully lead and follow in both tango and the workplace.

“Tango is complex, connected, co-created and improvised. I’m guessing your workplace is the same,” said workshop facilitator Sue Cox, Independent Learning Consultant, Ballroom2Boardroom.

Strategies to successfully lead and follow:

  1. Inhabit your own body.
  2. Engage your core.
  3. Use the ground and own the ground you stand.
  4. Connect - bring your whole self and be in constant dialogue with your partner.
  5. Project intention.
  6. Express the music.

One participant said the session demonstrated that “having common ground to be able to lead others is important”. Another said: “I presume too much that people know my intentions so I’ve learned I need to project them more”.

The group then engaged in a "marketplace" scenario, sharing innovative ideas that had successfully been put into practice in their agencies:

Themes discussed:

  • Career toolkits.
  • Using social media networks to find people and how to keep people on a database engaged.
  • Why and what of beneficiary recruitment.
  • People being replaced by robots in recruitment.
  • Traineeship programme especially for millenials.
  • Commando campaigns to recruit vacancies worldwide.

The conference closed with participants sharing the ideas they found innovative over the three days and those they will put into practice in their workplaces.

  • Catriona Batchelor, HR Advisor Humanitarian Oxfam GB: “I’m really impressed with the increased level of professionalism in the sector and the willing to borrow good ideas from other sectors.”
  • Joseph Shannon, Human Resources Manager, Trocaire: “There were a lot of interesting questions and challenges around collaboration working in the context of competition. I’m taking away from BRAC’s case study that we need a good analysis of our own HR structure and how we deliver that across our organisation.”
  • Sanjni Shah, HR Manger, DFID - CHASE OT: “We need to start conversations and establish networks with partners before it comes to the sharp end of a response.”

We'll continue to share HHR Europe presentations, photos and videos over the next month, as well as the final conference report on our dedicated webpage

Date published: Friday 5 June 2015

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