Tesco Bank's CEO, Benny Higgins, says "It's not the job of HR to develop people"

Tesco Bank's CEO, Benny Higgins, says

People development is not HR’s responsibility, according to Tesco Bank’s Chief Executive.

Speaking to HR Grapevine, Benny Higgins says: “It’s wrong to assume that it’s the job of HR to develop people, it’s not, it’s the job of HR to support the business in developing people.

“When I think of people development, I think of every leader within the business and I think of every single person within the business. I don’t turn my attention specifically to the HR function. HR is there to support our process, and make sure those leaders, and those individuals, have the right level of support.”

In other words, he believes that good leaders – who care about enabling employees to blossom – should take ownership of development, instead of leaving it to HR. The function should be there to support and aid them, but not own it.

Higgins, who will be speaking at HR Grapevine’s annual HR & Talent Management Conference this year, believes that all business functions should “try and understand what the purpose of the organisation is; they should understand the vision and the narrative that they’re trying to create and achieve.

“Then, they’ve got to work out, within their function, how they can be part of developing that DNA that produces the right kind of organisation and sustains it in the right manner.”

He also goes on to advise HR practitioners to make sure that they are authentic. “In terms of the leadership and the relationship with people, it’s about authenticity and values. Make sure you have got the right values - and that you ‘talk’ the values and behave the values in the same manner.

“And when it comes to dealing with issues – to use a sporting analogy – make sure you always play the ball, not the player."

For a full list of HR Grapevine’s conference speakers, or for more information on the content of the day, click here.

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