There is usually a misguided notion of what a Human resource professional does, many are in the view that Human Resource professionals are responsible for only hiring and firing, But, Human Resource is so much more than that. It’s as challenging as it is rewarding, and each day is as different and diverse as the next.
I will basically take you through my day as a Human Resource Generalist, please note that as an HR Generalist I am expected to be a jack of all trades and master of some.
8:00 AM: I usually start my day with prayers, this would take around 5 minutes of thanking God for life and praying for the day, this would take around 3-5 minutes, I would then take hot sugarless coffee, and sweet bananas(those ones with the spots J). I would go through the newspaper, linked in and a few other blogs for example ‘’The Kenya Employment Law”, Sunny Bindra’s – https://sunwords.com/’ blog just to keep abreast of trends and what’s happening in the Human Resource and business world.
I usually read in the morning as I am fresh and more focused. I will go through emails and respond to employee queries and queries from my employer as well. I usually create a work plan on G-Suite Google sheets, this will consist of all the activities I am intending to perform on that particular day. This is something that I have encouraged other heads of department to do; they then would send their work plan each morning to me.
9:00 AM: This hour is usually reserved for meetings, I would meet the Heads of the department to tackle any Human resource issues they may have, and this could range from recruitment needs, issues in policy implementation, performance management or disciplinary grievances. I would also meet employees who have issues that have not been resolved by their heads of department.
I prefer empowering Heads of departments to tackle most issues but sometimes employees may want to see the HR, Mostly I encourage each employee to ask questions or offer their own thoughts before making decisions.
10:00 AM: Time for the dreaded paperwork, well I usually have an assistant who does most of the paperwork, but I have to go through all the letters done, sign documents, prepare other documents that the assistant cannot prepare. I would also go through the leave applications, approve mostly or disapprove some with good reasons, then update the systems as necessary. This is the time I also do Payroll depending on the date. I will also do or share an article with all employees’ emails on any related topic in line with our industry. I usually encourage a reading culture within the organization as I know the advantages that come with reading.
11:00 AM: Management by Objective, yes you had me correctly, this hour I usually spend it by moving around the organization, observing work, sometimes talking with a few employees along the way. I discovered that this is a great way of noticing changes or things that need to be worked on.
12:00 PM: This is time is reserved for performance management, mostly I track the 360-degree performance appraisal system, make any adjustments as necessary. I would also review performance improvement plans with the heads of department for that particular department and employee.
1:00 PM: Time for Lunch yaaay who doesn’t like eating… I will proceed to the kibanda, my lunch must at all times consist of managu, most of the time it’s usually managú and ugali with a protein.
2:00 PM: This is the time I handle other meetings with suppliers, some of the meetings are with our medical insurance provider, WIBA, training facilitators, sometimes even disgruntled clients who have issues with some of our employees. Most of these meetings I usually attend with the director or the finance manager.
3:00 PM: Numbers, Numbers, well you have heard the popular saying ‘’Data is King”, I usually take time to go through the employee’s numbers, this could range from turnover rate, productivity levels, absenteeism percentages, this will inform most of my decision making. I will also track the Human Resource budget and find out if it’s on course.
4:00 PM: This is that hour of the day where I am working on a myriad of little tasks to ensure business wraps up In a positive way for the day so that tomorrow starts with new tasks to start and complete. I go through my work plan and mark out all the tasks that I have managed to accomplish, as well as the work plans for all the heads of departments. I normally reply to E-mail, catalog all employee issues, and determine the course of action, I will also make any last-minute calls.
5:00 PM: Time to leave the office.
That’s a typical day for a Human Resource Generalist.
Not all days are the same though