Do You Have an HR “To-Don’t” List?

by Michael Haberman on March 21, 2011 · 0 comments


Earlier in the month I got a newsletter from Daniel Pink, which I have just gotten around to reading. He always has good stuff so I made sure I saved it. One of the items he had in this one is something that he attributed to Tom Peters, also a favorite of mine. So I figure you can’t go wrong with the wisdom of Peters and Pink.

Pink said in his newsletter that one of his favorite bits of wisdom was the idea of having a “To-Don’t” list in addition to having a “To-do” list. According to Pink, Peters describes this list as “…an inventory of behaviors and practices that that sap his energy, divert his focus and ought be avoided.” Pink says he has been following Peters’ advice for years and “….it’s changed my life. It’s allowed me to spend a little more time doing what’s satisfying and important and little less time doing what’s irritating and meaningless.” He has the list tacked above his desk.

Pink ends his newsletter with the following:

Follow Tom’s lead and each week craft your own agenda of avoidance. Staying motivated — directing your own life, making progress, and pursuing purpose – isn’t easy. So get rid of the unnecessary obligations, time-wasting distractions, and useless burdens that stand in your way. The first step in bulldozing these obstacles is to enumerate them. As Peters puts it, “What you decide not to do is probably more important than what you decide to do.” 

This is certainly sound advice from a personal standpoint. But it got me thinking this may be pretty sound advice for HR as well. So I wanted you to think about what are those unnecessary obligations, time-wasting distractions and useless burdens that stand in the way of your HR department being seen as effective, efficient and strategic? What “to-donts” keep you from being the business-partner you desire to be?

Fill in the blanks for us and share with other readers what you would put on your “TO-DON’T’ LIST.

Daniel Pink provided a link to a Tom Peters’ pdf that gives a bit more information, so I am passing it on to you. Tom Peters’ To-don’ts.

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