In the July/August issue of HBR, Ram Charan argues that the Chief Human Resources Officer (CHRO) role should be eliminated, with HR responsibilities funneled in two separate directions — administration, led by traditional HR-types, reporting to the CFO; and talent strategy, led by high-potential line managers, reporting to the corner office. While my colleague and I vehemently agree that HR’s status quo is an inhibitor to growth, it is with the same fervor that we disagree with Ram’s proposed solution.
Really? Break up a strategic function in response to underperformance in the wake of severe market disruptions? Put the most strategic pieces into the hands of up-and-comers passing through the leadership-development revolving door? What would the capital markets look like today if a similar tack had been taken when the CFO role was ripe for transformation?
The Chief Human Resources Officer role is where the CFO role was 30 years ago.