(1) Skill set: The things a person can do, their skills.
My skill set includes fluency in two languages and web development.
(2) HR: Human Resources. The part of a company that deals with hiring, training, benefits, etc.
Check with HR about your pension. They’ll have the details.
(3) Dynamic Economy: An economy full of energy and changing employment.
They American economy in the 1990s was incredibly dynamic.
1. What does Patty McCord think a company should do if an employee doesn’t have the right skill set?
a. Put them on a performance plan
b. Transfer them to another division
c. Fire them
2. Why is Patty’s idea bad for a company in a developing economy?
a. Top talent prefers a company that will give them a job for life
b. Start-ups are more likely to fail
c. People in developing countries are nicer
3. Why can Tata succeed despite not firing bad employees?
a. They can transfer employees to more suitable jobs
b. They’re too big to fail
c. They’re very good at choosing the right employees
By Jeremy Schaar
Today I’m going to write about how HR differs depending on the culture. You’ll learn how HR practices need to be different in different countries. You’ll also learn some good vocabulary for talking about HR across cultures.
Last week I wrote about Patty McCord–the former Chief Talent Officer at Netflix. She’s had a huge influence on HR in Silicon Valley. To review, she encourages companies to make sure that employees have the right skill set. If they don’t have the right skill set, then it’s better for the company to fire the person quickly. She feels that’s it’s a bad idea to put an employee through a performance plan where they’ll get fired if they don’t meet certain objectives over the next six months.
Is this a good idea? Most people in Silicon Valley think the answer is yes. They don’t want to waste time and money on someone who can’t do the job.
However, this is a very American way of thinking. In America, it’s very easy to fire people. It’s also relatively easy to get another job because we have a dynamic economy. Most Americans accept and enjoy this. Moreover, America has a social safety net. If you lose your job or have hard times, then the government will help you.
In other countries, this isn’t the case. If you lose your job, then you’re in a very bad situation. Therefore, when people are looking for jobs, they want to choose a stable company.
For example, let’s say you live in India. Would you rather work for Tata–a huge company that will basically guarantee you a job for life–or for a start-up that may fail? For the employee, it’s more difficult to take a risk with a start-up, because if the company fails you’re in a bad situation. For a company like Tata, they can attract top talent by guaranteeing a job for life.
One of the reasons Tata can do this, however, is because they’re so big. If an employee isn’t succeeding in their current position, Tata is so huge that they can transfer them to an area where they can do better.
So, the difference is quite large between Silicon Valley and the developing world. If Patty McCord tried her strategy in a developing country, she would learn that it is very difficult to hire the best engineers if you have a reputation for firing people quickly.