SHRM Book Recommendations Off The Mark

After you read this post…give me your suggestions…

I am not a card-carrying hater of SHRM. I actually defend their purpose and effectiveness more than the average joe.  Especially as a Trench HR pro.  As I was learning and growing in the profession SHRM was a valuable resource for generalists.

But for transformative, strategic HR?…hmmmm

I just got the SHRM recommended books for 2012.  For transformative HR they stink.  Full disclaimer, I haven’t read them.  But the titles tell it all.  I have read several like them so I don’t need to read them. Here they are:

  • Harassment:  Sex, Religion, and Beyond
  • SHRMs 2012 HR Trend Book
  • 2012 State and Federal Employment Law Manuals
  • Tame Your Terrible Office Tyrant
  • 2012 FMLA Tracker Software
  • The HR Answer Book, 2nd Edition
  • The Compensation Handbook, 5th Edition
  • Create your Own Employee Handbook
  • Solving Employee Performance Problems

There were two titles on the list that were intriguing:

  • The Power of Stay Interviews.  Check out these TLNT and HR Capitalist osts to find out why stay interviews are important
  • Tweet this!  Twitter for Business

This book list stinks because they are all manuals.  Boring.  This link stinks because there are no books about Transformative HR; HR that is less about policy and more about engaging a new type of workforce. This link stinks because HR pros will be bored to tears as they read them.  Shoot, HR pros need to be engaged too. This link stinks because HR leaders need some pointers too.  This SHRM list is all for generalists.

 Here are some resources you need to know about to learn about Transformative HR

 This list is just a start…

 I’d love to hear from you what resources you recommend….

Published by

Dawn Hrdlica-Burke

VP People & Culture/ Talent Consulting at Kinetix. Advisor. Speaker. Writer.

20 thoughts on “SHRM Book Recommendations Off The Mark

  1. It would be hard to put a list out that would satisfy ALL HR pros. The quarter of a million SHRM members would be very hard to classify in one catergory. What the bookstore is doing is highlighting the best sellers, most buyers of the SHRM store (on-line) are generalists looking for help in doing their jobs. I do agree that the bookstore needs to carry not-so-traditional books, hell, I’ve been trying to tell them to carry “The No-Asshole Rule” for years.

    Have you discussed this with any of the SHRM Store management? If not, take the time to connect with them to pass along your recommendaitons. You may not get them included but make your voice heard. I know I do. Also, the selection at conferences seems to be better than the “best seller” list.

  2. @akabruno Fab recommendation, I need to check it out.

    @John — good advice. I have not reached out to them. Sounds like a plan. What is interesting is how these are best sellers. Guess we still all have a big job ahead of us to at least get a few non-traditional books on the list.

  3. One of my recent favorites is Blind Spot by Charlie Feld. It isn’t an HR book; its focus is technology-enabled business change. In reading it, I saw a lot of takeaways for transformative HR.

    SHRM doesn’t seem to include business focus as part of its must haves.

  4. Hi Dawn, I have found The No A**hole Rule & Good Boss/Bad Boss both by Robert Sutton to be of immense help. The No A**hole Rule is all about building a jerk-free culture and Good Boss/Bad Boss provides some wonderful (research based) insight into how to be a boss.

  5. Dr. Foster Mobley’s new book “Leadersh*t: Rethinking the True Path to Great Leading” is one of the best leadership books I’ve read in years, and there have been many. Gets at the heart of Leadership which is where HR Leaders need to be.

  6. Thank you for not just posting the list of books that stink but also your recommendations. I love to read and as an almost graduate in HR and Psychology I would prefer not to read manuals as well so I look forward to looking up your suggestions.

    I noticed that you posted about Psychology Today so I just wanted to suggest a book that I have barely even cracked as I just downloaded it to my Kobo but that looks VERY interesting called How We Decide by Jonah Lehrer. It is essentially the neuroscience behind decision making.

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