I’m Ed Boylan, and I’d like to talk to you about one of the essential foundational components of human resources: consequences.

Employee Relationships Are Often Difficult

In a more perfect world, employment relationships would be simple, uncomplicated, and problem free. It is a comment on the reality of business today that the relationships between employees, and between employees and their companies, often are difficult have conflict and can lead to adverse consequences. Call it a commentary on life in the 21st century or a fact of business reality. Regulations, laws, and rules are here to stay.

With laws and regulations, come the requirement to comply… or else. The “or else” are legal difficulties and often an adverse impact on employee’s relationship with their employers.

Why You Need HR To Comply With Regulations

It is very important to understand the consequences of not having full and consistent compliance with human resources related laws and regulations to minimize risk to your company. And looking at our two-sided coin, internal and external, we have a bit of a problem. On the one hand, laws and regulations are pretty straightforward and even impersonal: there’s a law, we comply. Same thing with human resources policies; we have a policy, and where situations are essentially the same, we apply the policy consistently.

On the other hand, employees’ relationships with other employees, and with their employer, can often generate intense personal feelings, and have consequences: both positive and negative. For business owners especially, it’s very important not to confuse how you feel about someone or a situation with what you should do in that situation. There is a good reason why human resources professionals are trained to be dispassionate, almost impersonal, in intensely personal situations or conflict situations such as discipline and termination. Managing on feelings can not only worsen emotionally laden situations, like terminations discipline, but can lead to additional bad knee-jerk decisions which can lead to legal consequences.

Additional Benefits to HR Besides Compliance

I don’t want portray human resources as purely a compliance function. There are many areas in which human resources can further business goals: providing counseling to supervisors, increasing employee engagement, improving supervisory competence,