Perceptions. Transitions. Actions.

By Mark Joseph Cancino



Volatile, uncertain, complex, ambiguous – buzz words that now perfectly describe the reality not only of organizations, but also of the society at large. While the pandemic continues to disrupt the normal, it gives light to the field of people management, normalizes its impact, and brings it at the forefront of organizations. Human resources practitioners are now perceived as the strategic leaders.

Understanding the crucial role HR plays in the current context, the PMAP Leadership Committee remains committed to offer timely and relevant learning sessions for people managers. In navigating through this chaos caused by the pandemic, it is critical that we learn how to manage changes and demonstrate the value of people in the survival of the business.

The committee partnered with Mariel Vargas Guina (Organization and Learning Development Consultant) to talk about the Psychology of Change in the Workplace last 22 August, and invited Ma. Paz Malubay (EVP and Managing Director of P&A Grant Thorton), Meljorie Atienza-Cruz (Director of Accounting Unit of P&A Grant Thorton Inc. Business Process Solution), and Hilda Cardenas (SVP – Global HR Director and Board Member of FactSet Philippines, Inc.) to lead conversations on Business/Financial Acumen & Ethics on 05 September. Attended by 35 and 46 participants respectively, the sessions gifted the participants with nothing but valuable insights and opportunities, revolving around three transitions:

From Theory to Practice. Change management theories and models guide HR practitioners to design programs that will champion process improvements and competitive strategy. With the pandemic, the goal is to ensure that the changes are appropriate and customized to the local and organizational context. For changes to be successful, we should partner with the management and create champions who will help drive changes, provide the necessary resources to promote feasibility, and act with decisiveness balanced with agility.

From Financial to Human Capital. HR is unfortunately still sometimes considered as a big expense item across financial statements. Our role as HR professionals then is to champion HR as an investment and capital in driving business strategies. We should always look for opportunities where we can contribute by understanding the business well and providing the context and data to help in management decision-making.

From Leadership to Servant Leadership. HR professionals are considered as the go to partners of the employees in the organization. Despite our personal struggles, we go beyond ourselves and heed to the call of serving our people. Through our support system, mentors, and networks, we still learn and grow along the way and re-energize while we pay it forward to serve and lead.

With more clarity on change management and business/financial acumen and ethics, people management professionals are better equipped with the right mindset and resources to drive business strategies with the most important asset of any organization – people. The challenge now lies in our hands – to go out of the Zoom meeting rooms, zoom in on the most pressing people, business, and leadership concerns, and act as the strategic partner of our leaders in the board room. This journey is most challenging as ever, but with PMAP Leadership Committee’s initiatives, we can all lead not only the function, but the organization as a whole.


About the Author:

Mark Cancino is an agile people leader, human capital champion, and strategic business partner with demonstrated experience in leading human resources functions (organizational development, talent acquisition, talent management and development, leadership development, employee engagement/experience, labor relations, total rewards) in education, automotive, customer service, quick service restaurant, entertainment, and technology industries. He is also a mentee of 2020 PMAP Leadership Committee.

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