"At first, I was like, oh my gosh, I'm stepping out of my comfort zone," said McDaniel. But those new responsibilities taught her the value of "being comfortable with being uncomfortable."
"I learned such a great deal from that experience about how you think about talent strategies to enable business strategies," McDaniel said. "Thinking about how you lead really diverse teams from all over the world and creating that inclusive environment and that skill set continues to serve me well today."
In addition to thinking about flexibility in their own career paths, it's important for HR professionals to remember that employees in their organizations may benefit from-and want-the same thing. Your employees may be more interested in nonlinear career moves than you think.
In fact, a study cited in Harvard Business Review found that nearly 90 percent of employees said they'd consider making a lateral move with no financial incentive, for multiple reasons. The message: Many U.S. workers are motivated by growth opportunities that offer personal fulfilment but not necessarily an immediate promotion or bigger paycheck.
More Takeaways from Suzan McDaniel in the People + Strategy podcast:
Your talent strategy: Buy it, build it, borrow it or bot it? "The talent shortages are forecast to continue, so you have to think about how you are growing and developing. … So we have to identify new skills, new capabilities and then develop an integrated talent strategy for the workforce around: Do we buy the capability in our hiring strategies? Do we build it with our internal talent and reskilling? Do we borrow it with our contractors and/or consultants? Or, the fourth one, do we 'bot it,' and that's where the exciting world of generative AI is coming into play."
The office as a tool, not a destination. "We've got folks that are hybrid, some that come to the campus every day and some home-based associates. … But we do have and encourage opportunities for everybody to come in for certain types of work, so that we can ensure that we're experiencing our culture but also getting the right business outcomes."
"As we think about our headquarters locations, we like to see the office as a tool. It's a tool to do our best work together. It's not just being about a destination. We view it as a space to come together for really intentional in-person interactions and gatherings. So think about where you need to collaborate and create brainstorming, business strategy and planning. Think about coaching and feedback. Think about onboarding. That's a wonderful way to use the office as a tool."