With respect, gratitude and a sense of sadness, it’s time to say goodbye.
Yesterday I announced to my staff that I will be leaving AHRI in February. After nearly 15 years, and seven years as CEO, I will be leaving with a feeling of great sadness but also with the pleasure of knowing that I have helped contribute to a critical vision for AHRI and the future of the HR profession during my watch.
In particular, I refer to the momentum that professional HR certification has generated, and which the board and state presidents continue to lead. As I have said many times, to many audiences over the last few years, the day is getting closer when not anyone can simply elect to call themselves an HR professional without committing to the development required in the role.
In leaving let me say I have only gratitude for the opportunity and support that the AHRI board has given me to grow, learn and work unfettered in my role as CEO. I speak of the chairman Peter Wilson, who after more than a decade in the role, will himself will be standing down from the board after the annual general meeting in May next year. Peter has been a dedicated chairman of the board and a personal mentor to whom I owe a great deal.
I should also say that I have had the good fortune to be working closely with Jon Scriven for the past year on a succession plan in light of Peter Wilson’s impending departure. Many of you will know Jon Scriven as the former head of HR at Qantas, but I know him as the incoming chair of the AHRI board after Peter’s departure, and as a colleague who has worked with great skill on a succession that he hoped would include me.
The board has now decided to blend the chief executive and national president roles into one, in a revised governance structure, and I am grateful that the board expressed their confidence in me by offering me the expanded role, and regret that I had to withdraw my candidacy.
It might amuse you to know that a turning point for this decision came to me during our recent convention in Brisbane. In his keynote, professor Stewart Friedman spoke about integrating the four life domains: work, family, social and community. I have loved the work I’ve been doing at AHRI and the people I’ve been doing it with, so my work domain has been more than fulfilling. That said, I was increasingly becoming aware of the trade-offs I was making in the other three domains and realised it was time to make a change.
My consolation in leaving is that I am going at a time when the board and state presidents are resolute on their agenda for AHRI, and I leave a highly capable and dedicated staff. I wish them all the best and will help in every way I can with the transition to a new CEO.
To my colleagues, to the wider HR and business community, and most particularly to the AHRI members, thank you for everything.
Lyn Goodear FAHRI, GAICD