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On March 11-14th, I traveled to Mexico City to be part of the 2014 National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce’s Trade mission. It was an exciting combination of attending and presenting workshops with business leaders from across Latin America, meeting with prospective large Mexican companies to present my innovative Total Engagement Career Mapping offering, meeting with the Executive President of Mexico’s largest Human Resources Professional organization, reuniting with old friends, and even a little sightseeing.
Next week I will provide more details on the entire trip, but in this blog I want to highlight my meeting with Pedro Borda Hartmann, Executive President of the Asociacion Mexicana en Direccion de Recursos Humanos (abbreviated AMEDIRH, link) and Lia Duran Herrera, the group’s communication leader who shared some of their excellent resources and publications.
Translated to English, the Mexican Association in Human Resources Management was founded in 1947 and has now grown to a membership of over 12,500 executives from different areas across the human resources profession. The equivalent organization in the Unites States of which I am a member is SHRM (link,) Society for Human Resource Management.
In my meeting with Sr. Borda, I asked him what the top key human resources challenges facing Mexican businesses. It is amazing how similar these challenges are to those on the top of mind here in the United States. Sr. Borda’s top four:
1) Attracting and building the right kind of globally competent talent so that Mexican businesses can be internationally competitive. Sr. Borda remarked that Mexico will quickly fall behind global business powerhouses like China and India if they do not develop the right kind of sharp global talent.
2) The too-high unemployment rate, especially among the 15-29 year old demographic. This groups is often referred as “Ninis” in Mexico (link to article about Ninis) – they are neither working neither going to school. This kind of unengaged populace can both hurt the national economy as well as the global competitiveness issue.
3) Demographic shifts. While there is this significant number of “Ninis,” there is also a growing number of senior citizens, now topping off at 9%. As health care continues to improve in Mexico as it is all over the world, life expectancy is increasing. Many of these growing number of older workers have great skills and want to continue working. Are they being leveraged by Mexican businesses? (See my blog about older workers in the US)
4) The strategic place for human resource leaders within corporate Mexico. Just as in the US, there is a growing movement in Mexico as to the strategic importance of Human Resource Management. HR managers need to be engaged by C-Suite executives since leveraging human resources is increasingly critical to business success. (see my blogs on HR strategy part 1 and part 2.)